Quebecers love a heat wave... and they've been rare this summer



    MasterCard's 2008 Quebec Priceless Index reveals that Quebecers are
    prepared to loosen their purse strings to make summer heat waves more
    bearable

    MONTREAL, Aug. 4 /CNW/ - Quebecers have revealed in MasterCard's 2008
Quebec Priceless Index that they prefer heat waves to snowstorms. In fact,
55 per cent of those polled prefer sweating in the summer heat while 37 per
cent would rather shovel a mountain of snow.
    These facts and many more are revealed by the MasterCard 2008 Quebec
Priceless Index, a study that probes Quebecers on what they consider
"priceless". This year's Index looked at what is priceless to Quebecers during
a heat wave.

    Ready for the summer's heat and humidity

    When it comes to the weather, Quebecers are prepared for any possibility
and are all too familiar with the extremes of the seasons. During a heat wave,
snow clearing contracts and snow blowers are far from their minds as they
dream of a refreshing pool. Almost a quarter (23%) of Quebecers own a pool and
over half (53%) have air conditioning in their home. Heat can influence the
decisions of consumers: 13 per cent of those surveyed who did not have a pool
indicated that they would seriously consider getting one if there was a heat
wave, and 23 per cent said they would probably install air conditioning.
    "Even if the weather was not on our side in July, summer time in Quebec
offers many priceless moments," explains Patrick de Bellefeuille, a Météomédia
anchor. "Heat waves are both enjoyed and dreaded. Quebecers have a whole
arsenal of ways for dealing with them. Our province is packed with great
places to cool off, either in indoors or outdoors, or in rural or urban
settings. It is not too late to enjoy them."
    For the three quarters of Quebecers who do not have a pool, many admit to
enjoying pools that belong to family members (27%), the municipality (17%), a
friend (15%) or a neighbour (3%) during a heat wave.

    What are the Quebecers' priceless picks for cooling off during a heat
    wave?

    People who are not keen on swimming cool off in other ways, such as
putting in extra hours at an air conditioned office. More than half of
Quebecers (56%) can take advantage of air conditioning at work. Others enjoy
the cool air provided at the movies and at the mall. In fact, trips to the
cinema and shopping centres are what a quarter of those surveyed like to do
during heat waves, right after trips to the lake or the river (32%).
    It's no big surprise that 17 per cent of men cool off with a beer during
heat waves. Of course water was the big winner among refreshments: 60 per cent
of those surveyed prefer it during a heat wave, compared to ice cream (10%),
fruit (8%) and frozen treats (8%).
    To stay cool at night, many Quebecers (44%) simply let the air
conditioning do the work. Among those who don't have this luxury, 44 per cent
turn the fan on full blast, 40 per cent sleep with the windows open in the
hopes of a breeze, 23 per cent jump in the shower or the pool before turning
in and 18 per cent lie low in the cool of the basement.

    Discover some of Quebec's top cool picks

    In April 2007, MasterCard Canada unveiled a new concept exclusive to
Quebec - an interactive platform of content generated solely by Internet
users. This interactive tool allows people to share their "priceless"
experiences enjoyed in Quebec, which helps to introduce others to the
treasures of the Belle Province.
    The www.canapasdeprix.ca web site allows visitors to view, listen to and
read the unique experiences of people who share memorable moments, grouped by
theme, from entertainment to great food, the outdoors to heritage, across
Quebec. It's the ideal tool for finding the perfect lake or ice cream parlour
that serves homemade treats to cool off during these last few dog days of
summer.

    About the survey

    The survey was conducted electronically among 500 Quebecers aged 18 and
over, from June 10 to 15, 2008, by Leger Marketing on behalf of MasterCard
Canada. Given the size of the sample, the results are considered accurate to
within plus or minus 4.38 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

    About MasterCard Worldwide

    MasterCard Worldwide advances global commerce by providing a critical
economic link among financial institutions, businesses, cardholders and
merchants worldwide. As a franchisor, processor and advisor, MasterCard
develops and markets payment solutions, processes over 18 billion transactions
each year, and provides industry-leading analysis and consulting services to
financial institution customers and merchants. Through its family of brands,
including MasterCard(R), Maestro(R) and Cirrus(R), MasterCard serves consumers
and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. For more
information go to www.mastercard.com.




For further information:

For further information: or to schedule an interview with Patrick de
Bellefeuille, please contact: Miriam Lauzon or Sébastien Boudreau,
Capital-Image, (514) 739-1188, ext. 235 or 228, mlauzon@capital-image.com,
sboudreau@capital-image.com

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