Americans love our sports, as do others around the world. And many of us love spending on them, too.
A LendingTree survey of nearly 1,600 Americans shows that 41% of us will be spending money on sports this fall. A total of 21% said they would spend on game tickets, 16% on merchandise, 15% on food and alcohol, and 8% on sports betting.
The 8% figure seems low. There may be many sports addicts who do not want to admit that they are gambling.
A total of 8% also said they would spend on broadcast packages to watch sports, and 8% also said they would spend on travel to attend games.
According to the study, spenders on average plan to set aside $664 this fall.
Consider the demographics of income,
Those with incomes of $100,000 or more per year plan to spend $931.
Those with income between $75,000 and $9,999 plan to spend $900.
Those with incomes between $50,000 and $74,999 plan to spend $571.
Those with income between $35,000 and $49,999 plan to spend $483.
Those with income less than $35,000 plan to spend $382.
Given the age demographics,
Boomers (born 1946-1964) plans to spend $641.
Jill Xers (born 1965-1976) plans to spend $827.
Millennials (born 1977-1996) plan to spend $645.
Jill Zers (18-25 years old) plans to spend $464.
Looking at gender demographics, among the spenders, men plan to pay an average of $767 this fall, and women plan to spend $512.
The sports that will attract the highest percentage of spenders are
Wrestling / mixed martial arts / boxing: 11%
debt and gambling
Not everyone spends wisely. A third of sports fans said they would take out or incur debt this fall to support their sports spending, with a total of 42% for Millennials and Generation Z, 22% for Generation X and 11% for Baby Boomers.
You can bet that some of these debts will finance gambling, which can lead to serious addiction for some.
Matt Schulze, LendingTree (Tree) The chief credit analyst acknowledges the serious risks of sports betting but also points to the silver lining.
“Sports betting can be a great and fun thing to do, with wisdom and moderation,” Schulz says.
“Fantasy football tournaments, March Madness arches, Super Bowl pools, and trips to Vegas with family and friends can be fun and profitable — and create memories that will last a lifetime. The adrenaline rush you feel when winning a sports bet can be powerful.”
What he says is true, but not everyone is able to gamble wisely and in moderation. And Schulz is not an unbiased source. LendingTree is an online loan marketplace that can benefit financially if someone takes a loan through their site to fund their sports gambling habit.