140 million expected to shop through the Thanksgiving weekend
It is no secret that the upcoming holiday weekend is traditionally a big one in terms of shopping, and this year is no exception. Six in 10 Americans are expected to hit the stores Thursday, Friday, Saturday or Sunday, according to a survey by the National Retail Federation (NRF).
"It seems the same amount of people this year compared to last year are gearing up for the big holiday weekend, but it remains to be seen if those on the fence will actually equate to real dollars for retailers or if people are going to sit this weekend out and wait until later in the season to avoid the holiday crowds or get a deeper discount," said Kathy Grannis, spokesperson for the federation.
In fact, 67.6 million holiday shoppers say they will shop, down slightly from 69.4 million who planned to do so last year and 72.5 million say they will wait and see if the deals are worth it before they decide.
As for when people plan to hit the stores, 18.3 percent say they will check out retailer's Thanksgiving Day deals and shop on Thursday, while 68.2 percent will shop on Black Friday. Two in five will shop on Saturday and one in five will shop on Sunday.
"Black Friday hands down is still the biggest day of the year for retailers in terms of traffic and sometimes sales," Grannis said.
Despite the NRF's numbers, a recent report by Bankrate.com finds that most Americans will not shop on either Black Friday or Cyber Monday with the exception of millennials. Despite their tech-savvy reputation, millennials are more likely to shop in stores on Black Friday than online and they are more likely to go into the store that day than older adults. They are also the most likely to shop online on both days, but by a smaller margin.
According to Bankrate.com, just 28 percent of Americans plan to shop in a store on Black Friday. Including online shoppers, 40 percent of Americans expect to do some holiday shopping on Black Friday.
"Consumers are well aware that deep discounts will be offered throughout the holiday shopping season," said Bankrate.com analyst Jeanine Skowronski, in a press release emailed on Nov. 19. "They don't necessarily need to brave the Black Friday crowds to score them."
As for Cyber Monday, only one in four Americans plan to make an online purchase, with the average planned expenditure of $361. Men are more likely than women to shop on Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
Overall, the average person is expected to spend $804.42 on holiday gifts this year, up nearly 5 percent from 2013, according to a survey released on Oct. 16 by the NRF.
The survey found consumers will spend an average of $459.87 on gifts for their family, up 6.5 percent from $432.00 last year, and $80.00 on gifts for friends, up from $75.00 last year. Those celebrating the holidays will also spend more on gifts for their co-workers and others like their babysitter and even their pets.