Anyone on a budget can enjoy Halloween with a little creativity and imagination, whether you’re a parent who is spending it with your kids or a single person who is excited to party the night away.
Even if you’re practicing cost-cutting measures this year, you can still have fun on this festive occasion without breaking the bank. Keep reading to discover affordable Halloween projects that you and your family or friends can do together.
1. Affordable Costume Ideas
There’s no need to buy expensive costumes at the store or to order a customized outfit from a specialty shop. Here are some cost-effective ways to dress up this October.
Transform Existing Outfits Into Costumes
Get ready to raid your closets at home. Your kids might already own sports attire that they can use as athletic costumes, such as their basketball uniforms or football jerseys. They may also have outfits from other extracurricular outfits that they can use during trick or treat, including ballet tutus or ice skating ensembles.
Adults like you may have potential costumes buried in your wardrobe. You can dig up your summer wear like sarongs or flora shirts for a beach-inspired get-up. You may glam up your boring office wear by wearing sunglasses or spiky heels to achieve a sleek spy look.
Use Household Items To Create a DIY Costume
You can also make your own unique Halloween garb simply by using ordinary items around your house. Assemble old boxes together, cut out the necessary holes, and paint them to create a robot costume. Wear your spandex gym clothing and use a pillowcase as a cape to morph into a superhero.
2. Fun Economical Activities
There’s no need to pay for pricey theme park tickets to maximize your Halloween enjoyment. You can participate in budget-friendly activities or organize your own.
Visit your local farm with your children or your friends to explore a farm maze. These mazes are typically created out of cornfields using different designs. They commonly feature various trails to give you a sense of adventure. Farm mazes are considered popular tourist spots because they highlight harvest crops which are usually showcased during the fall season.
Since Halloween is a day of mystery, give your kids or buddies the chance to exercise their sleuthing skills by hosting a mystery game party. You can hold a role-playing game where your guests can try to guess who the culprit is. You could also set up a Halloween treasure hunt where you give the partygoers clever clues to help them figure out where the prizes are hidden.
Alternatives to Apple Bobbing (a once cheap tradition facing a downturn due to the pandemic)
Apple bobbing is a classic Halloween tradition in the U.S. However, COVID-19 has people thinking twice about the potential spread of germs through such activities. PureScienceRX.com lists some fun alternatives that party planners who are concerned about the sanitary conditions of bobbing for apples. They list fun games such as hanging apples, fishing for apples, candy catch, and more.
In Hanging Apples you tie strings to the end of the stems and hang the apples from a clothesline, then the contestant must eat as much of the apple as they can without using their hands.
Fishing for Apples consists of using a magnet on the end of a string that is tied to a stick. Fashion a pole of sorts and cut out paper apples and attach paper clips or something similarly metallic to them. The children then catch as many as they can (one at a time) for 30 seconds or so.
Candy Catch is super simple. Have the kiddos line up with their plastic pumpkins and play toss with candy. If they catch it they get it. Do you remember playing 500 with a baseball or tennis ball as a kid? This is the same thing but comes with edible treats and kids will love it.
Hanging Apples sounds particularly fun and you better have the video recorder on and ready to share with us when you try these alternatives!
Educational Skeleton Game
Skeletons don’t always have to be spooky. They can be educational too! Label a skeleton with the names of the major bones of the body. Spend time teaching your guests what the bones are called. Remove the labels afterward and let the guessing game begin. The kid or adult who correctly identifies the highest number of bones wins the game.
3. Budget-Conscious, Healthy Food
A Halloween celebration is definitely not complete without food. Party fare is important because it gives extra energy to your excited guests. It also allows the partygoers to relax around each other as they enjoy the nourishment together. Still, there’s no need to spend an excessive sum on a lavish feast.
Serve Healthy Food Options
Candies and chocolates are typically distributed to kids and adults alike during trick-or-treating. Nevertheless, you don’t need to limit yourself to serving sweet delicacies during the festivities. You can prepare autumn-inspired food options that are health-conscious and budget-conscious at the same time. Bake a pumpkin pie, pop some lightly buttered popcorn, and serve a basket of nuts and apples.
Organize a Potluck
A good way to split the food expenses among family members or a group of friends is to organize a Halloween potluck. Assign each person or couple to bring a specific dish or beverage to the gathering.
If most participants don’t have the time to prepare meals beforehand, they can request a point person to be in charge of the cooking. The rest of the crew can contribute a set amount per head to defray the cost of food shopping and preparations.
4. DIY Home or Office Decor
Halloween decorations can set the right mood for your festivities. However, you might end up spending a lot if you splurge on ready-made ornaments that are available in commercial stores.
As an alternative, you and your kids can make your own décor at home. Use orange and black construction paper to make banners and streamers. Fluff up some cotton until it resembles cobwebs. Leave space for a blank DIY wall where guests can draw or paint their own Halloween masterpieces.
Aside from this, you can visit your local secondhand store to shop for donated Halloween décor. These pre-loved adornments are certainly more affordable compared to brand-new ones.
5. Shared Transportation / Ride-Share
Carpooling and other forms of shared transportation can help you minimize your travel expenses during Halloween.
If you are a parent, consider coordinating with the moms and dads of your kids’ friends. You could possibly work out a carpool arrangement so your children can ride together as they trick or treat in your neighborhood and beyond.
If you are a single adult, you can also ride together with your BFFs as you hop from party to party hosted by acquaintances from your social circle. Aside from saving gas money, you can also spend more quality time together with your besties.
Try These Affordable Halloween Projects This Year
Halloween on a budget can still be a blast if you try out creative, cheap costume ideas and fun, economical activities on this special occasion. Start flexing your creative muscles by carrying out these affordable Halloween projects this year.
Finny the Finance Bot says…
How can I save money on Halloween?
Halloween can be an expensive holiday, but there are ways to save money and still have a fun celebration. Here are some tips for saving money on Halloween:
- Plan ahead: Start planning your Halloween costume and decorations early, so you have time to find the best deals.
- Make your own costume: Instead of buying a pre-made costume, consider making your own. You can use items you already have around the house, or buy inexpensive materials from a craft store.
- Host a Halloween party: Instead of going out to expensive Halloween events, consider hosting your own party at home. You can decorate your home and provide food and drinks for a fraction of the cost of going out.
- Shop clearance sales: Look for Halloween decorations and costumes on clearance after Halloween is over. You can save money and have items for next year.
- Use discount coupons: Look for coupons and promo codes for Halloween items, such as costumes and decorations, online or in your local store circulars.
- Reuse items from previous years: Consider reusing costumes, decorations, and props from previous years instead of buying new ones.
- Consider alternative activities: Instead of spending money on expensive Halloween events, consider alternative activities, such as visiting a pumpkin patch or going on a hayride.
By following these tips, you can save money and still have a fun and festive Halloween celebration!
The author generated Finny the Finance Bot’s text in part with GPT-3, OpenAI’s large-scale language-generation model. Upon generating draft language, the author reviewed, edited, and revised the language to their own liking and takes ultimate responsibility for the content of this publication.