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Halloween hacks: How to spend less on costumes and candy this year

Parents, this one's for you. Heck, anyone who needs to buy candy and costumes should take note.
When it comes to the spooky season, the amount we spend to make it a success can be scary. Here are some tips for saving money when putting together costumes and buying candy to hand out to trick or treaters.

Halloween is high on the popularity list of kid-centric celebrations, but when it comes to the spooky season, the amount we spend to make it a success can be scary. According to a report by HelloSafe, Canadian consumers are expected to spend an average of $87.6 on Halloween this year–that’s 28% more spent on candy and costumes compared to 2021, with costumes slated to be the most significant expense. To help cut down on costs, we’re sharing some Halloween hacks that are sure to save you some money.

How to cut costs on costumes

Don’t cry, DIY

If you have an ounce of creativity, then making something out of materials found around your house is an obvious money saver. With the right combination of clothing and accessories, you can dress up as a lumberjack, a hippy, a Disney character, or an M&M without leaving your house. This post is filled with easy DIY costume ideas for kids and adults.

Thrift and save

Scour the racks of your local thrift shop, or browse resale sites like Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist for gently-used costumes. Because people often only wear costumes once, there are plenty posted for sale leading up to Halloween. And the best part is you can pick them up for a fraction of the price. For costume embellishments, hit the Dollar Store where you can find an array of affordable accessories.

Call on your friends

Invite your friends and family to participate in a Halloween costume exchange–many people keep a box of old costumes from years past stored in the basement. Encourage your school to host a costume exchange event where parents can bring all their kids' old costumes to borrow, sell, or trade with others, or have a small get-together and make a night of it.

How to curb the amount you spend on candy

Timing is everything

When the candy hits the shelves at the start of the Halloween season, waiting to make your purchase can often save you money in the long run. Consider buying your candy during the week leading up to Halloween for potential cost savings, as this is when the sale prices usually hit. But waiting until the day before Halloween could result in a risk of missing out on all the best sweets, so keep your eye on the shelves as you shop.

Buy in bulk

Sometimes buying more can end up costing less. Instead of picking up multiple bags of candy from your local grocery store, consider shopping at a big-box store like Costco for your Halloween treats. Place a large order of candy online (Amazon sells a variety of Halloween treats), and then team up with a friend to share the cost of your larger bulk candy order. Then you can divvy it up when the goods arrive.

Mix up your treats

Candy costs vary, but chocolate always chalks up to a higher price point–especially if you’re going for the full-sized bars. Instead of stocking up on chocolate, consider mixing it up with other sweet treats that come in at a lower price when purchased in bulk (think Starburst, Skittles, Sweet Tarts, and Smarties). For example, a box of 95 mini chocolate bars from London Drugs will cost you $23.99, whereas a box of 90 non-chocolate candy treats is $19.99.