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Whether you prefer your Halloween scary or silly, it’s always a good occasion to throw a family party. Yet going all out with special effects and costumes (on top of the usual party costs) can be a real drain on your bank account! Here are a few money-saving tips to help you throw a Halloween bash without going broke.

Set a time and date

Planning ahead gives you plenty of time to shop around for the best prices on costumes, decorations, party food, and more. Give yourself a few weeks to plan your spooky shindig. The actual timing of your party is also important. If you’re entertaining young children, it shouldn’t last more than two hours. Plan the party outside of main mealtimes so that you can save a bit of money on catering. Snacks and drinks are all that’s expected from a mid-afternoon party.

Give old costumes new life

Part of the fun of any Halloween party is playing dress-up! If it’s expected that guests arrive in costume, be sure to note this on the invitations. Still, it’s helpful to provide some extra accessories to play around with for the kids. Pull out your child’s dress-up box and offer a costume corner. If you’ve amassed old Star Wars or clown costumes from years past, they can also be used as creative decorations around the house.

Hosting a party is a fun experience, but it can quickly become costly. Here are some tips to host a Halloween party cheaply and successfully.

Go DIY with decorations

The atmosphere is everything when it comes to Halloween! Get the little ones involved with some holiday crafts that can do double duty as decorations for your party. Paper lanterns painted pumpkins, and spooky cotton spider webs are just a few ideas. There’s no need to get overly elaborate with the décor – basic orange and black works well for Halloween.

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Plan simple entertainment

Like the decorations, entertainment can be fairly simple because the costumes will be the main focus here. Put on a holiday-themed playlist and hold a dance contest, hold a scavenger hunt, or play musical statues. A costume contest can also be a highlight of the party. Just be sure that you have an award for everyone if your guests are young.

Hosting a party is a fun experience, but it can quickly become costly. Here are some tips to host a Halloween party cheaply and successfully.

Take lots of photos!

You can double up on your dress-up corner with a DIY photo booth for added fun, or designate a particular family member to be the party photographer. Take a photo of each guest as they enter the party and print out pictures as souvenirs.

Finally, it just wouldn’t be a party without gift bags to take home, and for Halloween, these will probably be filled with sweet treats. There’s no need to splash out on these – buy your candy in bulk and you’ll save.

Talk to me in the comments, please:

What other tips would you add to have a family-friendly Halloween party on a budget?