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If you are planning to take your lover out for a night on the town or on a whirlwind trip for Valentine's Day, you are not alone. According to the new MasterCard Love Index findings, this type of emotion fueled spending is outpacing other "love day" spending.
In the MasterCard Love Index, global shopping behavior is evaluated by looking at credit, debit and prepaid transactions during the Valentine's Day season (February 11th-14th) over the past three years. Taking a lover out for dinner brought in 40% of the total holiday dollars spent during that period, as well as accounting for 75% of the total transactions for 2017.
Sweeping your partner off for a fun and romance filled Valentine's Day trip (whether by train or airplane) is a favorite too, with the data showing a 23% upswing in travel transactions last year. What about a romantic night at a hotel? It was hands down the top earner, getting 27% of the total dollars spent during this holiday.
Showing some love with contactless technology
With the experience economy trending with consumers during the love day season, contactless technology seems to be lending a helpful hand, with the market experiencing a 311% increase in the value of transactions and a 203% upswing in the number of tractions during the last two years.
That said, in terms of dollars and cents the amounts people spent across all the different categories went up, but the biggest gains were seen in three areas:
- Air and train travel (1064%)
- Jewelry (453%)
- Flowers (446%)
"Spoiling your loved one on Valentine's Day shows no signs of slowing down. Our data suggests that while people still purchase traditional gifts, the move towards putting on a great experience trumps all," said Ann Cairns, Mastercard President, International.
"Contactless payments are convenient and make life that little bit easier, so it's great to see people embracing the technology around the world. The MasterCard Love Index - now in its 3rd year - highlights global and regional trends to offer priceless insight into consumer buying habits over the romantic period."
Online shopping is also a big winner during this romantic holiday season, experiencing a 136% upswing between Valentine's Day of 2015 and Valentine's Day of 2017.
The study tracks spending globally but what about Valentine's Day spending in the United States? They found that there was a 106% upswing in Valentine's Day related e-commerce transactions.
Planning for love or winging it?
MasterCard found that more people are planning for love rather than waiting until the last minute, with 30% of people picking up their Valentine's Day gifts on February 11th. But for some, a last minute gift is in the cards, with 27% of all transactions made between February 11th and 14th.