For Love and Money

Military families spending less this Valentine’s Day

| February 5, 2014

Servicemembers and their families are bringing their frugal ways to Valentine’s Day again this year, with roughly one in four consumers planning to spend less than they did in 2013.

The First Command Financial Behaviors Index® reveals that 22 percent of middle-class military families who typically celebrate Valentine’s Day expect to spend less in 2014. On average, they say they’ll spend $51, down from $120 in 2013. Another 69 percent say they expect to spend about the same as last year.

Despite the downward trend in spending, servicemembers are actually more likely to celebrate Valentine’s Day than members of the general population – 70 percent versus 57 percent. Valentine’s Day plans are similar between military and civilian families. The most common way of celebrating is “eating out,” which was identified by 56 percent of military and 57 percent of general population respondents. Other popular holiday purchases include:

  • Cards (45 percent of military and 41 percent of general population)
  • Gifts (24 percent and 20 percent)
  • Candy (17 percent and 19 percent)

Servicemembers stand out from the crowd when it comes to keeping the florists busy. Celebrating with flowers was selected by 41 percent of military respondents versus 24 percent of the general population.

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