A Blog by Jonathan Low


Oct 31, 2018

How Much Does the Average American Spend On Halloween?

It ain't peanuts (literally and figuratively). JL

Mike Brown reports in Lendedu:

All of the fun brought on by Halloween comes at a price that may scare away a few people: (the) average American will spend $185.50 on Halloween in 2018, up from $169.81 in 2017. Candy accounts for 41% of Halloween expenditures. This equates to $76.05. Costumes account for 36% of the money spent, or $66.78. Decorations, which accounted for 23%, or $42.67, seem to be the least of the Halloween-induced priorities.
While our level of involvement may differ, most of us will be taking part in Halloween festivities in some amount.
For the youth, enthusiasm for Halloween begins in September when costume ideas start taking shape. Once it starts, the fun doesn't end until the candy-induced stomach ache kicks in roughly three hours after that last Twix.
While young adults may bypass the trick-or-treating, Halloween still offers a great excuse to dress-up, look silly, and have a night out on the town.
Adults, who are often less excited than children, play an integral role when it comes to Halloween. Without them, who would chaperon the trick-or-treaters, hand out candy, cover houses in spooky decorations, or design the outfits that win the school costume competitions?
Like any other notable calendar day, Halloween will always have naysayers, but for the most part, it is seen as an enjoyable night that kicks off the holiday season. And according to a new LendEDU survey, Halloween is actually a day that will be forcing many to cough-up a decent-sized chunk of change.

Average American Will Spend $185.50 on Halloween in 2018, Up From $169.81 in 2017

LendEDU sought to apply a price-tag to the holiday characterized by candy, costumes, and scary decorations.
​To do this, we asked 1,000 Americans that were planning on celebrating Halloween in 2018 the following question: "How much do you expect to spend celebrating Halloween this year?"
After averaging together all 1,000 responses, we found that in 2018, the average American is expecting to spend $185.50 on Halloween. This figure is an increase from the same survey we conducted last year, which found the average Halloween expenditure to be $169.81.
It turns out that all of the fun brought on by Halloween comes at a price that may scare away a few people before the haunted houses even have a chance to. $185.50 for a few hours of spirited and spooky celebrations is nothing to sneeze at.
​So, what is making the cost of Halloween so unexpectedly high? After respondents entered in their total estimated expenditures, we then asked them to estimate how it will be proportioned between three standard Halloween expenses: candy, costumes, and decorations.
Candy accounts for the most costly expense when it comes to Halloween. According to our data, candy makes up 41 percent of Halloween expenditures. When converted to dollars, this equates to $76.05. Candy is to Halloween what presents are to Christmas; sweets make the spooky festivities what they are and excite all the young trick-or-treaters more so than anything else.
No one wants to be that one house in the neighborhood that is known for not giving out candy on Halloween, so everybody reaches into their pocket to buy some to handout to eager trick-or-treaters. Just don't be the house that leaves an unsupervised candy bowl on the front steps because your costly candy will disappear quicker than a ghost, and you will be left having to go out again to spend more cash on candy.
The second largest expense when it came to Halloween was costumes, which accounted for 36 percent of the total money spent on the October holiday, or $66.78. Depending on your levels of enthusiasm and spirit, costumes can become incredibly expensive. The more authentic the costume, the better the costume, and chances are a costume only becomes more costly as it becomes more impressive.
Finally, the last and least prevalent of all three Halloween expenses was decorations, which accounted for 23 percent, or $42.67, of the $185.50 projected to be spent on Halloween this year. Whereas most American's participate in handing out candy, and many have an active role in costume planning because of their kids, decorations are generally not as prevalent. There are still folks out there who truly embrace the festivities and transform their dwellings into haunted houses straight out of Transylvania, but for the most part, decorations seem to be the least of the Halloween-induced priorities.


All data used in this report came from a poll commissioned by LendEDU and conducted online by online polling company Pollfish. In total, 1,000 Americans were polled on a few questions related to Halloween. Respondents were screened to ensure they were planning on celebrating Halloween in 2018. If respondents met the criteria, they were selected at random from Pollfish's online user panel of over 100 million.
Respondents were asked to enter in an exact dollar amount when they were answering how much money they were expecting to spend on Halloween-related expenses in 2018. After we collected 1,000 individual responses, we were able to average them together to get the average expenditure. Respondents were also asked to enter in an exact proportion for each of the three main Halloween expenses. These values were also averaged together. This poll was conducted over a two-day span from September 29, 2018 to September 30, 2018. All respondents were asked to answer each question truthfully and to the best of their abilities.


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