Valentine’s Day Consumer Spending Expected to Rise

February 10, 2022

This article is included in these additional categories:

Customer-Centric | Industries | Retail & E-Commerce | Spending Trends

Total consumer retail spending on Valentine’s Day is expected to see a lift this year as a majority of adults plan to celebrate the holiday with greater average outlays, per an annual survey from the National Retail Federation (NRF). This rise in spending comes as more than three-quarters (76%) of celebrants feel that celebrating is important this year considering the state of the pandemic, with spending expected to reach $23.9 billion.

This year’s spending estimate is up from last year’s $21.8 billion, and is second only to 2020’s $27.4 billion in terms of forecast totals. Some 53% of Americans plan to celebrate this year (compared to 52% last year), with celebrants expected to spend an average of about $175, some $10 more per person than last year.

Keeping with the trend of years past, the most popular gift purchases for respondents are candy (by 56% of celebrants, up from 54% last year), greeting cards (40%), and flowers (37%). As more people are feeling comfortable heading out into public, 31% plan to gift an evening out. This is up from 24% who planned to do so last year, but still below pre-pandemic levels. 

Fewer than one-quarter (22%) of celebrants plan to give the gift of jewelry. However, these respondents estimate spending a total of $6.2 billion in this area — the highest spending on jewelry in the history of NRF’s survey. 

Valentine’s Day shoppers will be shopping online this year, with 41% turning to e-commerce to purchase gifts. This is up from 38% last year. Shoppers also plan to visit department stores (32%), discount stores (28%) and local small businesses (18%), while another 17% will shop at florists. 

About the Data: The NRF data is based on a survey of 7,728 US adult consumers fielded in early January 2021.

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