PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Many consumers plan on spending a pretty penny this Valentine’s Day.
According to the National Retailer Federation and Prosper Insights & Analytics, U.S. consumers are expected to spend an average $136.57, which is actually down from last year’s record high of $146.84.
Analysts say total spending is expected to reach $18.2 billion, down from $19.7 billion last year, which was also a record.
“Valentine’s Day continues to be a popular gift-giving occasion even if consumers are being more frugal this year,” NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said.
This year’s survey found consumers plan to spend an average $85.21 on their significant other, $26.59 on family members, $6.56 on children’s classmates and teachers, $6.51 on friends, $4.27 on coworkers, and $4.44 on pets. Good for Fido.
Analysts say consumers plan to spend $4.3 billion on jewelry (given by 19 percent of shoppers), $3.8 billion on an evening out (37 percent), $2 billion on flowers (35 percent), $1.9 billion on clothing (19 percent), $1.7 billion on candy (50 percent), $1.4 billion on gift cards/gift certificates (16 percent) and $1 billion on greeting cards (47 percent).
When it comes to the really expensive items, “no, not with three kids,” joked Ana Smith of South Philadelphia.
They say another popular gift this year is the “gift of experience” such as concert tickets or going to a sporting event. The survey found while 40 percent of consumers want an experience gift, only 24 percent plan on giving one.
“It’s the time to show or tell somebody you love them or that they are special,” said Cindy Cotellessa of Cherry Hill.
“I think it’s going in a good direction, they shouldn’t be spending so much money,” said Africa Mathis of Galloway, New Jersey.