Canadian Readers Spend 6 Hours/Week on Average Reading

Three Quarters (72%) Say they Spend More Time Reading in the Winter than during Other Times of the Year

The author(s)

  • Sean Simpson SVP, Canada, Public Affairs
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Toronto, Ontario, November 1, 2019 — Canadian readers are spending approximately 6 hours per week reading, according to a new Ipsos poll conducted on behalf of Indigo. In fact, one in three (34%) readers multi-task, with more than one book on the go at a time.

Some readers spend more time per week with their books than others: fiction readers spend more time per week reading (7.8 hours per week) than non-fiction readers (6.5). Moreover, likely not wanting to fall behind on their homework, those who belong to book club spend more time reading per week (9.1 hours per week) than those who do not belong to a club (6.1 hours per week).

Among those who read various types of publications regularly, books are more likely read on days off (71%) than during vacations (69%), weekdays (67%) or holidays (55%). While newspapers are primarily associated with the mornings (56%), magazines (85%) and blogs (79%) more associated with afternoons, books (75%) are more closely associated with evenings or right before bed (57%). In fact, relatively few closely associate blogs (28%), magazines (13%) and books (12%) with morning routine or newspapers (30%), magazines (37%) or blogs (44%) with the evening or right before bed.

Heavy readers, those who spend 7 or more hours per week with a book, are reading all throughout the day, including: before bed (65%), in the evening more generally (66%), as a leisure activity throughout the day (63%), as a break during the day (58%), when waiting for something (57%), during their commute (28%), while eating (24%), during their morning routine (20%) or at various other times.

Thinking about the time of year Canadian readers are most likely to curl up with a good book, 72% say it’s during the winter months, compared to 20% who read more in the summer, 5% in the autumn and 3% in the spring. Boomers aged 55-70 are most likely to say the winter months (82%) is when they generally read more, more so than those aged 35-54 (72%) or those aged 18-34 (63%).

Looking ahead to the next year, 36% of readers say they intend to read more than they did in the past year. This compares to just 8% who plan to cut back on their reading. Most (56%) won’t adjust how much time they invest in reading in the next year.

Thinking about what would be the most likely to encourage them to read more, beyond having more free time (60%), 58% say discovering a new series or author would inspire them to read more, while 39% say visiting a bookstore or library would be the catalyst. Others say that audio books (13%), a book club outside of work (11%), access to books in other languages (7%) or having a book club at work (7%) would inspire them to read more.

About the Study

These are some of the findings of an Ipsos survey conducted between July 23-25, 2019 on behalf of Indigo. For this survey, a random sample of 630 Canadian adults aged 18-70 were interviewed online. Weighting was then employed to balance demographics to ensure that the sample’s composition reflects that of the target population according to Census data and to provide results intended to approximate the sample universe. The precision of Ipsos online surveys is measured using a credibility interval. In this case, the survey is accurate to within +/- 4.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, had all Canadians 18-70 been surveyed. The credibility interval will be wider among subsets of the population. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error.

For more information on this Factum, please contact:
Sean Simpson
Vice President, Ipsos Public Affairs
+1 416 324 2002
[email protected]

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The author(s)

  • Sean Simpson SVP, Canada, Public Affairs