The pandemic and potential supply chain shortage aren't stopping consumers from celebrating Halloween. The National Retail Federation expects people will spend $10.14 billion this Halloween, up from $8.05 billion in 2020. Among celebrants, 66% plan to buy candy, 52% plan to purchase decorations, and 46% will buy costumes.
Those numbers can seem daunting for a single day, especially when watching the family budget; however, there are ways to keep the fun stylish and cost-efficient. Better Business Bureau recommends the following tips this Halloween:
Look around your home
Check your closet. There may be hidden surprises to throw together a winning costume! Doing this will not only help save money but save space as well. With an average price of $45 for a Halloween costume, crafting your own at home is a great way to save money and involve family members or friends in the process.
Rent a costume
If the idea of spending money on buying a costume isn't quite appealing because you will only wear it once, consider renting. Renting a costume leaves room in the budget, and it truly is only temporary. Research rental companies on BBB.org and be sure to check the store policy regarding trying on costumes, inspect the condition of the costume, and read the rental agreement carefully before signing anything.
Buy in bulk
It may seem counter-intuitive, but buying more can save you money! Buying in bulk lessens the cost per item and ounce. Bulk buying can be convenient on a night like Halloween when there might be more trick-or-treaters out this year. Factory-wrapped candy will last even if not all of it is given to trick-or-treaters.
Always check the return policy
Seasonal shops carry unique items for a short time in a temporary location or online. When shopping at this type of vendor, understand the store’s return policy before making a purchase. Find out how long purchasers must keep the receipt or what happens if it is misplaced. Verifying store policies will help avoid mishaps like unwanted, broken, or faulty items being non-refundable. Remember: Buying a bunch of stuff with the intent of simply returning it after Oct. 31 is considered fraud.
BBB recommends consumers use a credit card for online purchases instead of a debit card, as credit cards provide additional protection and fraudulent charges are easier to dispute. Visit BBB.org/OnlinePurchaseScams for more tips on shopping online.
Seasonal stores If you decide to shop from a seasonal store, ask if they will be open after the holiday, how long they plan to stay open, and if they will accept returns after Halloween is over. If they plan to close on Nov. 1 or refuse returns after, either consider shopping elsewhere or take more time to be sure that item is exactly what you want before making the purchase.
More tips for seasonal “pop-up” stores:
• Ask the owner if there is a website in case you have to contact them later.
• Save every receipt.
• Use a credit card to dispute problem charges with the card’s issuer.
• Make sure you are clear on what items are ‘FINAL SALE.’
Attending a special event or visiting a haunted house Before purchasing tickets, research the group offering the experience and make sure that there are no complaints about the company hosting the event. BBB recommends consumers spend the time to research the event or company hosting the haunted house by:
• Checking out the company at BBB.org. Read what previous customers have to say and see how the business responds to complaints.
• Checking BBB Scam Tracker and see if other consumers have filed a report about the event host.
• Searching the business online by adding the word “Complaint”, “Reviews” or “Scam” after their name for different search results.
For more tips on buying tickets, visit BBB.org. ABOUT BBB:
For more than 100 years, the Better Business Bureau has been helping people find businesses, brands and charities they can trust. In 2020, people turned to BBB more than 220 million times for BBB Business Profiles on 6.2 million businesses and Charity Reports on 11,000 charities, all available for free at BBB.org. There are local, independent BBBs across the United States, Canada and Mexico.