New research by real-time consumer insights platform Suzy has found 82% of Americans surveyed plan to celebrate Halloween at home this year due to the pandemic, with 45% of respondents considering Zoom Halloween parties.
According to its latest report: ‘The State of the Consumer: Halloween in a Haunted Year’, based on responses from 1,000 US consumers, Suzy found that watching Halloween-themed movies (43%) is considered more important this year than dressing up in costumes (38%).
The top three Halloween activities people plan to do in 2020 are:
1. Decorate house/yard (63%)
2. Watch a Halloween-themed movie (62%)
3. Make Halloween-themed foods or drinks (58%)
The report also revealed 80% of consumers plan to purchase the same amount of Halloween candy this year, if not more, although half (50%) will be surprised to get trick-or-treaters.
This finding is further supported by candy industry sales, which are up 13% this Halloween season over the past four weeks, compared to this time last year.
The report quoted Christopher Gindlesperger, Senior Vice President of Public Affairs and Communications at the National Confectioners Association (NCA), who said: “Halloween may have to be at a distance or at home, but that doesn’t mean Halloween is not happening.”
In addition, Suzy’s report found 74%of young parents feel Halloween is more important this year than ever.
“Given that this year has significantly changed how we socially gather to celebrate events, consumers are now set on making this Halloween the best they can, to create a sense of normalcy for their children,” said Suzy President, Avi Savar.
“These are valuable insights about how the world around us is changing in the wake of the pandemic, and how Americans are creatively adapting to the ‘new normal’.”
Writing in the New York Times, Aaron E Carroll, professor of paediatrics at Indiana University School of Medicine, urged authorities to ‘let kids have Halloween’.
Trick or treating
“… if I had to design an activity for children that might be safe during a pandemic, I’m not sure that I could do a better job than trick-or-treating. It’s outside. It can be socially distanced. The food is individually wrapped (before anyone partakes, parents can wipe the candies down while kids wash their hands). It’s the one night a year when kids will not argue at all about wearing masks,” he said.
John Downs, president & CEO of the National Confectioners Association, also claimed ‘Americans are ready for Halloween’.
“Hyperlocal decision-making will determine whether this Halloween season means trick-or-treating with the appropriate safety precautions, more candy bowl moments at home with family and close friends, or just more time for celebrating the season in October,” he said.