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Be careful if you’re using fireworks during July Fourth holiday

Facts and figures for July Fourth 2016

Fireworks Stand IMG_8911What are your plans for the Fourth of July this year?

Here’s a look what Americans will be doing to celebrate the holiday plus some facts on the important day.

Travel

Nearly 43 million Americans will travel this Independence Day weekend, AAA predicts.

This is the highest Fourth of July travel volume on record and 5 million more travelers compared to Memorial Day weekend. Lower gas prices are encouraging people to travel more.

Eighty-four percent of holiday travelers – more than 36 million people – will drive to their Independence Day destinations, an increase of 1.2 percent over last year. Air travel is expected to increase 2.2 percent over last year, with 3.3 million Americans flying this Independence Day.

Travel by other modes of transportation, including cruises, trains, and buses, will increase two percent to 3.3 million travelers.

Spending

The average family will spend about the same on Independence Day cookouts and picnics this year as last, but with more Americans celebrating the holiday, total spending should be slightly higher, according to a survey prepared for the National Retail Federation.

The survey found that an estimated 214 million people plan to celebrate the holiday, which will result an expected total spending of $6.8 billion, up 1.4 percent from last year.

Consumers will spend an average of $71.34 per household on food for barbecues and picnics, about the same as last year’s $71.23.

Among those surveyed, 65 percent plan to attend a cookout/barbecue/picnic while 43 percent will watch fireworks or join another community celebration and 12 percent will attend a parade.

The survey also found that American families are well-stocked on patriotic items: Nearly two-thirds own a U.S. flag, half own patriotic-themed apparel such as T-shirts and hats, and a third own patriotic decorations. However, 25 percent plan to purchase more of these items for the holiday.

Facts

In a report, “Fourth of July 2016 By The Numbers,” WalletHub, a personal finance website, facts on the holiday, plus a Q&A on the do’s and don’ts of holiday spending. Highlights from the report are:

  • 150 million – Hot dogs are consumed each July 4 holiday.
  • 700 million pounds – Of chicken are purchased in the week prior to July 4.
  • $4.4 million – Annual value of imported American flags, most of which are made in China.
  • $324-plus million – Value of annual fireworks imports to the United States, most from China.
  •  67% – Of all annual fireworks injuries take place within a month of July 4.

Sales

Discounts of up to 97 percent will be available at Independence Day sales, according WalletHub Fourth of July report.

WalletHub compared the discounts offered by 21 of the largest U.S. retailers, resulting in a list of 370 savings opportunities worth nearly $63,000. Here are some of the highlights:

Save 50%-plus           

  •  JCPenney – Andora 5-Pc. Outdoor Dining Set: 71 percent off.
  •  Cymax – Armen Living Skyline Bonded Leather Sofa in Smoke: 59 percent off.
  •  Target – Canon EOS Rebel T5 II Kit 18MP Digital SLR Camera with EF-S 18-55mm Lens: 52 percent off.
  •  Office Depot – Lenovo Ideapad Laptop with Intel Core i3 Processor: 36% off.
  •  Sears – Kenmore 27.6 cu. ft. French Door Refrigerator: 50 percent off.
  •  Best Buy – KitchenAid - Professional 5 Plus Series Stand Mixer - Empire Red: 50 percent off.

Save 25%-plus

  •  Sears – Kenmore 24" Built-In Dishwasher w/PowerWave Spray Arm: 43 percent off.
  •  Sears – Ty Pennington Style Parkside 4 Piece Deep Seating Set: 41 percent off.
  •  Office Depot – Lenovo Ideapad Laptop with Intel Core 13 Processor: 36 percent off.
  •  Exchange – Sony 4K LED Smart TV, 65": 31 percent off.
  •  KMART – Kenmore Electric Dryer: 29 percent off.
Copyright 2016, Rita R. Robison, Consumer Specialist

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