Despite the challenging economic environment, Americans families aren’t spending less on time-honored pursuits that characterize summer living, according to a survey recently released by Chase Card Services, a division of JPMorgan Chase & Co.   New barbeque grills, pool memberships, Little League, golf clubs, summer camps, and regular summer vacations are some of the traditional items and activities many Americans still plan to spend on this summer, indicating a cautiously optimistic mindset among consumers as summer heats up. To pay for these items, many American families plan to reduce spending in other areas, such as limiting their usage on utilities and landscaping services, steps often seen as a return to a “more simple time.” For example, this summer there will be more do-it-yourself dads mowing the lawn and making repairs around the house, as well as families turning off the air conditioner.  “Our survey provides an in-depth look at how consumers are spending and saving during these trying economic times,” said Joe Venuti, general manager, Chase Card Services. “As summer kicks into full gear, we are encouraged that a majority of Americans are still planning classic summer pursuits that enrich their lives and communities. Consumers are reducing spending in certain areas and saving in others to enjoy the true values of summer. That’s a good indication the economy may be turning the corner.”  The Chase survey, which was fielded by Braun Research, reached 1,004 adults nationwide by phone from April 28 to May 3, 2009. The findings reveal that:

  • 70 percent of Americans will not cut back on summer activities like summer camp or Little League.
  • 59 percent of Americans will not skip summer vacations or outings lasting a weekend or longer.
  • 82 percent of dads will maintain their own yards this summer, an increase of 21 percent from last summer when only 61 percent of dads were already maintaining their own yards.