How much will Americans spend on Jack-o’-Lanterns this Halloween?

Americans are expected to spend $708 million on pumpkins for carving into jack-o-lanterns in 2021

Well good gourd, it’s Fall y’all. Coronavirus might be the scariest thing this year and though it puts the kibosh on some things like Halloween parties and haunted houses, pumpkin carving is A-ok. In 2021, Finder estimates that 147 million Americans (roughly 44% of the population) plan to have a gourd ole’ time buying a pumpkin to make homemade jack-o-lanterns, which is slightly more than 152 million (46%) in 2020.

With Americans forecast to spend $10.14 billion on All Saints’ Day, according to the National Retail Federation, 2021 will see Americans spending roughly $2.09 billion (26%) more than the $8.05 billion they were forecast to spend in 2020.

The cost of a pumpkin is up, with prices higher than the last several years. In 2021, the cost of the average pumpkin is $4.83, up from $4.18 in 2020 — a 15.7% increase. Even with the slightly lower number of Americans planning to carve out some time in their schedules for Jack-o-lanterns this year, the increase in the cost of a pumpkin means that Americans are projected to be spending approximately $708 million on pumpkins in 2021. This is an increase of about $21 million (3.1%) from the $686 million just a year ago.

Here’s how the total adds up:

Average price of a pumpkin$4.83
Percentage of Americans planning to carve pumpkins 44%
Number of Americans that plan to carve pumpkins 146,435,047
Total jack-o-lantern expenditure $707,983,104

Source: finder.com, United States Department of Agriculture, U.S. Department of Commerce, National Retail Federation

Time to get spooky

Overall, Halloween 2021 is expected to be a more expensive day with the National Retail Federation predicting total spending on Halloween to reach $10.14 billion, an 26% increase from $8.05 billion last year.

Halloween activityPercentage of Americans participating
Hand out candy 66%
Decorate home or yard 52%
Dress in costume 46%
Carve pumpkin 44%
Throw or attend a party 25%
Take children trick-or-treating 25%
Dress pet(s) in costume 20%
Visit haunted house 18%

Source: National Retail Federation, finder.com

How are Americans celebrating Halloween this year compared to last year?

Halloween activityPercentage of Americans participating in 2019Percentage of Americans participating in 2020Percentage of Americans participating in 2021
Hand out candy 69% 62% 66%
Decorate home or yard 49% 53% 52%
Dress in costume 47% 46% 46%
Carve pumpkin 44% 46% 44%
Throw or attend a party 32% 22% 25%
Take their child trick-or-treating 29% 23% 25%
Visit haunted house 22% 15% 18%
Dress pet in costume 17% 18% 20%

Source: National Retail Federation, finder.com

How can you save on Halloween?

“While we’re seeing inflation in the cost of pumpkins this year, it doesn’t have to ruin your Halloween fun. Consider recycling old clothes or shopping at thrift stores to create budget-friendly costumes and party decorations. Enjoy what’s available for free in your community, such as driving to see the fall leaves change color, going to a fall festival, or picking apples. Also, remember not to overspend on candy for trick-or-treaters if you don’t expect to have as many knocking on your door this year,” says Laura Adams, Finance Analyst at finder.com.

How to choose the ideal pumpkin for carving

Comparing the cost of a jack-o-lantern over time

Let’s take a closer look

The average price of a pumpkin has increased by 15.7% in 2021, to $4.83 from 2020’s $4.18. The proportion of Americans planning to carve pumpkins has decreased two percentage points, from 46% to 44%. This higher price average, even with a lower percentage of pumpkin carvers in 2020, means that total jack-o-lantern expenditure is expected to increase by 3.1%, $21 million more than last year.

202120202019
FiguresYoY percentage changeFiguresYoY percentage changeFiguresYoY percentage change
Average price of a pumpkin$4.8315.7%$4.183.5%$4.043.9%
Percentage of Americans planning to carve pumpkins44%N/A46%N/A44%N/A
Number of Americans that plan to carve pumpkins146,435,047-3.63%151,947,7274.73%145,089,009-1.89%
Total jack-o-lantern expenditure$707,983,1043.09%$686,736,43817.16%$586,159,5971.89%

Source: finder.com, United States Department of Agriculture, National Retail Federation

Jack-o-lantern fun facts

  • 80% of the pumpkin supply in the United States is available in October.
  • Jack-o-lanterns are believed to have originated in Ireland in the 19th century.
  • The world’s largest jack-o-lantern was carved into the Guinness World Records on October 31, 2010, by Scott Cully in Bronx, New York, weighing 1,810.5 pounds (821.23kg).
    Susannah Binsted headshot

    For all media inquiries, please contact:

    Susannah Binsted, Head of Public Relations United States

    E: uspr@finder.com

    /in/susannah-binsted-07442743/ /susannahbinsted/

    More guides on Finder

    Ask an Expert

    You are about to post a question on finder.com:

    • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
    • finder.com is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
    • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
    • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

    Finder.com provides guides and information on a range of products and services. Because our content is not financial advice, we suggest talking with a professional before you make any decision.

    By submitting your comment or question, you agree to our Privacy and Cookies Policy and finder.com Terms of Use.

    Questions and responses on finder.com are not provided, paid for or otherwise endorsed by any bank or brand. These banks and brands are not responsible for ensuring that comments are answered or accurate.
    Go to site