Halloween means candy treats for the neighborhood, trendy costumes for the kids, and lots of spooky décor. All that fun can be hard on your wallet. According to the National Retail Federation, Americans celebrated Halloween by spending a whopping $9 billion in 2018. But budget-conscious treat-or-treaters can easily save big on Halloween spending with some simple smart shopping, planning, and creativity. Let’s take a look at some fun money-saving ideas for Halloween.
Score Fun Costumes for Less
- Substitute a bit of creativity for store-bought outfits. Whether you're seeking scary or sweet, the internet is an incredible source of costume inspiration; check out Pinterest for tons of ideas. Use cool YouTube Halloween makeup tutorials for every look from creepy clowns to scary skeleton and cute rag dolls.
- Hit the thrift stores. Create a fun look inspired by vintage clothing finds. That eighties prom gown makes for a pretty princess, and some secondhand finds can style you as a sixties flower child or a seventies disco queen.
- Organize a trade. It's likely that your kids have outgrown last year's costume favorite. Friends and neighbors may be happy to trade those costumes collecting dust in the attic, and many perennial costume favorites (anything Star Wars, superheroes, and classics like witches and skeletons) stay popular over time.
- Buy last minute. If your little one has her heart set on Wonder Woman or Spiderman, this is not the option for you; buy early to avoid disappointment. But if you're willing to be flexible and are open to ideas, you may find some deep discounts in the days preceding October 31.
- Creativity + your own closet. With a few rips and tears, Dad's old flannels make for fine zombie attire. Don't forget about your kids' football player and cheerleading uniforms for a quick fun costume.
- Comparison shop online. Check out Amazon and eBay to compare prices and seek out the best deals on costumes and accessories. There are numerous online costume merchants such as Halloweencostumes.com that offer coupons, sale items, and even rentals of more extravagant costumes like the Queen of Hearts and Chewbacca.
Save on Sweet Treats
- Buy candy in bulk. This is one of the best money-saving ideas for Halloween. If your neighborhood brings lots of trick-or-treaters to your door, save by buying in bulk online or at Sam's Club, BJ's, or Costco.
- Check out the regular candy aisle. Everyday prices may be better buys than the eye-catching Halloween displays.
- Coupons and BOGO. Search out coupons and advertised buy-one-get-one deals at your supermarket or drugstore.
- Choose wisely. Chocolate is yummy but a costlier option than big bags of treats like Tootsie Rolls, lollipops, SweetTarts, and bubble gum.
Decorate for Less
- Dollar store decor. This is one of the easiest money-saving ideas for Halloween. You'll find a great selection of inexpensive Halloween decorations.
- Get crafty. Have fun creating seasonal masterpieces. Buy supplies at Michaels using coupons for deals like 40-50% off a regularly priced item.
- Print it. Search online for free Halloween printables and create your own banners, coloring pages, and window decorations.
Fun for Cheap (or Free!)
- Movie Night. It's an instant party with cider, popcorn family-friendly favorites like It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown and Hotel Transylvania, or scary classics like Night of the Living Dead and Halloween.
- Free community events. Many local shopping centers organize treat-or-treating with their merchants.
- Go old school. Introduce your kids to bobbing for apples, making popcorn balls, and carving jack o'lanterns.
- Check Groupon for discounted haunted house tickets and other seasonal events.
Save on next year's celebration with these great money-saving ideas for Halloween. The first week of November means clearance sales offering huge discounts on costumes, decorations, and candy.