Consumers’ Easter-Related Spending Expected to Dip

April 14, 2022

After a hefty projected spend of $21.6 billion last year, consumers will be dialing it back slightly for Easter festivities this year, according to the latest forecast from the NRF. The prediction, made on the back of a survey of more than 8,000 adults, calls for Easter-related retail spend to total $20.8 billion.

Fully 8 in 10 Americans will celebrate the holiday, per the NRF, right in the mid-point of the range set between 2020 (81%) and 2021 (79%). This year’s total is down from last year due to a decline in the average planned per-person spending. Last year, that reached a record high of $179.70, whereas this year celebrants expect to spend about $10 less, or $169.79 per person.

As a retail event, the $169.79 per-person spending on Easter still lags behind at least one other single-day holiday: last year, celebrants expected to spend $220.48 each on Mother’s Day, per the NRF’s tally of the largest shopping days of the year. Still, the per-person spend on Easter is larger than the averages last year for Valentine’s Day ($164.76) and Father’s Day ($174.10).

The NRF’s data indicates that this year men (79%) and women (80%) are about as equally likely to plan on celebrating Easter. Although men on average expect to spend considerably more than women ($189.94 vs. $150.64), the per-person average for men is down about $20 from last year, while the average for women is about on par. Individuals between the ages of 35-44 plan to spend more than all of the other age groups, with an average spend of $232.65, although this is almost $30 less than last year.

Food continues to be the biggest retail category at Easter time in terms of dollar spending ($6.58 billion), followed by gifts ($3.44 billion), clothing ($3.44 billion) and candy ($2.98 billion). Average per-celebrant spend is expected to be $53.61 for food, followed by $28.04 for gifts and $27.93 for clothing.

This year about half (51%) of consumers plan in-person celebrations, up from 43% last year. Correspondingly, virtual celebrations are down, with just 13% planning a virtual celebration with friends and family and only 12% planning to attend church virtually.

E-commerce will also take a backseat to physical shopping, with about 1 in 3 (35%) planning to buy online, compared to 50% planning to buy at discount stores and 4 in 10 (41%) at department stores.

About the Data: The survey was fielded March 1-9 among 8,155 US adults.

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