Americans expected to pay more for Valentine’s Day gifts—as inflation raises prices

NOW: Americans expected to pay more for Valentine’s Day gifts—as inflation raises prices

BERRIEN COUNTY, Mich. – February 13 and 14 tend to be some of the busiest days for the staff at Crystal Springs Florist in Benton Harbor, who say the only day that’s busier is Mother’s Day.

“Everybody wants their fresh arrangements of roses on Valentine’s Day,” said Randy Siegert— general manager at the flower shop, and a third generation employee. His family first opened the doors back in 1947 and continue to offer a wide assortment of flowers and gifts for the holidays.

“Daisies and carnations and lilies—we do a lot of that,” he said. “Hydrangeas—we do a lot with those. But roses are pretty much the number one seller.”

Down in Niles, the staff at Veni’s Sweet Shop—which has been opened since the 1920s—have been working around the clock to fill their holiday orders.

“We actually came in at 6:00 AM the last two days to start working on berries. The chocolate covered strawberries are just a huge seller around Valentine’s Day,” said general manager Linda Skwarcan. “We sell them year round, by order, but nothing compared to the volume we do today and tomorrow.”

But while both businesses see an uptick in customers this time of year, there is concern over the rising costs for Valentine’s day shoppers.

According to the National Retail Federation—the average person will spend roughly $192 for the holiday—a seventeen dollar increase from last year.

Inflation is part of the equation.

“The costs of our raw goods have gone up, especially the paper, the packaging and supplies have gone up,” said Skwarcan.

Siegert added the rising costs made things difficult, but it hasn’t stopped customers from wanting to get something special for their significant others.

“I don’t think it’s going to affect us that bad,” he said. “People really cherish their loved ones—their girlfriends and wives—they want to see them get something nice for this special day, so they’ll spend a little extra.”

You really can’t put a price on love, I said.

Siegert agreed: “No you can’t.”

Siegert informed me that someone purchased $400 worth of roses for a Valentine’s day bouquet—proving some are still willing to go all out for the holiday.

The National Retail Federation also adds that some of the reason people spend so much on Valentine’s Day is because they also buy gifts for friends, co-workers and even pets.

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