U.S. consumers are expected to spend $20.6 billion for Easter holiday travel, clothes, and events including egg hunts and Sunday dinner. The National Retail Federation in cooperation with Prosper Insights said spending is forecast to be 3.7% lower this year compared with 2021.
A total of 80% of Americans said they plan to celebrate Easter, with 51% planning in-person celebrations, according to the NRF.
“Consumers are eager to return to their pre-pandemic holiday traditions, particularly as it relates to purchasing food and gifts for in-person celebrations this Easter,” said NRF CEO Matthew Shay. “Friends and family want to be together, and consumers are willing to spend money to make these events memorable.”
Average spending per person is forecast at $169.79, the third highest year on record following 2021 and 2020. The biggest percentage of spending this Easter will be on food at an average of $53.61, followed by $28.03 on gifts and $27.93 on clothing with the remaining spent on travel, decorations and candy.
The average spend is down roughly $10 from a year ago as families are cutting back and bargain shopping because of inflation. NRF said inflation concerns are driving consumers to look for the best values when Easter shopping. If the price of an Easter-related item is higher than expected, 42% of consumers said they will look for it at another retailer and 31% will find an alternative like another brand or color. Like last year, half of holiday shoppers plan to purchase gifts at discount stores, 41% at department stores and 35% will shop online. More than one-third said they will attend church this Easter and just 12% of them will attend church virtually.
“Even those not celebrating Easter still plan to spend an average of $18.49 per person, underscoring this popular holiday’s wide economic reach,” said Prosper Insights Executive Vice President of Strategy Phil Rist.
A report from Numerator looked at how consumers would celebrate this Easter with respect to COVID-19 concerns. Numerator found 61% of consumers do not expect COVID to impact their celebrations. This survey also found 97% said they will make an Easter Sunday purchase, but 75% also expect inflation to impact their shopping.
Numerator’s survey found that 76% will spend the biggest part of the holiday budget on food, followed by candy and gifts. Numerator also found 25% plan to buy alcoholic beverages this Easter. The Numerator also found 48% said they will look for promotions, 41% plan to buy fewer items this year, 34% said they would switch to lower-priced brands and 31% said they shopped earlier than usual this year. Just 7% said inflation would not change their shopping behavior.
Numerator found 88% said they expect to shop inside stores, and 32% said the majority will shop online and Amazon is the online retailer of choice with 22% saying they will make purchases from the e-tail titan. Mass retailers like Walmart, Target and Costco are also favored shopping venues by 61% and a majority will also shop at grocery stores. Numerator found 42% of respondents plan to spend between $26 and $75 on their Easter purchases. About one-third will spend between $75 and $150.
Among those respondents who intend to celebrate, 64% plan to gather with family and friends, up 52% from 2021. Eleven percent of respondents say they will travel for Easter 2022, slightly surpassing pre-COVID norms of 10%.