HOBOKEN, N.J.–Looking for the ideal holiday gift for at least some people on your list this year?
With student loan debt grabbing a bigger piece of the bank accounts of many Americans, especially younger ones, LendEDU sought out to unwrap how the gift of a student loan payment would be received when compared to other gifts.
A survey of 1,000 Americans who have graduated college and who are repaying their student loan debt asked a series of questions that pitted some of the trendiest gifts of 2018 against an equally-valued student loan payment to see which they would prefer to receive during this year's holiday season.
“While not the sexiest of gifts, one might be surprised to see how often consumers opted for the student loan payment this holiday season instead of the new iPhone or an Amazon Prime membership,” the company said.
The 1,000 people currently repaying student loan debt were given 17 scenarios where they could either receive one of the trendiest holiday gifts of 2018 or an equally-valued student loan payment.
What Borrowers Said
Here’s what the survey found:
- 7% would rather receive $1,000 worth of Bitcoin ($1,000)
- 12% would rather receive a JUUL e-cigarette starter pack ($49.99)
- 64% would rather receive a $100 bill
- 36% would rather receive a fully paid Netflix membership for 2019 ($167.88)
- 41% would rather receive a fully paid Amazon Prime membership for 2019 ($119)
- 23% would rather receive the puppy of their dreams ($1,000)
- 29% would rather receive the new iPhone Xs Max ($1,099)
- 23% would rather receive one field-level ticket to Super Bowl LIII ($6,405)
- 37% would rather receive a $50 Starbucks Gift Card
- 22% would rather receive an electric scooter ($599)
- 30% would rather receive an Xbox One with Red Dead Redemption 2 ($359.99)
- 17% would rather receive one ticket to Hamilton on Broadway ($800)
- 39% would rather receive a one-week vacation for one in Iceland ($1,436)
- 25% would rather receive an ounce of marijuana ($300)
- 18% would rather receive one ticket to a Drake concert ($90)
- 47% would rather receive a LG 65-inch 4k Ultra Smart HD TV ($2,596)
- 8% would rather receive a Tinder Gold membership ($180)
‘The Burden So Many Feel’
“If the results of this survey did one thing for certain it was emphasizing the burden that so many Americans face when it comes to repaying their student loan debt,” LendEDU noted. “In every single hypothetical scenario with the exception of one, respondents opted to receive the gift of an equally-valued student loan payment rather than the awesome present, such as a ticket to Hamilton on Broadway.”
LendEDU further found even gifts that were less in monetary value, such as a JUUL starter pack ($49.99) or a $50 Starbucks Gift Card, played second fiddle to the student loan payment of similar worth; only 12% opted for the former, while 37% preferred the latter when both were pitted against a student loan payment.
On the opposite end, noted LendEDU, even expensive hypothetical holiday presents that can provide once-in-a-lifetime opportunities for free were declined in favor of the “all-powerful student loan payment of equal value.”
For example, only 23% of survey-participants wanted the puppy of their dreams priced at $1,000. Further, only 39% of borrowers wanted to get away to Iceland for a week at no cost, while only 23% of consumers would pass on the hefty student loan payment of $6,405 to sit field-level at this year's Super Bowl.
The Benjamins Still Popular
Similar to last year's study , LendEDU said it found only the $100 bill had more student loan borrowers clamoring for it instead of an equally-valued student loan payment. One product that nearly gave the equally-valued student loan payment a run for its money was the LG 65-inch 4k Ultra Smart HD TV, which is priced around $2,596. Forty-seven percent of survey participants opted to go for the new-age television, even if it meant passing up on a considerable student loan payment.
“Ultimately, the results of this poll are promising to a degree because it shows that we may have a generation of young, responsible Americans that are dead-set on repaying their student loan debt,” LendEDU said.