America turns 239 years young on July 4 this year, and like any birthday celebration, some serious money must be spent. It's a great way to pay tribute to the people who founded this nation by spending the currency that has their faces on it.
Every year on Independence Day, Americans celebrate by dropping loads of moolah on food, traveling, fireworks and more. But do you know just how much we country-lovin' folk actually throw down?
Here's a look into the cash Americans spend on the Fourth of July:
1. Fourth of July food bills.
2. For the love of cheeseburgers.
Since most Fourth of July gatherings include cheeseburgers (and even veggie burgers for our vegetarian friends), it is no surprise that Americans roll out the dough. According to a Forbes article, Americans unloaded a mega sum of $193.6 million on hamburger patties, $70.4 million on buns and $86.2 million on slices of cheese in 2010. That doesn't even include $203 million they spent on condiments and $160 million on vegetables for those burgers. Imagine what those figures must be today!
3. Fire up the grill.
After spending that money on the BBQ food, cooking it is just as costly. Forbes states that Americans dropped $111 million on charcoal and $94.3 million on lighter fluid in 2010. And if you're hosting a big party, make sure you stock up on these items.
4. Baby, you’re a firework.
No Fourth of July celebration is complete without fireworks, and if you have your own show, get ready to spend a lot of cash. According to a 2014 study from the American Pyrotechnics Association, people broke the bank last year by spending $695 million on fireworks in their backyards and $332 million for public displays. Even if you are checking out a "free" fireworks show in your town, know that they aren't really free since it is coming out of your tax dollars.
5. Salute the flag of the United States of China.
Americans love to express patriotism on Independence Day by displaying the stars and stripes. However, this proud symbol of America isn't usually made here at home. The U.S. imports nearly $4 million worth of American flags overseas, including $3.6 million from China, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. It's something to think about when you're proudly waving the flag.
6. A time to travel.
Even though Independence Day gasoline prices reached their lowest in five years, traveling for the holiday is still a hefty cost. About 41 million Americans travel on average for the Fourth of July. That includes over 3 million people who fly every year. The average cost for a domestic flight is $384. 3 million flyers times $384 equals over $1.1 billion spent on air travel for the holiday.
7. Some states let the money pour out.
Most states and municipalities like to pinch pennies from their budgets, except when they are celebrating America's birthday. In 2012, cities in Tennessee, California, Texas and South Carolina spent serious cash to hold grand public events. To be fair, these events attracted a lot of tourists, which in turn brought in revenue to businesses and the cities.
Like this story? Click the button below to share!