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Merry Christmas to all

Facts and figures for the holidays 2023

Shopping-mall-522619_640Millions of people around the world are excited about the holidays. Shopping for gifts, gathering with friends and family, and attending religious events heighten excitement this time of year.


Americans are expected to spend between 3 percent and 4 percent more in 2023 than last year, about $957.3 billion and $966.6 billion, according to a survey conducted for the National Retail Federation.

That’s about $875 per person on core holiday items including gifts, decorations, food, and other holiday-related purchases.

Another survey by WalletHub, a personal finance website, asked consumers what they were planning to buy this holiday season, how much they were going to spend, and how the economy would affect holiday shopping. Some highlights are:

  • Skipping presents: More than one in three Americans are foregoing gifts this year due to inflation.
  • Lingering holiday debt: Nearly one in four Americans still have holiday debt from last year.
  • New credit card: Nearly one in five people will apply for a new credit card to help with holiday shopping.
  • Inflation impacting charity: Nearly half of Americans say their charitable giving is affected by inflation.
  • Reduced holiday spending: 28 percent of people will spend less than last year on their holiday shopping.
  • Social media influence: 23 percent of Americans are planning to make a holiday purchase based on social media.

Clothing, gift cards, and electronics top the list of the most popular gifts consumers plan to buy followed by toys, home goods, beauty supplies, jewelry, sporting goods, alcoholic beverages, and experiences, according to Statista, an online research company.

A survey by the research company pwc, found millennials – many in their peak earning years – are still at the top of the holiday spending heap. They’ll spend $1,275 for the holidays, 15 percent more than 2022 and the widest percentage increase of any age group.


AAA projects 115.2 million travelers will head 50 miles or more from home over the 10-day year-end holiday travel period. This year’s total number of domestic travelers is a 2.2 percent increase over last year and the second highest year-end travel forecast since 2000, when AAA began tracking holiday travel.

The busiest is 2019 with 119 million travelers. 

The top domestic destinations are Orlando, Florida; Anaheim, California; and Chicago, Illinois. The most popular international destinations are London, England; St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands; and Aruba.

Holiday names

There are many holiday-sounding places in the United States, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. For example, more than a dozen areas have Holly in their names, including Holly Pond, Alabama, population 853; Holly Grove, Arkansas, 447; Holly, Colorado, 822; Holly Hill, Florida, 13,076; Holly Springs, Georgia, 18,739; Holly Village, Michigan, 5,927; Holly Springs, Mississippi, 6,823; Mount Holly, North Carolina, 18,170; and Holiday Hills, Illinois, 608.

There’s also Snowflake, Arizona, 6,524; Santa Claus, Indiana, 2,601; North Pole, Alaska, 2,373; Noel, Missouri, 2,148; Joy, Illinois, 362; Dasher, Georgia, 918; Rudolph, Wisconsin, 432; and Garland, Texas, 240,854.

Happy holidays one and all. May your days be merry and bright.


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