Watch CBS News

More Americans went to the library than the movies in 2019

Top 10 books at New York Public Library
Top 10 books in the history of the New York Public Library 01:31

U.S. adults took an average of 10.5 trips to the library in 2019 – more than any other leisure activity, including going to the movies, according to a new Gallup Poll.

Participants were asked about how many times in the past year they did certain activities like going to a movie, sporting event, live music or theater event, historic park, museum, casino, theme park or zoo. Libraries – which happen to be free – took first place.

Movie-going came in second, with an average of 5.3 trips in the last year.

Going to the library was the most frequented leisure activity for U.S. adults, according to a Gallup poll. Movie-going came in second, with an average of 5.3 trips in the last year. Gallup

The poll is an update to a 2001 survey. While the overall rankings of the eight activities remained the same between the 2001 and 2019 surveys, movies did decrease. Trips to the movie theater dipped 1.3 average visits. This could be attributed to the rise in streaming networks, where box office hits and niche films are available with monthly subscriptions.

The average visits for activities increased between 2001 and now. More trips were made to museums, live music or theater events and national parks, according to Gallup.

Men and woman reported doing most of activities at about the same rate, Gallup says. However, women reported going to the library twice as frequently as men. Men were more likely than women to visit casinos, attend sporting events and visit national or historical parks.

People between the ages 18 to 29 visit the library much more than the other groups. Gallup says this is probably because people in college frequent the library to study. People between the ages 18 to 29 also visits casinos the most. 

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.