CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – Everyone is preparing to celebrate Halloween in just a few weeks, but how can you do celebrate on a budget?

According to the Better Business Bureau (BBB), the total Halloween spending is expected to reach a record $12.2 billion, which exceeds last year’s record of $10.6 billion. 73 percent of people will be participating in Halloween-related activities this year, which is also up from last year’s 69 percent.

There are ways to celebrate Halloween on a budget while being fun and stylish. BBB recommends to follow these tips:

Look around your home

Check your closet. There are probably hidden surprises to help you throw together a costume! Getting creative will not only help save money but also space.

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. Research rental companies, check the store policy regarding trying on costumes, inspect the condition of the outfit, 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. Budgeting can be especially handy on a night like Halloween, considering there might be more trick-or-treaters this year. Factory-wrapped candy will last a long time, even if you have leftovers.

Always check the return policy

Seasonal shops carry unique items for a short period in a temporary location or online. When shopping for a seasonal vendor, understand the store’s return policy before purchasing. It is important to remember that buying a bunch of stuff with the intent of simply returning it after October 31 is considered fraud.

Shop smart online

When shopping from an online website, the first step is ensuring the URL starts with “HTTPS” and includes a lock symbol. The S in “HTTPS” stands for secure. Look up the website’s privacy policy and contact information. If it is not clearly listed, or they only have an email as the point of contact, take that as a big red flag and shop elsewhere.

Also, be sure to use your credit card instead of your debit card, as credit cards not only provide additional protection but also easier to dispute a fraudulent charge. 

Seasonal stores

If you decide to shop from a seasonal store, ask whether or not they will be open after the holiday, how long they plan to stay open, and if they will accept returns after Halloween. If they plan to close up shop on November 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 must contact them later.
  • Save every receipt.
  • Use a credit card to dispute problem charges with the 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.

Local News

WWLP-22News, an NBC affiliate, began broadcasting in 1953 by providing local news, network, syndicated, and local programming to western Massachusetts. Follow 22News on X @WWLP22News, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.