While those in Houston spend over $100 on their partner, people in San Jose only spend $35

Indianapolis IN, February 2022 — With the most romantic day of the year just around the corner, new research from retail data company Emarsys shows which US cities will be showering their partners with gifts this Valentine’s Day – and which ones won’t.

While the average American pays just over $65 on gifts for this annual celebration of love, certain spots in the US go the extra mile when it comes to spending money on their beloved.

The Top Spenders

  1. Houston – $101.59
  2. Los Angeles – $95.79
  3. Jacksonville – $83.37
  4. Indianapolis – $76.71
  5. New York – $74.69

The Smallest Spenders

  1. San Jose – $35.00
  2. San Antonio – $36.77
  3. Memphis – $41.04
  4. Philadelphia – $47.80
  5. Columbus – $49.03

Emarsys data shows that men spend almost a third more than women on romantic gifts, ($77 vs $56.) The most popular gifts that men buy are chocolates (44%), followed by flowers (36%). One in five men (18%) say that gadgets (18%) are the most popular gift choice for their loved one.

For women, almost half (47%) choose flowers for their Valentine, with a further 22% selecting chocolates. The third most popular choice is loungewear, with one in five (19%) choosing to treat their love to this type of present.

The age group that spends the most on presents is 16–24-year-olds, who will pay an average of $72.42, on gifts for their Valentine. Those aged 55 and over, however, tend to spend around $49.

Romance has also blossomed during lockdown, with Emarsys data showing that 12 million Americans bought a new home to turn into a love nest. A further 39 million US shoppers bought cute matching pyjama sets and an additional 17.2 million even invested in a romantic hot tub for two.

The virus didn’t stop wedding planning, either – 12.6 million enamoured Americans got engaged to their lockdown lover during the pandemic, with the 25–34-year-olds being the most likely to buy an engagement ring of any age group and Austin being the US city where most people popped the question during the pandemic.

In addition, 11.6 million bought a wedding dress – with those in Philadelphia buying the most – and 10.2 million smitten couples across America booked a wedding venue, showing that love still flourished, even under the restrictions of lockdown.  

When it comes to gift giving this year, Emarsys data also suggests that US shoppers are becoming more mindful, with the most popular goal being to buy less. One in five (20%) admit to being worried about overconsumption, with others wanting to shop more sustainably for gifts (21%).

Commenting on the findings, Kelsey Jones, Global Director of Product Marketing said: “Americans spent a staggering $21.5bn on Valentine’s Day last year. But with shopping habits now changing, 2022 may see a move towards a different kind of gift giving.

“We know that shoppers are concerned about overconsumption and shopping sustainably this year, while also sometimes seeking experiences over physical items. From a retailer’s perspective, it’s important to note these changing attitudes, especially at peak times such as Valentine’s Day.

“Whether consumers are shopping online or in-store at this time, retailers can capitalise on the influx of traffic by capturing data insights to leverage personalisation techniques and technologies in the future. Powered by AI, the right data can empower retail marketers by helping them understand their customers and ultimately help shoppers make the best purchases for their loved ones this Valentine’s Day and beyond – when, how and where they want.”

Emarsys empowers marketers around the world to create truly personalized omnichannel experiences that deliver business outcomes, helping brands across the world get the best retail results this Valentine’s Day.

To find out more about the changing face of retail, download the Emarsys 2022 unPredictions report.