Valentine's Day in the U.S. - Statistics & Facts

Valentine’s Day is celebrated every year on February 14th, and is widely considered the most romantic holiday of the year. Although the holiday’s roots are ancient and related to a Christian martyr, Saint Valentine of Rome, today it is more a celebration of love; both romantic love between partners, and platonic love between friends and family. Children in the United States will distribute Valentines cards and candy to their classmates and couples will plan a romantic date night for the occasion. Consumers in America spent approximately 18.2 billion U.S. dollars for Valentine’s Day in 2017, a figure which is expected to rise to around 20.7 billion dollars in 2019. The majority of Valentine’s Day sales are attributed to romantic evenings out, followed by gifts of experience and jewelry. Americans who are engaged to be married are expected to spend the most on average for their Valentine, at around 88 U.S. dollars per person. Once the couple is married, this figure drops to about 55 dollars per person.

A 2019 survey found that about 51 percent of Americans plan to celebrate Valentine’s Day in that year, making it one of the more controversial holidays. For many people, they see the holiday as an unwelcome reminder of their own loneliness or unsatisfactory love life. However, this doesn’t stop the 14 percent of Americans who plan to celebrate the holiday alone. Around 63 percent of Valentine’s Day gifts consist of sweets, making it the most popular gift choice for that day, followed by flowers and restaurant visits. The preferred gift to give differs between men and women, with men showing a strong preference for flowers and women showing a strong preference for self-made gifts.

It is never a good idea to skimp out on your loved ones, and the average U.S. consumer between the age of 35 and 44 years is planning to spend about 280 dollars on Valentine’s Day, more than any other age group. Some of the most popular places to buy Valentine’s Day gifts are the supermarket, online stores, and shopping centers. While a significant portion of Americans wait till the last minute to purchase a Valentine's Day gift, around16 percent of consumers do their Valentine's Day shopping in the first two weeks of January.

Valentine’s Day is not necessarily reserved only for romantic partners; many Americans are planning to buy a small token of their affection for their pets, with consumers between the age of 25 and 34 expecting to spend about 12.7 U.S. dollars on a gift for their pet. Perhaps this is part of a larger trend of pushing back against Valentine’s Day. A 2018 survey found that 27 percent of Americans believe that Valentine’s Day is overrated and 53 percent believe that couples do not need a specific day in the year to show love for each other. There is also a rising trend of “Anti-Valentine’s Day” celebrations, which is meant for people who have nothing but contempt for Valentine’s Day and its traditions. At these parties, people celebrate the state of being single, poke fun at traditional ideas of romantic love, and reject the consumerist nature of Valentine's Day.

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Valentine's Day in the United States

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