How Much Do You Spend On Halloween? It’s Right Around The Corner!

Halloween is just a short month away! While it isn’t my favorite holiday, I know a ton of people who would say Halloween is their favorite holiday. We’re pretty simple when it comes to Halloween because we don’t have any kids, but some families go all out and spend a ton of money to prepare for Halloween.

According to National Retail Federation, last year 7 in 10 Americans planned to celebrate Halloween and the average American was expected to spend $79.82 on decorations, costumes and candy. That’s not per family. That’s $79.82 per PERSON!

Halloween Decorations Can Be Expensive!

Halloween decorations come in all shapes, sizes and forms. There are simple decorations like the Jack-O-Lantern that you carve yourself and then there are completely over the top decorations like a two car garage that has been transformed into a haunted house.

As far as our decorations go, we normally have a couple of props we’ve gathered over the years and maybe a Jack-O-Lantern or two in our front entryway. Of course, if you want to get cheap Halloween decorations, wait until the day after Halloween and pick up what you wanted at a very discounted price.

Halloween Costumes Aren’t Cheap Either

The local mall has already had a Halloween store open for a few weeks and it isn’t even October yet. They sell all sorts of Halloween themed items, but I’d say about 80% of the items they sell are costumes and accessories to costumes.

The prices varied greatly but the average costume was over $50. There were some crazy over the top costumes there were a couple hundred dollars too!

One thing that surprised me was the fact that most of the costumes in the Halloween store were adult costumes, rather than children’s costumes. I always considered Halloween more of a kid’s holiday, but over the last few years it seems more and more adults get into Halloween. Then again, maybe I’m just getting older and realizing that it has always been an adult holiday too.

If you’re running on a tight budget this year, remember that you can normally come up with a pretty cheap Halloween costume from the things you have around your home. You might have to be a bit creative, but I’m sure you can come up with something good!

Do You Give Out Candy?

According to the NRF survey, 96% of people participating in Halloween would be buying candy to hand out to children last year. That’s a lot of candy, and I love me some candy! How much you spend on candy for Halloween totally depends on which type of candy you prefer to hand out to children.

If you’re going to be giving out bite-site or individually wrapped chocolates, be prepared to spend a ton of cash! However, if you go with my Halloween staple of Dum Dum pops, it won’t be nearly as expensive.

The other main factor in candy cost is where you live. If you live in a neighborhood with a lot of kids, you’ll have to buy a ton of candy. However, if you live off the beaten path like I have the last couple of years, you might only need to buy one bag!

Even with only one bag I still had a ton of left over candy last year. However, this year we live in a big neighborhood and I have feeling I’ll have to get a couple more bags of candy if I don’t want to run out.

How Much Will You Spend On Halloween This Year?

How much will you be spending on Halloween this year? Do you plan on buying decorations, dressing up in a costume or handing candy out to children?

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About Lance Cothern

Lance Cothern, a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) licensed in the Commonwealth of Virginia, is the founder of Money Manifesto. You can read more about him here or connect with him on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or Pinterest.


  1. I just buy cheap candy that I DON’T like. We’ve bought stuff we like before and we end up eating it ahead of time. Now, we buy Twizzlers.

  2. I REALLY don’t get the Halloween spending craze. I can’t think of anything more wasteful. $80 PER PERSON?! And you know what demographic spends the most? Young adult men with no children!

  3. We probably easily spend that much on Halloween. But we also set up a big haunted house to scare the kids, so our situation is probably a little different. I wouldn’t have to keep buying so much stuff every year if the dumb props from Target just continued to work the right way every year (stupid fog machine!!!) 🙂

  4. My wife bought some decorations but it was after last year’s Halloween was over so it was at a steep discount. We don’t get trick or treaters because we live in an apartment. My wife wants to buy a costume for our baby boy…she mentioned that people bid them up on ebay so maybe I can sell after he’s worn it!

  5. Bryce @ Save and Conquer says:

    My wife hand makes costumes for herself and our son. I just put on my tried and true clown wig and call it good. We usually buy 4 big bags of candy and all of it goes out the door on Halloween. I don’t have a clue what they cost. My wife also likes to buy a couple pumpkins that she and our son carve.

  6. Last year we bought like 200 pieces of candy and got 2 doorbell rings for 3 children. It literally took my husband until last week to eat all the leftover candy. I think we’ll be sitting this year out!

  7. I am at an age where I no longer go to costume parties and I do not decorate the house. I live in a gated community where I do not have children come to the house. My cost is zero!.

  8. I am not a Halloween fan, at all. I usually only spend around $10 on a bag of candy in case we get trick or treaters.

  9. Fortunately for us Halloween is not (yet) big in my country, so we’ll just ‘ignore’ it. When our daughter will grow, we’ll probably have to buy her costumes for the kindergarten events, but for few more years we’re safe 🙂

  10. The problem is the Halloween parties and dressing up for them. We usually don’t give out candy, instead wasting our money on costumes.

  11. I love this season and everything about it but I don’t get why people go on a spending craze for Halloween. Is there really a need for that?

  12. I hope not to spend too much this year! My daughter has a costume from last year which still fits. We’ll probably buy a couple of pumpkins for the window and some sweets for trick or treaters that may come knocking.

  13. $80 per person?? That’s ridiculous! We’re lucky that we live in the country, so there’s not lots of Halloween celebrating or trick-or-treating out here. For Halloween we just let the kids each pick out a bag of their fave candy, buy a new movie, and hang out at home. Super cheap. 🙂

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