The Majority of Valentine's Day Celebrants Plan to Shop a Week or Less Before, But Many Wait Until February 13 or 14 to Purchase Gifts Reports NPD

Chicago, February 6, 2013  —  As soon as Christmas tears down at retail Valentine’s Day goes up, yet 78 percent of those who celebrate Valentine’s Day plan to shop a week or less before Cupid’s arrows fly, and still many wait until February 13 or 14 to purchase, finds  recent snacking research by The NPD Group, a leading global information company.  Women do not begin their Valentine’s Day shopping much earlier than men; one in three female buyers (32 percent) wraps up her shopping February 13 or 14 and 47 percent of men made their final Valentine’s Day purchase on February 13 or 14, according to NPD’s SnackTrack® Holidays Valentine’s Day Profile.

An estimated 185 million individuals – including 70 million women and 59 million men – celebrate Valentine’s Day. While a nearly universal 92 percent of celebrating adults indicated plans to get someone a Valentine’s Day gift, four of five celebrants (80 percent) actually followed through and gave one, reports NPD’s snacking research.  Even outpacing greeting cards, the most common gift was candy, given by 38 percent of adults and 47 percent of teen gifters.  By a wide margin, the leading candy was boxed chocolates, given by 55 percent of adult candy buyers and 45 percent of teens.  Supermarkets and discount stores are the primary channels for Valentine’s Day purchases. Consumers say that they choose these channels for convenience purposes.  

Valentine’s Day Gift Purchases
% of Celebrants
Adult n = 1,900 and Teens n = 449

Source: The NPD Group/SnackTrack® Holidays Valentine’s Day Profile

“With the shopping cycle more compressed for Valentine’s Day than for Christmas, there is a heightened need for a simplified shopping experience,” says Darren Seifer, food and beverage industry analyst. “Having Valentine’s Day items all in one spot and offering all-in-one bundles of cards and gifts will help these last minute shoppers.” 



The NPD Group’s SnackTrack® is an online survey that continually tracks consumption of packaged snack foods from all channels that are eaten at-home and away-from-home, resulting in over 350,000 snack food occasions per year. Every day, SnackTrack panelists (adults and children) report the snack foods they ate “yesterday,” and identify brand, flavor, and attributes, as well as information about the consumption situation and motivations for choosing their snack foods.


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