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2024 Halloween Facts, Trends and Statistics: Spending, Costume Choices and More

The observance of Halloween, which dates back to Celtic rituals thousands of years ago (see this page for the history of Halloween), has long been associated with images of witches, ghosts, devils and hobgoblins. In the United States, the first official citywide Halloween celebration occurred in Anoka, Minn., in 1921. Over the years, Halloween customs and rituals have changed dramatically. Today, many of the young and young at heart take a more light-spirited approach. They don scary disguises or ones that may bring on smiles when they go door to door for treats, or attend or host a Halloween party. And the tradition has spread to other countries: Japan and France have ever-growing Halloween parties and activities.

half the population participates in Halloween

About 180 million people in the US celebrated Halloween in 2019, 2020 , with the COVID Grinchcanceling trick or treating saw it drop. 2022 was a big rebound year, easily 190 million, above the 180 million Americans took part in Halloween festivities in 2018 and 179 million in 2017, up from 171 million Americans celebrated Halloween in 2016 and 157 million Americans celebrated Halloween in 2015. The top costume for children is usually an action hero or superhero, and the top choice for adult women is a witch. Pets are also dressed up as 10 percent of consumers put their dog or cat in a pumpkin costume.

2023 will probably continue the rebound.  At least with regard to trick or treating. How will the extremely high gas, food and other prices from the inflation of the past 2 years affect it, is difficult to say.

Spending on Halloween in 2024 is likely to be down from 2022 ($10.6 billion) and 2019 (which was $8.8 billion) but up from the covid years, 2020 ($8 billion), about even with 2021 - $10.1 billion)

2023 early estimate: $10 billion

It's really hard to tell this year because inflation has been so persistently high since 2020 that many will cut back, while the higher prices may make the overall spend flat.


  • Candy, costume, gas, food prices are WAY up!
  • Income is flat for most families.
  • Consumer sentiment is anxious, many perceive the economy is in trouble
  • Crime in many areas has skyrocketed - will people feel safe taking their children trick or treating?


  • Consumers are most likely still rebounding from Covid and wanting to return to normal


 Each consumer is likely to cut back on the quantity of purchases , But since inflation has been so extremely high for two years, the overall spend should remain about the same. Consumers will simply get less for their money.

Generational Trends

A Harris poll cited in this CNBC story says that

  • Younger people (Millennia's) are expected to spend $183 each on candy, costumes, decorations and miscellaneous items.
  • Generation X'ers are expected to spend about $70 each and
  • Baby boomers only $23 each

In 2018, according to

  • The average American spent $185.50 on Halloween in 2018. This figure is up from 2017's: $169.81
  • Within that total expenditure,
    $76.05 (41%) will go towards candy,
    $66.78 (36%) will go towards costumes, and
    $42.67 (23%) will go towards decorations

The National Retail Federation (NRF) puts the figure lower, saying Individuals are planning to spend an average of $86.79, up from 2017’s $86.13.

I can't say which figure is more valid; perhaps, Lendedu uses a per household figure and NRF is per adult consumer? Intuitively, that could make sense, because I've never spent $185 on Halloween ever...but, if I add up my kid's costumes, decorations and candy, $185 could be plausible.

In 2017, according to the National Retail Federation (NRF)

  • 71% of those surveyed by the National Retail Federation handed out candy,
  • 49% decorated
  • 48% wore a costume
  • 46% carved a pumpkin,
  • 35% threw or attended a party
  • 23% visited a haunted house, and
  • 16% dress up their pets (most often as a pumpkin).(ref) NRF Halloween spending 2022


All of these percentages are up substantially from previous years. There was a dip during the covid lockdowns but it has rebounded since.The spend is an average $82.93, up from 2015's $74.34 on decorations, candy, costumes and more. And the numbers really add up: according to the NRF survey, Americans are expected to spend $2.6 billion just on Halloween costumes for adults, children and pets. Total spending in 2016 - including candy and decorations - is expected to reach $8.4 billion according to the history of NRF's annual survey. Contrast that with 2010 when consumers spent $66.28 per person—which for a total of approximately $5.8 billion—on Halloween costumes, cards, and candy. And that was up from $56.31 in 2009. To see this data in graphs, click here!

View spending survey results here.

Below are some interesting numbers and statistics regarding Halloween in the United States. You may also want to see this page for similar information about pumpkin production in the U.S.

The trend in spending by US consumers on Halloween follows the economy in general, but overall is always upwards. Here's the NRF's graph (I think 2016 will end up being UP even more- come back next year to see if I'm right):.

"Trick or Treat!"NRF 2016 Halloween Spending chart

36.1 million - The estimated number of potential trick-or-treaters in 2006 (the most current year for which data is available) children 5 to 13 — across the United States, down 45,000 from 2005. Of course, many other children — older than 13, and younger than 5 — also go trick-or-treating.

109.6 million - Number of occupied housing units across the nation in 2006 (the most current year for which data is available) all potential stops for trick-or-treaters.

93% - Percentage of households who consider their neighborhood safe. In addition, 78 percent said they were not afraid to walk alone at night. (Source: Extended Measures of Well-Being: Living Conditions in the United States, 2003, at

Jack-O'-Lanterns and Pumpkin Pies

1 billion pounds - Total production of major pumpkin-producing states in 2006. Illinois led the country by producing 492 million pounds of the vined orange gourd. Pumpkin patches in California, Ohio and Pennsylvania also provided lots of pumpkins: Each state produced at least 100 million pounds. The value of all pumpkins produced by major pumpkin-producing states was $101 million. Photo from the U.S. Census Bureau

Where to Spend Halloween?

Some places around the country that may put you in the Halloween mood are:

Candy and Costumes

In 2016, the top selling costumes for children are action/superhero, princess, animal, Batman character and a Star Wars character.

The top five costumes for adults are a Batman character, a witch, and animal, a superhero, and a vampire.
Also popular are, for boys, Zombies, Minions, Star Wars and for girls Disney's Frozen characters, especially Princess Elena.

Top costumes last year, according to the National Retail Federation:

Top 10 Children's Costumes - Recent Years
2019 rank 2017 rank Where to get
2022 Rank Children   Children
1 Spiderman 6 4
2 Princess (generic) 1 2
3 Witch 5 6
4 Ghost 8 9
5 Batman 3 2
6 Pumpkin NR NR
7 Zombie NR NR
8 Vampire NR NR
9 Pirate 9 NR
10 Superman Superhero 2 1  
NR Character from Star Wars 4 5  
 NR Avengers character (excluding Spider-Man) 7 7  
NR Disney Princess 10 8  
NR Animal (Dog, Cat, etc) NR 3  
NR Wonder Woman NR 10  
Top 10 Adult Costumes - This Year and Previous Years  
2019 data 2017 rank 2015 rank  
2019 Rank Adults Adults Adults  
1 Witch 1 8
2 Vampire 7 1
3 Character from Batman 2 3
4 Pirate 4 8
5 Avengers character (excluding Spider-Man)
6 DC superhero (excluding Batman, Wonderwoman, and Star Wars) 8 NR
7 Star Wars character NR
8 Ghost
9 Superhero (any of them) 6 5
10 Clown
NR Villain from a Slasher Movie 9 NR  
NR Animal (Dog, Cat, etc) 3 2  
NR Wonder Woman 10 NR  

Top 10 Pet Costumes - This Year and Previous Years
2019 Rank Pets 2017 Rank
1 Pumpkin 1
2 Hot dog 2
3 Bumblebee 4
4 Devil 5
5 Cat 8
6 Dog 7 (tie)
7 Lion 7 (tie)
8 Character from a Star Wars movie 10
9 Superhero 9
10 Ghost 7
NR Witch 9

2015's top costumes were very similar.

For comparison, here's the list from 2013:

Top Adult Costumes

Top Children's Costumes

Top Pet Costumes

1. Witch

1. Princess

1. Pumpkin

2. Batman character

2. Animal

2. Hot dog

3. Vampire

3. Batman character

3. (T) Cat

4. Zombie

4. Action/super hero

3. (T) Devil

5. Pirate

5. Spider-Man

4. Witch

6. Action/super hero

6. Witch

5. Superman

7. Superman

7. Zombie

6. Dog

8. Dracula

8. Disney princess

7. Bowties/fancy collar

9. Cat

9. Superman

8. Bee

10. Scary costume/mask

10. Fairy

9. (T) Batman

9. (T) Vampire

10. Ghost

Sources and references

  1. NRF (National Retail Federation
  2. CNBC
  3. Halloween.” National Confectioners Association. Accessed: September 30, 2010.
  4. Rogers, Nicholas (2002). "Samhain and the Celtic Origins of Halloween". Halloween: From Pagan Ritual to Party Night, pp.11-21. New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-516896-8
  5. Roger, Nichola (2002). Halloween: From Pagan Ritual to Party Night. Oxford University Press. pp. 28-30. ISBN 0-19-514691-3.
  6. Arnold, Bettina (2001-10-31). "Bettina Arnold - Halloween Lecture: Halloween Customs in the Celtic World" . Halloween Inaugural Celebration. University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee: Center for Celtic Studies. . Retrieved 2007-10-16.
  7. Skal, David J. (2002). Death Makes a Holiday: A Cultural History of Halloween, p.34. New York: Bloomsbury. ISBN 1-58234-230-X.
  8. Pope John Paul, July 1994, conversation with the author in Rome, Italy
  9. US Census Bureau

Other fun and useful Halloween information

Halloween Costumes

Here are some of the most popular Halloween costumes for children this year. For more choices, see our Halloween costumes pages.

You may find these websites useful!

Here's the quick list to related farms for PYO, Honey, Pumpkins, Christmas trees, etc.:



Find Related Information and Resources Here!

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