Snacks & Candy

Halloween Spending Soars: Report

Celebrations expected to near pre-pandemic levels
Photograph: Shutterstock

WASHINGTON — Consumer spending on Halloween-related items this year is expected to reach an all-time high of $10.14 billion, up from $8.05 billion in 2020, according to the National Retail Federation’s annual survey conducted by Prosper Insights & Analytics. Plans to celebrate Halloween are up this year compared with last and are close to pre-pandemic levels.

“Americans plan to spend more than ever to make this Halloween a memorable one,” NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said. “Retailers have implemented a number of measures, such as bringing in Halloween products earlier than normal, to ensure their shelves are stocked with seasonal candy, decor and other items ahead of this important holiday.”

An estimated 65% of Americans intend to celebrate Halloween or participate in Halloween activities this year, up from 58% in 2020 and comparable with 68% in 2019. Households with children are much more likely to celebrate Halloween (82%) than those without (55%).

The top ways consumers are planning to celebrate include handing out candy (66%), decorating their home or yard (52%), dressing in costumes (46%), carving a pumpkin (44%) and hosting or attending a party (25%).

With more Americans celebrating Halloween this year, average spending is also up. On average consumers plan to spend almost $103 on costumes, candy, decorations and greeting cards, $10 more than they planned to spend last year.

This year consumers are shopping for Halloween items earlier than ever, with 45% planning to shop in September or earlier and another 39% during the first two weeks of October.

“This year in particular, we see an emphasis on Halloween spending from families,” Prosper Insights Executive Vice President of Strategy Phil Rist said. “Not only are those with children intending to spend more on Halloween-related items like costumes, they are also getting a kick start on their shopping, with more than half planning to start their shopping in September or earlier.”

Popular costumes for children this year include Spiderman, a princess, Batman and other superheroes. Adults, meanwhile, are expected to fall back on longtime favorites such as a witch, vampire, ghost, cat or pirate.

The survey asked 8,061 consumers about Halloween shopping plans. It was conducted Sept. 1-8 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 1.1 percentage points.

The Washington, D.C.-based National Retail Federation is the world’s largest retail trade association, advocating for the people, brands, policies and ideas that help retail thrive.

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