Thanksgiving Spending 2023: The Good, The Bad, and the Turkey
With another Turkey Day right around the corner, we here at Vested are thankful for a lot this year, like great clients, a growing team, and the Fed continuing to pause rate hikes. One of the things we’re most grateful for? Catching a break in the price of turkey.
Gobbling Up the Savings
In 2022, amidst a devastating wave of avian flu affecting major poultry crops across the country, turkey costs rose 20% to $1.81 per pound, which would run the average household $27.15 for a 15-pound bird.
According to the American Farm Bureau Federation, these issues have largely been resolved. While inflation continues to affect the price of just about everything, its pace has slowed, and the combined effect here is an overall drop in the price of turkey over last year. In 2023, the average turkey will run $1.27 per pound, or $19.05 for a full bird. That’s roughly a savings of $8 per turkey over last year.
Families looking to stretch their dollars even further might opt for boneless, skinless turkey breast. The price for these is down a whopping 61% over last year. While faster and easier to cook, these may not impress your mother-in-law quite as much, so exercise your best judgment when deciding your meal budget.
Maybe Slide on the Sides?
While turkey prices are closer to what we saw in 2021, inflation is still impacting the prices of most side staples, which could offset the savings. Side dishes will run about 4% more expensive this year over 2022, due in large part to labor and food production costs, which are up 4.1%.
The net result is that the cost of Thanksgiving dinner this year may be slightly higher than last, but not nearly as dramatic of an increase between 2021 and 2022. 25% of participating households expect to spend between $101 and $200 for their meal feeding up to 10 people. You might be able to save a little by leaving the mini marshmallows out of the sweet potato casserole, but then, what’s the point?
Home is Where the Heart is, But Probably Not Dinner
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, 2020 and 2021 saw record-low levels of holiday travel. In 2022 we saw a slight bounceback, particularly in the “revenge travel” subset of individuals taking their first opportunity in two years to get out of the country.
In 2023, research from Deloitte suggests that Thanksgiving travel will be back in a big way. Intent to travel between Thanksgiving and New Years is up across all age and income levels, including Boomers who largely sat out 2022. The survey shows that this year, people aren’t limiting travel just to close family, but will also return to visiting with friend groups for the infamous (and let’s be fair, way more fun than spending the day with Uncle Fred) Friendsgiving celebration. This will likely have a large impact on the hospitality sector to close out the year as 56% of travelers plan to stay in hotels.
Wishing You and Yours a Happy Thanksgiving
Whether you’re doing a quiet holiday at home, hosting a houseful of relatives, or hitting the road to visit with kith and kin, we at Vested wish a very happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.