Record spending predicted for this year’s spring holiday.

Jane Neal, Content Editor

March 21, 2024

4 Min Read
"The Child" plushes, The Walt Disney Company
"The Child" plushesThe Walt Disney Company

While it might not feel like the onset of spring in many locales yet, March 19 marks the spring equinox and the official end of winter, with Easter right around the corner. A floating holiday, Easter Sunday falls on March 31 this year. And while not everyone celebrates it, according to the annual survey released by the National Retail Federation and Prosper Insights & Analytics, most Americans (81%) will observe the holiday this year in some way, the same as last year. And according to the survey, plenty of people are planning to celebrate in a big way. Consumer spending is expected to reach $22.4 billion this Easter season. The total figure is the second highest in the survey’s history, after last year’s record-setting $24 billion when the holiday fell nine days later in the year. Shoppers plan to fork out an average of $177.06 per person, the third highest per-person spend in the survey’s history, after $192.01 last year and $179.70 in 2021.   

“Each year, Americans look forward to the celebration of Easter and the renewal of time and traditions with loved ones,” says Matthew Shay, president, chief executive officer, NRF. “Retailers understand the importance of this holiday and are ready to help their customers find the items they want and need at affordable prices.”  

In the U.S., although widely celebrated in some fashion, it’s not one of the most popular holidays. According to Statista, last year, Easter ranked 7th among major holidays, falling below Father’s Day and just above Martin Luther King Day. Still, when it comes to spending, the holiday holds its own. Consumers continue to spend the most on food ($7.3 billion), followed by clothing ($3.5 billion) and gifts ($3.4 billion). In addition, candy is expected to account for $3.1 billion in sales while dollars for flowers are expected to reach $1.6 billion. 

Traditions Rule 

Consumers plan to celebrate holiday traditions in much the same way as in previous years, even for generations. The most popular Easter Sunday activities include cooking a festive meal (57%), visiting friends and family (53%) and getting all gussied up for church (43%). Half (51%) of households with children are planning an Easter egg hunt at home; even the White House hosts an annual Easter Egg Roll event. 

Many companies have been releasing licensed products for the Easter season, so consumers looking for gifts to fill baskets have choices beyond just candy. Sally Hansen announced a partnership with the Hershey Company for Sally Hansen x HERSHEY’S KISSES Limited-Edition nail polish. The collection of Insta-Dri polishes and Salon Effects Perfect Manicure ready-to-wear nails, inspired by the iconic foil wrapping and thin paper plume of HERSHEY’S KISSES, arrives just in time for Easter. Star Wars fans can celebrate the season with a Star Wars Easter sweater Grogu from Mattel. The plush version of “The Child” character from “The Mandalorian” comes in an Easter-themed sweater. Mattel has also released an Easter-themed character assortment from the “Cars” franchise, with fan-favorite characters like Lightning McQueen, Mater and Flo as well as the Easter Buggy, decked out with a fresh, springtime look.

The_Easter_Buggy.png

Consumers will be shopping for those Easter gifts at a variety of places. According to the NRF, the top destinations to purchase Easter gifts include discount stores (53%), followed by department stores (40%), online (33%), local/small businesses (22%) and specialty stores (20%).   

According to the survey, consumers say they are inspired to shop for Easter-related items because it’s tradition (64%), a social activity with family or friends (32%) or because of sales and promotions (29%).  

“The overall shopping experience itself also plays a role in purchasing behavior,” says Phil Rist, executive vice president, strategy, Prosper. “This year almost one-quarter of consumers said they were inspired to shop for Easter items from store displays and decorations as well as exclusive or seasonal products.” 

Over half (55%) of those not celebrating Easter still plan to take advantage of holiday-related sales. They expect to spend an average of $20.52 per person, or $0.62 billion in total, on these items.  

About the Author(s)

Jane Neal

Content Editor, License Global

Jane Neal is a Content Editor for License Global. Working remotely in the great state of Wisconsin, Jane specializes in retail and pop-culture trends.

She has worked extensively in the communication field as a managing editor, advertising copywriter, technical writer and journalist. She detoured for several years into academia where she taught journalism, English and humanities at the college level.

A complete Marvel nerd, she enjoys food, films, fishing, friends and family … and alliteration.

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