Consumer retail spending around Halloween is expected to be high but fall slightly short of last year’s total, according to the latest survey from the National Retail Federation.
Shoppers say they will spend an average $86.27, down just slightly from last year’s record $86.79. That works out to $8.8 billion in total spending, down from last year’s $9 billion. This year’s total is expected to be the third-highest in the survey’s 15-year history, after the record $9.1 billion set in 2017. A total of 172 million people plan to celebrate Halloween – 68% of those surveyed – down from 175 million last year.
“Spending hasn’t changed much over the past few years, but we are seeing a noticeable increase in consumers whose Halloween purchases are inspired by … social media,” NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said. “Retailers expect to have another strong Halloween season and have stocked up on candy, decorations and the season’s most popular costumes.”
About two-thirds of that total spending will be on costumes (totaling $3.2 billion – purchased by 67% of Halloween shoppers) and decorations ($2.7 billion; 72%), with another $2.6 billion being spent on candy, the most popular purchase (planned by 95% of Halloween shoppers).
Some 17% (29 million) of celebrants plan on dressing their pets for the holiday. According to the NRF, Americans will spend $490 million on costumes for their pets this Halloween, which is more than double what they dropped to dress their dogs, cats and other critters in 2010.
Once again this year the top children’s costumes are Princess and Superhero costumes. Almost half (47%) of adults say they plan to dress up this year with Witch costumes being the clear favorite. Celebrants plan to shop for Halloween merchandise at discount stores (42%), specialty Halloween or customer stores (36%), online (25%), grocery stores (25%) and department stores (23%).