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Households increased entertainment spending in 2012

American households increased their average spending for fees and admissions at location-based entertainment venues in 2012 by 3% compared to 2011 (inflation-adjusted).

Both the bad and good news is that the staycation trend is still going strong. The bad news part is that average household spending for entertainment on trips is continuing its long-term declining trend with average household spending down by another 1% in 2012. The good news is for community-based entertainment, as since 2011, average household spending has increased by 5% at those venues. Community-based spending has grown from 56% of all location-based entertainment spending in 2000 to two-thirds (65%) in 2012.


00-12 entertainment spending CEX & Trips

The increase in spending on community-based entertainment is partially attributable to an increased percentage of households attending those venues. All but the poorest income households saw an increased participation rate in 2012.

The long-term trend of social-stratification also continued into 2012 for community-based entertainment. Entertainment spending increased for the higher socioeconomic households and declined for the lower socioeconomic households. An increasing share of community-based entertainment spending is continuing to shift to the higher socioeconomic households. The top 40% of households by income now account for 70% of all community-based entertainment spending, with the households in the top 20% by income now accounting for almost one-half of all the spending (47%).

Entertainment quintile spending change 2003-2012

These continuing long-term trends have serious implications for location-based entertainment, including family entertainment centers as well as larger venues such as theme parks, in terms of whom they target as their primary markets and how they design and operate for those markets.

Our October 2012 Leisure eNewsletter will have in-depth coverage of this changing landscape of location-based entertainment household spending and participation.

About Randy White

Randy White is CEO and co-founder of the White Hutchinson Leisure & Learning Group. The 31-year-old company, with offices in Kansas City, Missouri, has worked for over 600 clients in 37 countries throughout the world. Projects the company has designed and produced have won seventeen 1st place awards. Randy is considered to be one of the world's foremost authorities on feasibility, brand development, design and production of leisure experience destinations including entertainment, eatertainment, edutainment, agritainment/agritourism, play and leisure facilities.

Randy was featured on the Food Network's Unwrapped television show as an eatertainment expert, quoted as an entertainment/edutainment center expert in the Wall Street Journal, USA Today, New York Times and Time magazine and received recognition for family-friendly designs by Pizza Today magazine. One of the company's projects was featured as an example of an edutainment project in the book The Experience Economy. Numerous national newspapers have interviewed him as an expert on shopping center and mall entertainment and retail-tainment.

Randy is a graduate of New York University. Prior to repositioning the company in 1989 to work exclusively in the leisure and learning industry, White Hutchinson was active in the retail/commercial real estate industry as a real estate consultancy specializing in workouts/turnarounds of commercial projects. In the late 1960s to early 1980s, Randy managed a diversified real estate development company that developed, owned and managed over 2.0 million square feet of shopping centers and mixed-use projects and 2,000 acres of residential subdivisions. Randy has held the designations of CSM (Certified Shopping Center Manager) and Certified Retail Property Executive (CRX) from the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC).

He has authored over 150 articles that have been published in over 40 leading entertainment/leisure and early childhood education industry magazines and journals and has been a featured speaker and keynoter at over 40 different conventions and trade groups.

Randy is the editor of his company's Leisure eNewsletter, has a blog and posts on Twitter and Linkedin.

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