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56% of Americans Have to Cut Down on Christmas Spending But Many Won’t Compromise on Christmas Tree

Published: 11/14/2022

As inflation continues to wreak havoc on consumers’ wallets, tree growers report that the Christmas tree industry won’t be spared. Although, thankfully, there won’t be a Christmas tree supply shortage this year, recent reports advise shoppers to expect to pay around 15% more for their tree this holiday season.

We wanted to find out how inflation is affecting Americans’ plans for their Christmas trees this year, so in November, surveyed 1,250 people who celebrate Christmas in the U.S.

The results:

  • 7% more Americans plan to buy real Christmas trees this year vs last year
  • Nearly 1 in 5 are willing to pay $200 or more for their Christmas tree
  • 56% say they plan to cut down on other Christmas spending due to inflation
  • Nearly 3 in 4 will put a budget on gifts, averaging around $100 less than last year

More Americans Plan to Buy a Real Tree This Year Despite Rising Prices

Despite tree growers reporting rising costs of Christmas trees, the holiday spirit remains strong among Christmas celebrators. Survey results show a 7% increase in the number of Americans who plan to buy a real tree this year vs those who bought a real tree last year.

This determination to get a real tree despite a tough financial year makes sense when you consider that nearly two-thirds (62%) of survey respondents say having a Christmas tree is ‘very’ important to them.

“Having a Christmas tree is very important to our family, but the tradition of choosing a tree together is just as important. I have never not had a Christmas tree, but it would definitely negatively impact my ability to enjoy the holiday,” explained Brianna Leonhard.

“The lights provide a sense of peace and joy that other decorations do not. It is the centerpiece of our Christmas display in our living room. We are willing and plan to pay an increased price for a Christmas tree. We also have a backup artificial tree that we store in our attic just in case we are unable to find a real tree,” she continued.

Additionally, 53% of respondents say they will have an artificial Christmas tree, while 8% don’t plan to have any sort of tree this year.


Nearly 1 in 5 Are Willing to Pay $200+ for a Real Christmas Tree

Americans don’t plan to reduce spending on Christmas trees this holiday season, as there was no notable difference between reported spending on real trees last year and how much respondents are willing to spend this year.

“In some cases, it’s worth it to pay the increased prices for Christmas trees. However, it isn’t always necessary,” advised Zack DeAngelis, founder of Tree Journey.

“For those looking to get a real Christmas tree from a farm, I recommend asking if there’s any discount for cutting or wrapping the tree yourself. The farm will most likely have certain trees that haven’t grown well and are less desirable. These can cost even less, which can help you save more if you’re in a pinch,” he continued.

Of those who are planning to buy a real tree this year, nearly 1 in 5 respondents (18%) say they are willing to spend $200 or more on their tree. Though of course prices change depending on the size of the tree, the average cost of a tree in past years was typically around $100 across various retailers, meaning this group is willing to spend at least double to ensure they have a real tree this year.

The largest group of respondents also remained consistent when it comes to the size of their Christmas trees: they bought a 6 ft. – 7 ft. tree last year and plan to get the same size this year. However, since tree prices are on the rise, shoppers may find that they aren’t able to afford as big of a tree as last year if they aren’t willing to shell out a little more.

Of the group of respondents that say they plan to have neither a real nor an artificial tree, the top reason cited was that they can’t afford a tree this year.


56% Plan to Cut Down on Christmas Spending Due to Inflation

Despite showing a willingness to continue paying for Christmas trees, more than half of survey respondents say they will need to cut down on their holiday spending this year due to inflation.

“Inflation has definitely affected my Christmas plans. I used to buy a lot of presents for my kids and grandkids, but this year I am going to have to be more selective and purchase fewer gifts,” said William Perry. “I’m also going to have to be careful about how much I spend on food and decorations. Overall, it’s going to be a more frugal Christmas than in years past.”

When asked how they plan to reduce their spending, 72% of respondents say they will put a budget on gifts, 13% will only give handmade gifts this year, and 9% plan to eschew gifts altogether.

Twenty-five percent of respondents say they spent $200 or less on Christmas last year, while 34% plan to keep their spending under $200 this year, a nearly 10-point increase.

Additionally, the largest group of respondents say they bought presents for 3-4 people last year, but plan to only buy presents for 2-3 people this year.

“Our family now buys presents based on a system that limits how much each of us can spend,” commented Dee Broughton. “We used to go CRAZY with the presents. We now have a four-gift rule (there are five of us who exchange gifts). We purchase ONE gift for each member of our family,” she explained.



This survey was commissioned by and conducted online by the survey platform Pollfish on November 9, 2022. In total, 1,250 participants in the U.S. were surveyed. All participants had to pass quality checks to ensure the accuracy of results and a screening question to ensure they celebrate Christmas. For full survey results, please contact [email protected].