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The Cost of True Love: The 12 Days of Christmas [infographic]


29 years ago, a chief economist at PNC Bank decided to figure out how much it would cost to give each of the gifts given in the song “The Twelve Days of Christmas.” Each year, PNC releases a new Christmas Price Index which shows the current cost of the gifts. Costs have steadily risen, and now true love seems well beyond the financial reach of college students and can only be purchased by the very wealthy.

Here’s how prices have risen just in the past 10 years:

Gift 2002 Price 2012 Price % Change
One Partridge in a Pear Tree $102.50 $204.99 +200%
Two Turtle Doves $58.00 $125.00 +215%
Three French Hens $15.00 $165.00 +1,100%
Four Calling Birds $316.00 $519.96 +165%
Five Golden Rings $382.50 $750.00 +196%
Six Geese-a-Laying $150.00 $210.00 +140%
Seven Swans-a-Swimming $2,100.00 $7,000.00 +333%
Eight Maids-a-Milking $41.20 $58.00 +141%
Nine Ladies Dancing $4,107.65 $6,294.03 +153%
Ten Lords-a-Leaping $3,921.44 $4,766.60 +122%
Eleven Pipers Piping $1,614.60 $2,562.00 +159%
Twelve Drummers Drumming $1,749.15 $2,775.50 +159%
Christmas Price Index $14,558.05 $25,431.18 +175%
True Cost of Christmas* $54,951.31 $107,300.24 +195%

* The True Cost of Christmas is the cumulative cost of all the gifts when you count each repetition in the song–so it reflects the cost of 364 gifts

A cheaper alternative

If you’re looking for something a little more affordable for your true love, consider giving one of these! It’s a free printable we created of the 12 Days of Christmas graphic.

Download the 8×10 Christmas Printable here.

Note: If you’re having trouble getting it to print 8×10, make sure to uncheck “fit to page” in your printer dialogue.

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The Cost of True Love: The 12 Days of Christmas [infographic]

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  1. Joseph LeBaron Dec 7, 2012 at 8:41 am

    I don’t get it. Why are swans-a-swimming so expensive? It’s got to be a supply and demand thing. So many people are clamoring for swans! I mean, it’s not like they lay a new egg every day… oh wait.

    • cuteculturechick Dec 8, 2012 at 7:24 pm

      If you want to go with a budget option, you could go with crows cawing or pigeons pecking

  2. Pingback: The Cost of True Love

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