December 14, 2022

Holiday Tradition Hiatus

— Over 1 in 10 Americans are giving roast turkey a poultry pardon this year due to inflation.

Building a gingerbread house; opening chocolate advent calendars, and roasting a gleaming, golden turkey for the table centerpiece… These are just a few of the classic food traditions we usually embrace over the holiday season. However, for many people, this year has been less than merry and bright in terms of finances as the annual inflation rate reached a 40-year high of 9.1% in June. Sky-high inflation has increased grocery bills by 13.1% over the last year, while the price of food away from home increased substantially less - 7.6%. This means in some cases, it proves more economical to eat out, as compared to doing household shopping and cooking.

We surveyed over 1,000 people across the country to determine how many have had to forgo their favorite festive pastimes due to financial constraints.

Having everyone bring a dish
Setting a gift-giving budget
Not making any changes
More affordable alcohol options
Substituting turkey for more affordable options
Getting takeout
Eating out instead of eating at home
Substituting meat for plant-based alternatives

Overall, it was found that the main tradition people will be changing this year to reduce costs is transforming their holiday meal into a potluck event, rather than providing guests with an entire meal. A significant 34.6% of people said they’re asking their guests to each bring a dish to their festive gathering this year and another 32.2% said they’re setting a gift-giving budget as a way to save costs over the holidays.

It appears inflation has increased grocery costs to the point where 12.7% of people have actually opted out of cooking at home and instead, plan on dining out at a restaurant for their holiday meal. Another 18.2% of people are forgoing their favorite boozy beverages for cheaper alcohol choices.

Turkeys are not only getting a presidential pardon this year, but a national poultry pardon too! Combined with inflation causing the cost of the bird to sky-rocket over 75% more as compared to last year, there has also been a decreased supply of turkey due to a long outbreak of avian flu in more than 40 states. Therefore, it’s understandable why more than 1 in 7 Americans (15.6%) have chosen to substitute their traditional turkey centerpiece for a more affordable option this festive season.

’It’s an unfortunate reality that people are having to sacrifice or change holiday traditions this year due to the domino effect of inflation-related factors,’ says Daniel Petz, Co-founder & CEO of ‘While these circumstances are out of consumers’ control, it’s evident that families are implementing changes to best suit their budgets during this time - whether it’s giving an official poultry pardon to the turkey centerpiece or choosing to support independent, local businesses by eating out over the holidays instead of cooking at home!’


The boam research team compiled a potential list of holiday traditions in America that people will be changing in order to save costs over the holidays. Of these, we selected nine of the most relevant, which were applicable to the increased cost of living in the current socio-economic landscape. We then surveyed over 1,000 people across the country, asking them to pick any cost-saving options that were applicable to them this festive season. These results were then analyzed to determine the most popular money-saving method. (Pollfish, December 2022)