A late-April Easter has led the National Retail Federation to issue strong spending projections for the holiday.
Reporting data from its annual survey, conducted in partnership with Prosper Insights & Analytics, the organization expects American consumers to drop $18.11 billion on Easter, a dip from the $18.16 billion projected in 2018.
However, with nearly 80 percent of survey respondents expected to celebrate, shoppers are projected to spend a little more on average: $151.25 in 2019 vs. $150.05 in 2018. This year’s projection just missed 2017’s record average of $151.91.
Eighty-seven percent of Easter shoppers are expected to buy candy, spending $2.49 billion. That’s down from $2.63 billion in 2018. 
Consumers are also projected to spend $5.74 billion on food, $3.27 billion on clothing, $2.87 billion on gifts, $1.29 billion on flowers, just over $1 billion on decorations and $780 million on greeting cards.
More than half of consumers (54 percent) plan to cook a holiday meal, while 16 percent will let a restaurant handle holiday food preparations. Less than half (49 percent) of shoppers will attend church on Easter, and 15 percent will open gifts. Just under a third of consumers are planning an Easter egg hunt for the little ones in their lives.
A subset of shoppers — 21 percent of survey respondents — don’t plan to celebrate Easter, but that won’t stop them from hitting post-holiday sales. Nearly half (48 percent) plan to spend after Easter at an average of $19.
The survey revealed younger adults are especially “egg-cited” for Easter, with 85 percent of survey respondents ages 18-34 and 80 percent of respondents ages 35-54 planning to celebrate. 
Shoppers under 35 are also more inclined to hop on their smartphones to assist in Easter shopping. In 2015, 24 percent of these consumers planned to use smartphones to help with purchasing decisions around the holiday. It jumped to 37 percent in 2019.
The survey included 7,388 U.S. adult consumers and was conducted March 1-8, 2019.