Saving Money on Halloween Candy

halloween candyHalloween is right around the corner.  Before you know it we will be passing out candy to all the neighborhood kids, and then passing out from our own food coma after eating all the Almond Joy’s out of your kids trick or treat bags.

Candy accounts for the biggest Halloween expense each year.  I read that in a typical year American’s spend about $2 billion on trick or treat candy.

Handing out candy to trick or treaters is fun, and you can save money. Use the following 7 tips to fill the trick or treat bags for less:

Wait to Buy

Since stores are usually in a hurry to get their Christmas merchandise out that they often start marking down Halloween candy a few days before Halloween even arrives.  Yeah the stores get crazy but you can take advantage of the savings by waiting  until a day or two before Halloween to buy your candy.

Plus it gives you another wee to look for candy coupons in the Sunday paper and online in the week’s leading up to Halloween. By doing this you can almost get your candy for free.

Don’t Buy Candy That You Like

Stick to non-chocolate candy items.  They tend to be less expensive.  If all you buy is candy you love, all you are going to eat is candy and you will have to go replenish your supplies.  Your candy will be gone before the day arrives.  Don’t buy candy you like.  Avoid the temptation, save your weight.  Another note on that subject, just because they put it in special wrappers that look festive for the holiday doesn’t mean they are any better than the candy you can get any other time of the year.

Ignore the Pressure to Supersize

Flip through a sales flyer in October, and you’ll see lots of pressure to buy full-size candy bars for trick or treaters. Stick to the funsize candy bars (they were good enough when we were kids), and leave the overspending to the old lady down the street.

Buy Whatever is Cheapest

There’s no prize for being the house with the best candy, so buy whatever is cheapest when you head to the store. Good bets: lollipops, sweet tarts, Tootsie Rolls, bubble gum.  Besides, if you have the best candy than word will get around on the street and you’ll run out to fast anyway.  My favorite candy to give out if the “Child’s Play” mix.

Recycle Unwanted Candy

If your kids are like mine they accumulate a lot of Halloween candy before they even head out to trick or treating.  They have class parties, scout parties, etc, where they get lots of candy. Cut back on the excess (and save  money) by having your kids sort out all the stuff that they don’t like. Then, use it for the trick or treaters who come to your door.

Kid’s Meals Toys

Scoop up all those long-forgotten kids’ meals toys that are taking up space in your kids’ rooms, and give them out in place of candy. It’s almost like getting paid to clean.

Hit the Dollar Store

Go to the dollar store and stock up on cheap stickers & accessories.  They have candy too, that is not my favorite, so I am less likely to over indulge and have to replenish my supply. Consider non-candy items like spider rings, glow stick bracelets, plastic stamps, or foam airplane gliders.