Chicago, December 14, 2022 — COVID-19 put a damper on holiday entertaining the past two years, but this year is likely to be different. According to a survey conducted by The NPD Group, 52% of consumers are less concerned about COVID-19 this year compared to a year ago, up 20 pts from last year, and 55% said they plan to host or visit family/friends during the holiday season, +8 pts from a year ago.

“After two years of dealing with pandemic concerns, consumers are anxious and excited to entertain and attend parties this holiday season,” says Joe Derochowski, NPD’s home and home improvement industry advisor. “As a result, they are increasingly looking to socialize, shop, and gather with friends and family, which will naturally spur more retail growth opportunities during the holidays.” 

For the home industry, the entertaining-related subcategories that typically realize a sales bump during the holiday season include barware tools and sets; bottle openers; coasters; corkscrews; ice buckets; pie/cake/brownie server; tea tools; wine aerator – non-electric; and wine tool sets. These alcohol-related beverageware shapes are popular for holiday entertaining, like wine glasses, highball glasses/tumblers, old-fashioned glasses, goblets, pilsner/pub, and martini glasses. Not surprisingly, cheese/charcuterie boards, chip and dip servers, tiered serve ware, and platter trays see a sales spike leading up to Thanksgiving and Christmas. 

“Traditionally, holiday parties are held the two weekends before Christmas,” says Derochowski. “This year, with Christmas falling on a Sunday and Hannukah beginning on December 18 and ending on December 26, could mean more extended celebrations. Holiday guests may stay further into the next week, which means more opportunities for baking together, entertaining, or preparing extra food to have leftovers.”

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