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Majority of Canadians still prefer ‘Christmas’ to ‘Holiday’ Season: Ipsos poll

WATCH: With the help of Ipsos, Global News has discovered who's celebrating what and why, and whether Santa Claus is losing favour among Canadians. Mike Armstrong reports.

Is it the Christmas or Holiday season?

While a majority of Canadians believe the end of the year should be referred to as the “Christmas Season,” the phrase is losing ground to those who believe it should be the “Holiday Season,” according to a new Ipsos poll conducted exclusively for Global News.

Christmas-Season

But the 69 per cent of Canadians who prefer “Christmas Season” is down four points from 73 per cent in 2014, according to the poll. Conversely, the 31 per cent in the “Holiday Season” camp has grown from 27 per cent in 2014.

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READ MORE: The holidays can make mental health problems worse. Here’s how to manage

Across the country, residents of Saskatchewan and Manitoba and Alberta, at 76 per cent, are most likely to favour the “Christmas Season” term.

Ontarians come in at a close second with 71 per cent, followed by 68 per cent of B.C. and Atlantic residents, and 74 per cent of those living in the Atlantic provinces.

Quebecers are least likely to employ “Christmas Season” and are more likely than every other province to favour “holiday season.” But even they prefer Christmas with 63 per cent favouring the religious-themed term instead of the secular “holiday season.”

The annual war of words over the holiday between Christians and non-Christians has boiled over in the past. And companies like WalMart and Starbucks have done away with the “Merry Christmas” to avoid offending people who don’t partake in the holiday.

WATCH: Donald Trump proposes boycotting Starbucks over their Christmas cups

Bloviating Republican presidential contender Donald Trump weighed into the debate in early November when he suggested boycotting Starbucks after they removed Merry Christmas from its coffee cups.

“Did you read about Starbucks? No more Merry Christmas on Starbucks,” Trump told a crowd of thousands at rally in Springfield, Illinois.

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“Maybe we should boycott Starbucks. I don’t know,” he said. “Seriously, I don’t care.”

Christmas is a time for family, not gifts

While debate over the political correctness of Holidays versus Christmas continues, the poll also found that a majority of Canadians (59 per cent) think Christmas is a time for family, while just 20 per cent believe it’s a time to reflect on the birth of Jesus.

Another 12 per cent believe it’s a “nice festive season in the middle of winter” and nine per cent believe it’s time for presents.

Santa’s approval rating is slipping

Meanwhile, Santa Claus had a tough year as his approval ratings slipped among Canadians seven points down from 85 per cent to 78 per cent, according to the Ipsos poll.

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The approval for Kris Kringle’s performance was strongest in B.C. (83 per cent), Alberta (82 per cent) and the Atlantic provinces (80 per cent).

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Saskatchewan and Manitoba gave Saint Nick his lowest rating of 74 per cent, while Quebec was slightly higher at 75 per cent. Ontarians were in the middle at 78 per cent.

Exclusive Global News Ipsos polls are protected by copyright. The information and/or data may only be rebroadcast or republished with full and proper credit and attribution to “Global News Ipsos Reid.” For the poll, a sample of 2,002 Canadians from the Ipsos panel was interviewed from December 16 to 18, 2015 and is accurate to within 2.5 percentage points 19 times out of 20.