Halloween’s greatest trick? Getting Americans to spend more than $9 billion annually on the candy-coated holiday. But here’s the treat: with a little ingenuity and a whole lot of creativity, you can celebrate this season without ghosting your family’s budget.

Boo it Yourself

Americans spend $3.2 billion on Halloween costumes annually; followed by $2.7 billion in decorations. 

Sometimes, the best Halloween is the one you make yourself. DIY can be more than just a money saver — it’s an opportunity to create Halloween memories that last a lifetime.

Thrift and second-hand stores like Goodwill and Savers offer a treasure trove of clothing, accessories and other items that you can use to design a unique Halloween. Your costume budget could be as little as $10, but there is no cap on imagination. Plus, you can use the shopping experience as an opportunity to teach your kids about budgeting.

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The Trick to Treats

Americans are expected to spend a staggering $2.6 billion on candy this Halloween. That translates into tons of candy corn. Instead of stockpiling expensive bags of candy for trick-or-treaters, get together with your neighbors and throw a Halloween potluck with plenty of games, special treats and, of course, a costume contest. As the saying goes: It takes a (haunted) village.

If trick-or-treating is a must-do for your family, shop around to get the best deal on your candy. Check out your local Sunday paper and websites like coupons.com for money-saving deals on the season’s most craveable sweets.

Scare Up Some Fun in Your Community

Fun fact: most of our locations get pretty into Halloween. Many of them not only dole out free treats for the kiddos — but transform their bank branches into scenes from a League of their Own, Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory or into Batman’s Layer — for the festive holiday.

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You can also check out tons of free community events to relieve some of the pressure and the stress of party planning. Here’s just a sampling:

Colorado events:

Arizona events:

California events: 

Mile High on the Cheap, Arizona Central, Palm Springs Life and other community calendars have complete listings of seasonal events.

Creep it to Yourself

Holidays are what you make of them. It really doesn’t matter how much you spend on Halloween. What matters is the time spent with people you care about, making memories. Put in some classic Halloween movies, tell scary stories in the dark and spend the season with your loved ones.

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