Inflation is hitting American everywhere, and that includes holiday gifts, food, and even decorations. Christmas trees are reaching $100 and up nowadays, and consumers are getting frustrated. CBS News spoke to buyers this holiday season, but also to a tree farmer who had to raise his prices this year.
Gary Thomas owns a tree farm near the Pennsylvania-Maryland border. He shared that he had to raise his prices by about 15% to cover labor costs in a competitive market. Thomas also shared that he was worried about what his customers would think of the higher prices.
“When I went to this year’s price, I thought, ‘How much resistance am I gonna get? How many complaints am I gonna get? How many Google reviews are gonna say I charge too much?'” he admitted.
The Real Christmas Tree Board put out data that shows Christmas tree prices this year compared to last year. They predicted prices would go up by about 5% to 15%. Additionally, other holiday decorations are going up in price as well due to the rising costs of shipping, both in and out of stores.
CBS News also spoke to consumers about the hike in prices. The outlet spoke with Karen Hilton, a shopper who commented on the prices of food. “Everything has gone up and it’s not just what you’re going to get for the gifts,” said Hilton. “It’s food, it’s decorations, it’s all the stuff to decorate with, and it goes quick.”
How to See the National Christmas Tree This Year
The National Park Service has its own Christmas tree at the US Capitol, and here’s how to see it if you’re in the area. The National Christmas Tree lighting ceremony took place on Nov. 30 celebrating the 100th National Christmas Tree lighting.
“First lit in 1923 by President Calvin Coolidge, the National Christmas Tree continues to inspire people to enjoy cherished traditions and memories made with family and friends in national parks during the holiday season,” said the NPS in a statement.
The National Christmas Tree is located on the Ellipse in President’s Park and is the centerpiece of the Pathway of Peace. The pathway features 58 smaller trees representing the United States and territories and also schools managed by the Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Indian Education and the Department of Defense Education Activity.
From Dec. 2 to Jan. 1, 2023, visitors to the US Capitol can check out the National Christmas Tree and the Pathway of Peace for free. The area is open from 10 am to 10 pm Sunday through Thursday, and 10 am to 11 pm Friday and Saturday. The National Christmas Tree lights up every night at sunset.