Halloween is one of those celebrations that retailers love! The National Retail Federation (NRF) says that consumers will spend $8.8 billion this year on Halloween, up slightly from 2018. When you are on a tight budget, you need to find ways to save money on Halloween spending.
Budget for Halloween
As with everything, the first step to saving money on Halloween is to have a budget. How much can you afford? How much did you save up already? This is your spending budget. Stick to it. If you take the kids to buy costumes, give them cash and let them buy what they can with the amount allotted. You will save your budget and they will learn how to be a smart shopper.
What is the biggest piece of your Halloween spending budget? Candy. The NRF says that total spending on candy in 2018 was $2.6 billion.
How can you reduce your Halloween candy budget?
- Buy name-brand candy, skip the designer goodies.
- Shop at the big-box stores such as Costco and Sam’s Club and buy in bulk. Look for packages of small candies. It will last longer.
- Keep an eye out for sales at your local drug stores too. They sometimes offer seasonal sales and special deals such as buy one bag and get one free.
- Don’t put the candy bowl outside your door. Some trick-or-treaters will pace themselves, but most will scoop up as much they can.
There are alternatives to candy. You can save money on Halloween spending this year by taking a trip to the Dollar store. Stock up on stickers, small plastic toys, and bugs, glow sticks and other simple toys such as these. You can make up goody bags in advance, with one piece of candy and some toys and stickers.
Social media is driving Halloween costume choices this year too. Here is where your Halloween spending can bust your budget. The kids will guilt you into buying what their friends are wearing or what they see online.
How can you save money on costumes?
- For the kids, here’s an easy way to save. The trending costumes from last year are trending this year too. Maybe they don’t want to wear the same costume from last year. If you have several children, pass the costumes down among the children in your family.
- Host a costume swap in the neighborhood.
- Look around the house…you probably have lots of old clothing items that you haven’t discarded yet. For instance, old shirts, hats, shoes, etc. Take what you have and add accessories.
- Rather than a mask, use makeup or face paint.
You can use the costumes you see on social media channels such as Pinterest as a pattern for how to create a one-of-a-kind costume for you and your kids.
Second-hand clothing stores such as Goodwill and the Salvation Army have set up entire sections for Halloween. Costumes are ready to go. Or, browse the racks, let the kids use their imagination for building an eye-catching costume from the clothing items in the store.
You can also save money on Halloween spending this year by renting the costume and returning it when the holiday is over. This tip is especially helpful for you grownup trick-or-treaters. Be sure to check the costume thoroughly and mark down the return due date so you don’t get socked with late fees.
The best way to save money on store-bought costumes is to buy them a day or two after Halloween. The prices will be down significantly and you can snap up bargains as retailers look to empty their inventory. Just put them away somewhere safe where you can find them next year.
Save Money on Halloween Spending, Make Your Own Decorations
The first place to start is with a search around the house. What do you still have leftover from last year? Do you have the materials sitting around to make decorations? You can find tons of ideas for making Halloween decorations on Pinterest and DIY. If you have kids, engage their creativity and imagination. Encourage them to make decorations for the house. You will save quite a bit of money.
Getting pumpkins from the pumpkin patch is a lot of fun for you and the kids. But they are cheaper at the grocery store. If your budget is stretched, consider skipping the pumpkin patch trip this year. Extend the life of your pumpkins by drawing on them rather than carving. You can make dessert later or decorate your Thanksgiving table with them.
Snap up Halloween decorations on the day of or the day after the holiday. You will find the best bargains then.
There is no reason to bust your budget on Halloween entertainment. Restaurants such as IHOP, Chuck E. Cheese, and Krispy Kreme usually offer free food and Halloween treats just before Halloween.
Consult your WhatsApp community groups and community boards at the grocery stores to find out about free parties and other kinds of Halloween events happening where you live.