I recently stopped by a local department store to pick up costumes for my two sons. I was floored by the prices; $30 a piece for costumes they’ll wear one night a year? Yikes. There just has to be a cheaper way to do Halloween, right?
There are ways to do Halloween on a budget – and you don’t have to be a crafty mom who can create a homemade costume. If you’re willing to get creative, you can find great costumes for all of your children without breaking the bank. Here are five tips for saving money on your child’s Halloween costume.
Have a costume swap
Get together with other moms who have kids about the same age as your own, and trade old Halloween costumes. The super hero costume your child wore last year will seem brand new to another child! And your child may love a costume another child has outgrown. After Halloween is over you can give the costumes back, or if everyone agrees, keep them for playing dress up.
Put your PJs on
Today many pajama outfits for children are styled to look like costumes. You can find pajamas with dinosaur feet, fairy wings, and superhero capes. Why not spend your money on something like this that your child can use past Halloween? The cost of a pair of pajamas is less than that of many popular costumes, and your child can wear them for many months to come. As an added bonus, a warm pair of pajamas can protect your child from the cold on a chilly night of trick-or-treating.
Shop a consignment store
Many children’s clothing consignment stores have like-new Halloween costumes at a fraction of the cost of a new costume. If your child has her heart set on being a particular character for Halloween, check a consignment store before buying the costume brand new. You can also use consignment stores as a way to fund your costume purchase; sell some old costumes at a consignment store, and use the money you earn to purchase a new costume for your child. Next year, you can sell that costume to the consignment store, and continue your savings.
There are many online shops that deal exclusively in selling costumes. Also, there are sites like ebay and Craigslist, where other parents may be looking to sell used costumes. Shopping online allows you to comparison shop and find the best possible price before you buy. Shopping online also saves the hassle of going from store-to-store to find the exact costume your child wants. If you decide to shop online for your child’s costume, be sure to leave enough time for delivery, and don’t forget to figure shipping costs into your costume budget.
This tip won’t help you this year, but it may make things easier in the years to come. On November 1st, head out to the stores and check the Halloween costume section. Many stores will have their remaining stock of costumes on clearance. Stock up on new costumes for next year! I like to buy a couple of future Halloween costumes, as well as some costumes I can use for Christmas presents – my kids love to dress up, no matter the season!
Halloween is scary fun; don’t let the cost of costumes frighten you! Follow these tips to ensure you and your child have a Happy Halloween.
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