What is the Economic Impact of Valentine’s Day? (2024)

There is a definite divide when it comes to how people feel about Valentine’s Day. Many enjoy having an excuse to buy cute gifts for their friends and loved ones, while others see it as an overly commercialized holiday with no true meaning.

No matter how you feel about the holiday, there is no doubt that there are benefits to celebrating it. Whether or not you are making purchases for loved ones, the money spent helps the economy to grow. Read below to see the impact of buying that bouquet of flowers or box of chocolates this Valentine’s Day.

In general, how do holidays benefit the economy?

To understand why holidays benefit the economy, it is important to understand the concept of gross domestic product (GDP). A country’s GDP measures the total value of all goods and services produced within the country in a specific amount of time. A rising GDP means the economy is growing. In the United States, 68% of the GDP is from spending.

In the week or so leading up to a major holiday, you are making purchases that you would not make otherwise. These spikes in sales benefit the economy and earn businesses more money. Khawaja Mamun, associate professor of business economics at Sacred Heart University, explained how this spending cycle benefits the economy and increases the country’s GDP.

“As we spend more, many people benefit and earn money,” he said. “As businesses and workers earn more money, they tend to spend that money. If they don’t spend, then those without the income are also not able to spend.”

What is it about Valentine’s Day that tends to boost the economy?

Valentine’s Day is unique in that most consumers have a reason to make a purchase. Whether or not you are in a romantic relationship, there is likely someone you are buying a gift for. Many people tend to buy gifts for their friends, coworkers, children, relatives, etc.

According to the National Retail Federation (NRF), 62% of consumers ages 25-34 plan to celebrate Valentine’s Day in 2024. The projected total in general for spending is $25.8 billion, while the projection for spending specifically on significant others is $14.2 billion. Despite the NRF projecting that consumers will buy less for their nonromantic relationships this year, this gap attests that there are still people buying gifts for their friends and family members.

What are the most purchased Valentine’s Day gifts?

Each year, the NRF takes an annual Valentine’s Day Spending Survey to see what consumers plan to purchase for their loved ones. Here are the results for the 2024 survey:

  • Candy (57%)
  • Greeting cards (40%)
  • Flowers (39%)
  • An evening out (32%)
  • Jewelry (22%)
  • Clothing (21%)
  • Gift card/gift certificate (19%)

Consumers are expected to spend $185.81 each on average, which is $8 more than the average for the past five years. Forty percent do their shopping online, 33% at department stores, 31% at discount stores and 17% at florists.

How does Valentine’s Day benefit small businesses?

Although you can probably find the same products online or in a large department store, there are benefits to shopping at small businesses. When you shop locally, you are creating more jobs, helping the local economy and supporting local shop owners. You also may find unique products that are not available at a department store. For example, many small businesses specialize in customizable gifts that tend to be ideal for holidays like Valentine’s Day.

“Mom-and-pop restaurants, local flower shops and small jewelry stores are the ones that really benefit from this holiday,” said Mamun. “There are even customizable candy shops with products you can write a name on.”

Despite the benefits to the economy, it is important to note that love should not be measured in gifts. Mamun has important advice for those celebrating Valentine’s Day: “Remember, it’s not the money that matters; it’s love.”

Want to learn more about economics & finance? Explore programs at Sacred Heart University.

Are you interested in studying economics and finance? Explore the many online, hybrid and in-person undergraduate, graduate and doctoral programs that SHU offers to jumpstart your career in this ever-changing field. Reach out to Ed Nassr at nassre@sacredheart.edu or (203) 396-6877.

What is the Economic Impact of Valentine’s Day? (2024)


What is the Economic Impact of Valentine’s Day? ›

According to the National Retail Federation (NRF), 62% of consumers ages 25-34 plan to celebrate Valentine's Day in 2024. The projected total in general for spending is $25.8 billion, while the projection for spending specifically on significant others is $14.2 billion.

What is the economic impact of Valentine's Day? ›

In 2023, Valentine's Day had US consumers spending $26 billion, marking an impressive 8.37% surge from the previous year. Interestingly, there's a noticeable uptick in non-romantic gifts, with $7.1 billion allocated for presents targeting teachers and co-workers, with 32% of consumers splurging on their pets.

How does Valentine's Day benefit businesses? ›

Valentine's Day spending surges

The Valentine's Day spending trend shows consistent growth, making it an attractive opportunity for small businesses to capitalize on. Whether it's gifts, dining, or experiences, people are willing to spend more to make their loved ones feel special during Valentine's Day.

How much money is made during Valentine's Day? ›

Valentine's Day Spending To Hit $26 Billion, As 'Experience Gifts' Grow In Popularity. Contributor. I write about evolving consumer behavior and its impact on retail. As consumer preferences and behaviors evolve, so do centuries-old traditions.

How inflation is impacting Valentine's Day? ›

Although inflation on a meal at home has declined substantially since last year, couples would still face a 1.2% increase in costs. Americans who participate in Valentine's Day festivities paid 4.7% more when purchasing candy for their valentines.

What is the effect of Valentine's day? ›

The psychological effects of Valentine's Day can vary widely depending on individual experiences and circ*mstances. For some, the holiday may serve as a source of joy and connection, strengthening bonds with loved ones. For others, it may exacerbate feelings of loneliness, isolation, or unworthiness.

What is the environmental impact of Valentine's day? ›

On Valentine's Day in the United States alone, 36 million heart-shaped boxes, 180 million cards, 198 million roses, 881 thousand bottles of sparkling wine, and 58 million pounds of chocolate are purchased, resulting in carbon emissions equivalent to driving around the world 3,993 times— according to Waste 360.

How much revenue does Valentine's day boost the economy? ›

Valentine's Day Is an Economic Engine

The National Retail Federation (NRF) estimates that 53% of consumers plan to celebrate Valentine's Day, and $25.8 billion will be spent on the holiday this year, or about $185.81 per household.

Why is Valentine's day beneficial? ›

Valentine's Day is an opportunity to show affection or celebrate romance with cards, flowers, and candy. It's a good day for sweethearts, but it can also be a reminder of how expressions of love and caring may benefit the body.

What companies benefit the most from Valentine's day? ›

Jewelry companies also profit well during the Valentine's Day season. Jewelry is one of the most common categories of gifts given around the holiday. Some popular jewelry retailers during Valentine's Day are Tiffany & Co., Mejuri, Blue Nile and Kay Jewelers. Many also choose Valentine's Day to pop the question.

Which gender spends more money on Valentine's Day? ›

Not only that, Valentine's Day tends to be the most popular day to get engaged. Spending differs by gender and age. Men spend more on Valentine's Day ($200+), while women usually spend less. Millennials are the biggest spenders, with those in that age group planning to spend around $300 on the holiday.

How much will it cost to spend on Valentine's Day in 2024? ›

The National Retail Federation (NRF) estimates that consumers will spend a record $25.8 billion, an average of $185.81 per person, on Valentine's Day in 2024.

Who pays on Valentine's Day? ›

Over 70% of Americans believe the man should pay on the first date. 68% of women expect their male dates to pay, while 78% of men feel responsible for the cost. The person who extends the invitation for a date should pay the tab and tip.

Do prices increase on Valentine's Day? ›

Prices rise around Valentine's Day as all parts of the supply chain, from growers to wholesalers to retailers, are stressed during the buying surge.

What has the biggest impact on inflation? ›

Some of the most common factors include: An imbalance in supply and demand: Inflation tends to increase when consumer demand for goods and services increases, while supply remains limited.

What are the top 7 best selling products or services for Valentine's Day? ›

What to Sell on Valentine's Day?
  • Chocolates/Sweets. Nearly 30% of US adults wished to receive chocolate and sweets on this occasion. ...
  • Flowers. How can we celebrate Valentine's Day without a luxurious bouquet of roses? ...
  • Gift Cards/Vouchers. ...
  • Clothing. ...
  • Perfumes. ...
  • Valentine's Day Cards. ...
  • Jewelry. ...
  • Lingerie.
Jan 16, 2024

What three economic principles are illustrated by Valentine's day? ›

Before getting into the specifics, there are three economic principles that are illustrated by Valentine's Day:
  • The importance of free markets and wealth creation.
  • The logic of gift giving and signaling.
  • The seen and the unseen.
Feb 14, 2021

What are the benefits of Valentine's day? ›

Celebrating Valentine's Day can have positive psychological effects. The act of expressing love and affection releases feel-good hormones, such as oxytocin, dopamine, and serotonin, which contribute to emotional well-being.

Who profits the most from Valentine's day? ›

Flower companies profit enormously. Throughout the year, Americans purchase flowers for occasions including Mother's Day, Easter and New Year's Day. For Valentine's Day, Americans go big — and in 2024, they're expected to spend $2.6 billion on flowers and floral arrangements.

Why is Valentine's day valuable? ›

“Ultimately, V-Day is often a day to express love and affection toward your partner, so for those who have personal reasons for not wanting to celebrate, I encourage them just to see it as another day to express love for the person(s) in their life who deserve their flowers 365 days of the year.” So even if one half of ...


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