Here’s How We’ll Spend a Bone-Chilling $9.1 Billion on Halloween This Year

girl in costume holding painted jack-o-lantern
Julia Raasch/Unsplash

The spookiest holiday of the year just got a bit more terrifying for Penny Hoarders looking to keep their budgets in check.

That’s because by the time you find your perfect costume, decorate your home and grab a few bags of candy for your neighbors’ ghouls and goblins, the holiday might cost you more than you spent last Halloween.

According to an annual survey of more than 7,000 consumers conducted by the National Retail Federation, Halloween spending in 2017 will hit a record high this year. The retail federation predicts 176 million Americans will spend a total $9.1 billion in preparation for the holiday.

That’s nearly triple the amount spent in 2005, and hundreds of millions more than the $8.4 billion spent last year. According to the survey, celebrating will cost the average American household $86.13.

The survey also showed that men are the bigger spenders. While women who celebrate Halloween spend $77 on average, men drop around $96.

Of course, the best way to save is to know what is most likely to drain your bank account.

What’s Taking the Biggest Bite Out of Your Halloween Budget

While 95% of those who plan to celebrate Halloween this year will buy candy to give away, the biggest chunk of your Halloween budget will likely go toward your costume.

About 69% of those who celebrate Halloween will dress up for the holiday and spend a collective $3.4 billion doing so.

The National Retail Federation also said the most popular costume for adults is a witch — and that’s a costume you can likely make for free with what’s already in your closet.

Here’s how the rest of Halloween spending breaks down:

  • $2.7 billion will go toward candy.
  • $2.7 billion will be spent on decorations.
  • $410 million will go toward greeting cards.
The Spooky Costs of Halloween in 2017
Kristy Gaunt – The Penny Hoarder

Halloween Shoppers Are Still Finding Ways to Save

While it’s true that people will spend more on Halloween this year than ever before, that doesn’t mean they don’t know how to find a deal.

In fact, the survey showed that 47.1% of Halloween shoppers said at least some of what they purchase will come from a discount store, while another 10.8% said they would head to a thrift store.

Stopping off at the your local dollar store or Goodwill could help you keep your budget under control while still making sure you have one of the spookiest houses on the block. One of our Penny Hoarding staff members did just that and decorated her entire home for just $50 with mostly Dollar Tree finds.

Desiree Stennett (@desi_stennett) is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. She is planning to spend a whopping $0 on Halloween this year because she hates fun things.

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