Winter Is Objectively The Most Unlikable Season

The survey results are in.

It’s official: Nearly half of Americans want to abolish ice.

Given the chance, 45 percent say they’d skip winter, a new HuffPost/YouGov survey finds. By contrast, just 16 percent would skip summer; 5 percent want to bypass spring; and just 3 percent would give autumn the axe. Another 26 percent say they wouldn’t miss out on any of the seasons. Five percent of respondents weren’t sure.

Winter also is saddled with favorability ratings that are far worse than those of its seasonal competitors. Half of the country holds an unfavorable view of the season, compared to just 16 percent for summer and under 10 percent for the more moderate seasons.

Winter’s high-profile visit this week to Iowa and other Midwestern states may have only exacerbated its image problem: Just 26 percent of Midwesterners currently hold a favorable view of winter, with 65 percent rating it negatively, for a net -39 favorability rating.

For perspective, winter is now more unpopular in the region than congressional Republicans.

A 62 percent majority of Americans described the local temperature at the time they were taking the poll as “too cold,” with that number rising to 82 percent among Northeasterners and 90 percent among respondents in the Midwest.

Cyclists brave freezing temperatures as they navigate traffic in Massachusetts.
Cyclists brave freezing temperatures as they navigate traffic in Massachusetts.

Those facing the chilliest weather are among winter’s staunchest opponents. Winter has a +7 favorability rating among those who saw a high temperature of 50 degrees Fahrenheit or warmer on the day they took the poll, but -1 among those who saw highs between 20 and 49 degrees, and a frigid -34 among those who didn’t see temperatures rise above the teens.

It’s entirely possible that the American public might thaw toward winter once they’re no longer dealing with its effects on a daily basis. (That’s certainly true of presidents, who generally see their approval ratings rise after they leave office.) We’ll have to rerun the poll during a particularly sweltering stretch of July and see if the trend changes.

Use the widget below to further explore the results of the HuffPost/YouGov survey, using the menu at the top to select survey questions and the buttons at the bottom to filter the data by subgroups:

The HuffPost/YouGov poll consisted of 1,000 completed interviews conducted Jan. 30-31 among U.S. adults, using a sample selected from YouGov’s opt-in online panel to match the demographics and other characteristics of the adult U.S. population.

HuffPost has teamed up with YouGov to conduct daily opinion polls. You can learn more about this project and take part in YouGov’s nationally representative opinion polling. More details on the polls’ methodology are available here.

Most surveys report a margin of error that represents some but not all potential survey errors. YouGov’s reports include a model-based margin of error, which rests on a specific set of statistical assumptions about the selected sample rather than the standard methodology for random probability sampling. If these assumptions are wrong, the model-based margin of error may also be inaccurate. Click here for a more detailed explanation of the model-based margin of error.