WRAL SmartShopper

WRAL SmartShopper

Frugal Halloween tips on WRAL-FM

Posted October 15, 2012


I spoke with Bill & Lynda on WRAL-FM 101.5 on Monday morning about frugal Halloween ideas. Here are the topics we discussed including links.  You can hear the segment by clicking on the link in the box above for "Faye Prosser on Bill & Lynda in the Morning."

You know what the scariest thing about Halloween is for parents: the cost!

I know some parents who spend $50 or more on kids costumes every year!

Here are a few money saving tips to make Halloween expenses a little less frightening.


Look at your local Freecycle.org group HERE for free costumes. There are over 10,000 members of the Wake County freecycle group. Someone must be offering up a free costume!

Hit the thrift store for actual Halloween costumes or pieces of clothing that you can make into a costume.


It’s all about matching coupons with sales and drug store rebate deals. All the drug stores have candy deals this week that match well with available coupons including some that we received in the Sunday coupons yesterday. Look for deals that offer a reward when you buy a certain dollar amount and then couple that store reward with your coupons.

Remember that non-chocolate candy is usually less expensive than chocolates. Don’t feel like you have to get enough candy for every kid to get a handful. They will get a TON of candy throughout the night. You don’t have to fill their bag.

If you don’t want to contribute to tooth decay, go with some fun non-candy giveaways like temporary tattoos, pencils, erasers, stickers, mini bubble bottles. Walgreens has a number of Halloween items like pencils, Halloween plastic tumblers and Halloween activity books that go as low as 8 for $1 with the coupons in their ad from Sunday.

Candy buy back program at dentist offices: Many dental offices here in the Triangle give you $1 for every lb of candy you donate and then they donate the candy to our US military troops overseas! Click HERE for more information.

Don’t forget – hit those Halloween clearance sales for chocolate candy – it freezes well and solid chocolate bars can reappear for holiday baking in November and December.


Stock up for next year after Halloween this year. Starting November 1, Halloween is marked down to 50% off and 1 to 2 weeks later usually goes to 75% off. This is a great time to buy some bigger items you wanted but didn’t want to pay full price for. 

Feel free to share your other frugal Halloween tips!


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  • Faye Prosser - Smart Shopper Oct 22, 2012

    Great tips, shellsthoughts and grkmiley! Thanks for sharing!

  • grkmiley Oct 22, 2012

    I stock up on plain orange plates on Nov 1 (think easter, birthday, thanksgiving). The black plates would also be good for Over the hill birthday parties, new year eve, and graduation parties. Also I can't buy enough paper muffin cups!! Who cares if they are halloween themed.

    The halloween costumes are good deals on Nov 1 if you know what themes your kids are in to (spiderman, supergirl, princesses, pirates are going to be big hits with my kids for a long time). Also these would make great dress up clothes if they don't like them for halloween. These outfits would make great christmas presents especially the princess outfits/shoes/accessories perfect for dress up!

  • shellsthoughts Oct 16, 2012

    Tape Smarties candy all over your pants and now you're smarty pants. Tape a big picture of a quarter on your back and now you're a quarter back. Both of these are very inexpensive and cute.

  • Faye Prosser - Smart Shopper Oct 15, 2012

    That's cute, tldavids! We had a bunch of those in the segment from last Halloween like wrap yourself in tin foil and now you are leftovers. :-)

  • tldavids Oct 15, 2012

    clever ideas for costumes that don't require much money. One of the cleverest I've seen is to cut out some letter "P"s in construction paper or black felt and pin them to your top. Use makeup to give yourself a black eye and now you're a black eye'd pea. There are a number of websites that give similar cheap but quite clever ideas.