WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Around 68 percent of Americans who observe Easter say their Easter spending will be affected by the coronavirus this year, according to WalletHub’s new Coronavirus Easter Survey, released Monday.
This survey, which follows WalletHub’s report on the State Economies Most Exposed to Coronavirus, shows how the coronavirus pandemic has changed Americans’ plans and attitudes regarding Easter.
Below are additional highlights of the report, along with a WalletHub Q&A.
- Worshippers don’t want to stay home: 56% of Americans who went to church on Easter Sunday last year say they will go to church for Easter this year, if it is open.
- Republicans are more likely to attend services: Republicans are almost three times more likely than Democrats to attend church on Easter this year, if it is open.
- Pandemics make us appreciate family and health more: The coronavirus has made Americans most grateful for their family (40%), followed by health (29%) and then freedom (13%).
- Traditional Easter spending is down: Almost half of Easter-celebrating Americans are skipping out on candy, new outfits and Easter foods this year, in contrast with prior years.
- COVID-19 itself is scarier than financial troubles: 68% of Americans are more worried about the coronavirus than the U.S. economy.
- Many Americans think lockdowns should last: About half of Americans believe that non-essential business, restaurants and travel should not restart for at least 3 months.
Q&A with WalletHub
How do Americans plan to celebrate Easter when they cannot gather in large groups?
“Americans that celebrate Easter this year plan to partake in at least some of their regular Easter traditions in a way that fits with social distancing guidelines.,” said Jill Gonzalez, WalletHub analyst. “For example, around 66 percent of people plan to have phone calls or video conferencing, 24 percent will watch church on TV, and 19.5 percent will have indoor Easter egg hunts. Some people may do all of the above.”
Do Americans want to open the country up by Easter?
“Only around 14 percent of Americans want non-essential businesses to reopen by April 12,” said Jill Gonzalez, WalletHub analyst. “In fact, the largest percentage of people, around 50 percent, think these non-essential merchants should stay closed for three months. Very few people think an immediate reopening is a good idea, at just 5 percent of the population.”
Will coronavirus put a big financial hardship on churches and other places of worship, especially around Easter?
“Churches may suffer from fewer donations, as around 27 percent of Easter-celebrating Americans plan to donate less on Easter this year than they did last year,” said Jill Gonzalez, WalletHub analyst. “Most people, almost 66 percent, will donate the same amount. Over a quarter of Americans will also donate part of their coronavirus stimulus check to a religious organization.”
What traditional Easter purchases will suffer due to the COVID-19 pandemic?
“The Easter candy industry will take a big hit, as over 42 percent of Easter celebrants who normally purchase candy say they will not do so this year,” said Jill Gonzalez, WalletHub analyst. “Americans will also forego buying new outfits and Easter food at nearly the same percentages.”
Will most Americans obey social distancing guidelines this Easter?
“What is most concerning is that 56 percent of people who went to church on Easter last year say they want to go again this year, if services are held,” said Jill Gonzalez, WalletHub analyst. “Fortunately, others are adapting to the circumstances more reasonably. Most people who celebrate Easter will end up staying at home, recognizing that limiting close contact will help flatten the curve and minimize the spread of COVID-19. It’s just the highly social minority we need to worry about.”
The complete survey results can be found here.