If You Thought Halloween Was Expensive, Wait Till You Start Shopping For Thanksgiving

Here's how much a holiday feast will probably set you back this year. If You Thought Halloween Was Expensive, Wait Till You Start Shopping For Thanksgiving Giphy

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Prices are higher for almost everything and the holiday season only amplifies that fact. After the second straight year of double-digit inflation on Halloween candy, it’s now time to prepare for the cost of Thanksgiving.

Tracking the trends

By taking a look at recent years and identifying forecasts for the upcoming holiday, consumers can get a pretty good idea of what they’ll have to spend for a typical holiday feast.

Here are some key stats:

  • A 16-pound turkey will cost about $20.32 this year, up from $13.46 in 2018.
  • Nearly half of Thanksgiving dinner hosts went into debt to fund the meal in 2021.
  • Last year, roughly one-fourth of Americans skipped festivities due to high prices.

In 2022, Americans shelled out more than $1.1 billion just on Thanksgiving turkeys. While poultry costs are down slightly this year, those birds will still set you back more than a buck and a quarter per pound. That means you might need to cut back elsewhere.

In one survey last year, nearly 90% of respondents said they’d be eliminating one or more dishes from their meal to trim costs.

It’s not just dinner

While turkey, sides, and desserts get most of the attention, there are other expenses to consider when planning for Thanksgiving.

For starters, nearly one-third of Americans planned to spend more than $500 on travel last year, which is a clear majority of the 112 million people with holiday travel plans.

And as Black Friday deals increasingly encroach on Thanksgiving, a lot of consumers are starting their gift-buying earlier. On Thanksgiving last year, online shopping hit $5.29 billion — about twice the amount of a typical day.

When it comes to Thanksgiving parties, millennials are the biggest spenders, dropping an average of more than $461 per party in 2021.

Chris Agee
Chris Agee November 3rd, 2023
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