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Americans Will Spend a Terrifying Amount On Halloween This Year

October 27, 2017, 3:18 PM UTC

Halloween’s a holiday full of scares and surprises, but the biggest one of all could be the sticker shock that comes when you add up how much you’ve spent for the holiday.

A pair of new studies finds that average per person Halloween spending ranges from $169 to $183. To put it another way, if you were to boycott All Hallows’ Eve throughout your lilfe, you could save nearly $12,000 by the time you turned 65. And that’s not even including the cavities from all the candy you’d consume.

A LendEDU poll of 1,000 people found the average consumer will spend $169.81 on Halloween this year. That spending ramps up quickly when the shoppers are narrowed down. A Harris/CIT Bank study finds the average millennial will spend $183 this year.


Halloween 2012 In New York City
Average spending on Halloween increased by $1.5 billion in 2016.Photo by Jemal Countess — Getty Images
Photo by Jemal Countess — Getty Images

Whether you’re going trick or treating or to the hottest Halloween party, you can’t do so without a costume. And to make an impression, you’re going to need to cough up some cash. This year’s most popular costumes, like Wonder Woman, Harley Quinn or, if you really want to freak someone out, clowns, don’t come cheap.

The LendEDU poll found that costume spending took up 42% of people’s Halloween budgets, coming in at $70.81. Millenials, actually, will spend less, with Harris/CIT putting the average costume spend at $66 per person.


Elizabeth Warren Hands Out Halloween Candy
Barry Chin — Boston Globe via Getty Images

No one wants to be known as the cheapskate on the block who gives out candy corn. That’s just begging to wake up to a front yard full of toilet paper. Maybe you can’t afford full-sized candy bars, but at least give out mini-Snickers or Skittles.

That doesn’t come without a price, though. LendEDU says the average American will spend $61.80 on candy this year. The Harris/CIT poll puts the number at $38 (which is understandable as millinneals are more likely to attend parties than wait for little ones at home).


Halloween Decorations 2017
Americans will spend as much as $49 per person on Halloween decorations in 2017.Chris Morris
Chris Morris

Neighborhood battles for the best Halloween decorations are becoming fiercer. Whether you opt for a giant inflatable ghost, spider webs, animatronic witches or a fog machine, decorations are becoming a bigger part of the Halloween budget. LendEdu puts the average spend at $37.70, while the Harris/CIT study places it at $49.

Overall, says Harris/CIT, Halloween spending is expected to top $15 billion this year.