St. Patrick’s Day Revelers Get Stingier with ‘Pots-o-Gold’

March 9, 2009

Americans celebrating St. Patrick’s Day this March 17 will spend an average of $32.80 on decorations, food, beverages and festive attire, down from the average of $35.04 in 2008, according to the National Retail Federation’s (NRF) St. Patrick’s Day Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey, conducted by BIGresearch.


The survey, which forecasts that total spending among adults 18+ will reach $3.29 billion, finds that young adults are among the most likely to be saving their “pot-o-gold” rather than spending it on festivities.? Spending by the 18-24 year-old age group is expected to decrease from an average of $42.20 last year to $36.05 this year. According to the survey, 25-34 year-olds will spend the most, with an average of $39.42 per person.


Though celebrations in all categories are down from 2008, Americans still plan to celebrate in the following ways:


  • 81.9 percent say they will wear green.
  • One-third will make a special dinner (33.3%).
  • One in five (21.8%) will decorate their home or office.

The survey also reveals that while fewer people plan to celebrate the holiday this year (44.1% vs. 46.0% in 2008), smaller private parties (16.7%) and bar/restaurant celebrations (29.6%) will still be popular.

“Increased concern about the economy among young adults has forced many of them to pull back on discretionary spending,” said NRF President and CEO Tracy Mullin. “Many Americans will celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in small ways with special meals or a few decorations.”

About the survey: The NRF 2009 St. Patrick’s Day Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey, conducted by BIGresearch, was designed to gauge consumer behavior and shopping trends related to St. Patrick’s Day. The poll of 8,426 consumers was conducted from February 3-10, 2009.


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