Australians are expected to spend 14 per cent more on Halloween festivities this year according to the nation's retail industry body, driven by an increase in both the number of people celebrating the event as well as a higher spend per person.
Research from the Australian Retailers Association (ARA) in collaboration with Roy Morgan led to a forecast that more than 5.3 million Australians will spend a total of $490 million for Halloween in 2023.
This represents 300,000 more people taking part and an additional $60 million to be flowing into the cashiers - real or digital - of retailers.
Those celebrating the event plan to do so in a variety of ways, such as attending or hosting a Halloween themed party, decorating their homes, getting dressed up and going out, or staying home and welcoming trick or treaters.
The average person taking part is expected to increase their spending by 8.1 per cent to $93, and almost half plan to buy a costume (49 per cent) or trick or treat (45 per cent). The survey showed 39 per cent plan to stock up on lollies or chocolate, and 36 per cent plan to decorate the home.
ARA CEO Paul Zahra said the increased spend this year in the face of cost-of-living pressures demonstrates the growing popularity of Halloween in Australia, particularly for adults.
"Halloween is now a global phenomenon and is increasingly becoming a cherished Aussie tradition. It’s a fantastic opportunity for families to have fun and get creative – to go costume shopping, give the home an eery makeover or host a party,” Zahra said.
“It’s a welcome break from routine and a chance to get together with friends and loved ones to do something fun.
"Retailers are also coming to the party with themed windows and store displays as part of big promotional push in the lead up to October 31."
He described the celebrations as a chance for people to "let their hair down and partake in some spooky silliness during this challenging economic period"
"It’s also important for retailers to build sales momentum in the run up to Christmas," he said.
As the marquee tradition continues to gain traction in Australia, the National Retail Federation in the US is expecting a record $12.2 billion spend.
"Halloween is obviously a big deal in the United States – historically tied to the arrival of Irish immigrants bringing the tradition with them in the 1800s. It is increasingly cementing its place in Australian culture due to its pop culture prominence,” Zahra added.
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