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When you think of holiday spending, the first holiday that comes to mind is, of course, Christmas. But other holidays also command a large hold on many people’s wallets. Halloween, for example, is another favorite holiday of many throughout the country. And, there are many who cannot resist spending big on decorations, costumes, and other fall activities associated with the holiday. But if you’re worried about your Halloween budget, don’t be. There are plenty of ways to save.
The National Retail Association says Americans will spend around $8.8 billion on Halloween this year. It can be hard to resist going overboard on your Halloween budget when all the stores are full of decorations, décor and costumes. But if you’re low on funds or just on a tight budget, consider these Halloween spending tips.
Whether you’re looking for costumes for yourself or your whole family, costume spending at Halloween can really add up. But you don’t need to pay so much for a great quality costume. In fact, some of the best costumes are from some creative ideas and simple spending.
Think about what you want to be and then head to some consignment shops and thrift stores. Chances are you can find plenty of items that, when put together, create a great costume. You can also try reusing bits and pieces of costumes from previous years to form a new costume creation. And, if you’ve got some skills with crafts or sewing, you can easily put together a great costume for very little expense. Look up create-your-own costume ideas on the Internet — a quick search reveals hundreds of great ideas.
Another part of Halloween that can put a big dent in your Halloween budget is decorations. It’s hard to resist getting that new giant pumpkin display or scary skeleton. But you also have to be practical. If you love Halloween, chances are you’ve got plenty of decorations you can already use.
And, discount stores and dollar stores also offer a multitude of decent-quality decorations at a fraction of the cost of other stores. Thrift stores also have good items you can dress up a bit for Halloween. For example, you can even turn old books and bottles into spooky Halloween decorations. Try spray painting some empty wine bottles a matte black and sticking orange candles in the top, or printed “poison” labels on the side.
Again, the internet is a great place to turn for some truly spook-tacular and inexpensive do-it-yourself Halloween decoration ideas.
Do you love handing out candy and treats to the local neighborhood kids? There’s nothing wrong with that, of course. But you aren’t responsible for ensuring everyone gets a great selection of candy. Just get what you can afford. And, if you run out before the kids stop coming, turn the lights off and leave a sorry note. If you’re that concerned, get cheaper candy that you can afford more pieces of. Keep an eye out for coupons and discounts too.
What’s Halloween without a few pumpkins on the porch? But there’s no need to spend big on pumpkins at the farmstand or pumpkin patch. You can get pretty big pumpkins at half the price at the local supermarket. Pumpkins are also usually the cheapest at Wal-mart.
And, if you aren’t planning on carving any Jack-o-lanterns, you can also just get some plastic or fabric pumpkins that you can reuse year after year. This will save you the trouble of purchasing new pumpkins each year.
A great part of the Halloween season is going to parties and fall festivals. Maybe you’re even planning to host a party of your own. Either way, any of these activities can quickly have you going way over your Halloween budget. But there are plenty of ways to enjoy the fall season without spending big.
Pick and choose festivals or activities that don’t come with a large ticket admission or require a large expense. For example, visiting local farms, taking a drive to see the leaves changing or attending local community events typically cost very little or nothing at all. Or, if you’ve got the time, plan ahead and save, especially if you plan on throwing a party. This way, you’ll be well prepared to enjoy the fall season fully without worrying about your budget.
For your own Halloween party, there’s no harm in asking everyone to contribute a dish, drinks, snacks, or even help with the decorations. It’s a pretty good guess that everyone has something they can spare or would like to make for the party. This can relieve a large part of the burden on your own Halloween budget. And, everyone will probably enjoy the fact that they all contributed to a great event!
Budgeting for any holiday is always a wise decision. So is trying to save up before the holiday so you have extra spending cash to do the things you want to do. But if you find yourself with limited funds for Halloween, don’t despair. Just do your best to stick to your budget and have a good time. After all, the holidays aren’t about spending a lot of money — they’re about spending great, memorable times with family and friends.
It also helps to set a budget right from the start. When you have a clear idea of what you have to spend, you’ll be less likely to spend foolishly. So the next time you see a 12-foot skeleton on sale in the local home goods store or an extravagant costume in the Halloween store, think first. Do you really need it, or can you find something just as good for much less somewhere else?