Americans plan to keep their 4th of July spending under control this year

How to Throw a Red, White and Brilliant Fourth of July Party
How to Throw a Red, White and Brilliant Fourth of July Party

More Americans plan to celebrate the 4th of July this year, but it seems they'll be keeping their holiday spending in check.

According to an annual survey from the National Retail Federation, consumers will spend an average of $71.34 per household on food for Independence Day barbecues and picnics. This is a mild increase from last year, when consumers reportedly spent an average of $71.23 per household on food celebrations.

According to the survey, an estimated 214 million people plan to celebrate the 4th of July and are expected to spend about $6.8 billion on holiday festivities, up 1.4% from last year when, according to the NRF's 2015 survey, more than 156 million consumers planned to do so.

The NRF's 2016 survey, conducted by Prosper Insights and Analytics, surveyed 6,811 consumers in early June. The results have a margin of error of plus or minus 1.2 percentage points.

Of those respondents who said they will celebrate, 65% plan to go to a barbecue, picnic or cookout, 43% plan to attend a community celebration or watch fireworks, and 12% plan to see a parade.

About 13% of these Americans, or nearly 31 million people, plan to celebrate out of town. (If you plan to travel for the holiday, you may want to consider using one of the best travel credit cards in America to help fund your trip.) Yet only 25% said they intend to purchase holiday-related items, like U.S. flags, patriotic-themed apparel and decorations.

Keep the Holiday from Hurting Your Wallet

No matter how you plan to celebrate the long weekend, it's a good idea to avoid going into credit card debt. Most cities offer free events in honor of Independence Day, but if you're planning to do something that will require spending money, do it with your bank account and credit scores in mind. (Remember, high credit card balances can hurt your credit. You can see how your spending habits are affecting your credit by reviewing your free annual credit report summary, updated every month, on To avoid overspending, consider making a budget ahead of time and doing your best to stick with it.

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