It’s Official: Fall Is America’s Favorite Season

Foliage, festivities and fall weather drive the season’s universal popularity across generations, per a new Morning Consult survey
October 20, 2022 at 5:00 am UTC

With each turn of the calendar from one season to the next comes the age-old debate: What time of year is really the best? According to new Morning Consult data, the answer is clear — it’s fall. 

When prompted to identify their favorite season, 41% of U.S. adults chose fall. Spring and summer each received 24% of the total favorite vote, while only 11% of respondents said winter is their season of choice.

Notably, fall wins out as the favorite season among every major demographic grouping, including gender, generation and region. 

Fall Is Decidedly Americans’ Favorite Season

The shares of respondents who selected each season as their favorite
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Survey conducted Oct. 10-11, 2022, among a representative sample of 2,210 U.S. adults, with an unweighted margin of error of +/-2 percentage points.

Autumn is very popular among women, Americans in the Midwest and South

  • Women are most enthusiastic in their support of fall — close to half (46%) identified it as their favorite season. 
  • Forty-four percent of respondents in both the Midwest and South favored fall, higher than the shares who said the same in the Northeast (39%) and West (37%).
  • Nearly 1 in 4 Gen Zers (24%) selected winter as their favorite season — more than any other demographic. Gen Z was the only group of respondents not to have winter in last place.
  • Summer had almost double the support in the Northeast (33%) as it did in the West (18%).
  • Fall also earned the highest net enjoyment rating (the share of respondents who said they enjoyed the season, minus the share who said they didn’t) of any season. It scored a rating of 89, followed by spring (88), summer (56) and winter (18).

Americans Love Fall Foliage, Autumn Weather and Thanksgiving

The shares of respondents who said they enjoy the following aspects of the fall/ autumn season “a lot”:
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Survey conducted Oct. 10-11, 2022, among a representative sample of 2,210 U.S. adults, with an unweighted margin of error of +/-2 percentage points.

What makes fall so universally appealing? 

  • Nearly 2 in 3 Americans (63%) said they enjoy fall foliage, followed closely by Thanksgiving (58%) and fall weather (56%).
  • Enthusiasm for all things autumnal is also driven, in part, by a strong association with positive emotions and memories. More than two-thirds of those surveyed said feelings like “happy,” “content,” “excited,” “optimistic” and “nostalgic” captured their attitude toward fall either “somewhat” or “very” well.
  • When asked to describe the fall season in just one word, a majority of respondents’ answers were cheerful in nature — with phrases such as “comfortable,” “cozy” and “beautiful” appearing frequently.

Brands tap into fall fandom

While Americans generally exhibit an aversion toward most forms of advertising, it appears that fall’s all-encompassing favorability lends some credence to season-specific marketing tactics. 

More than half (55%) of U.S. adults indicated they are interested in fall-themed content from brands on social media, while close to two-thirds of U.S. adults (63%) said they have a favorable opinion of brands that run fall-themed advertising. The above figures are even higher among Gen Zers and millennials.

Many brands have already executed on this insight by breathing new life into nostalgic activations. Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc., for instance, is bringing its Halloween “Boorito” promotion back to stores on Oct. 31, this time with a BeReal twist. Rewards customers will have the chance to win one of 10 “free burritos for a year” prizes if they share a photo of themselves in costume on the nascent social media app. 

Hot Topic Inc. — known for its 1990s grunge aesthetic — is also getting in on the social-forward fall fun via the launch of its first-ever virtual clothing line on the gaming platform Roblox, dubbed “Halloween Forever.”

No matter how spooky things get (only 12% of respondents indicated they have no interest in purchasing fall-related items), consumer appetite for fall appears alive and well.

The Oct. 10-11, 2022, survey was conducted among a representative sample of 2,210 U.S. adults, with an unweighted margin of error of plus or minus 2 percentage points.

A headshot photograph of Ellyn Briggs
Ellyn Briggs
Brands Analyst

Ellyn Briggs is a brands analyst on the Industry Intelligence team, where she conducts research, authors analyst notes and advises brand and marketing leaders on how to apply insights to make better business decisions. Prior to joining Morning Consult, Ellyn worked as a market researcher and brand strategist in both agency and in-house settings. She graduated from American University with a bachelor’s degree in finance. For speaking opportunities and booking requests, please email [email protected].

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