How to get the most for your money this Halloween, writes THE PARTY PEOPLE CHIEF DEAN SALAKAS
As Halloween grows in Australia, trends have followed what’s accessible rather than what is desired. For years, tombstones, spider webs and skulls were all the rage and even today these are popular staples. Light-up pumpkins changed the game about 10 years ago and now they’re a staple.
While party stores have traditionally been the main source of Halloween decorations, there’s a LOT more variety now with larger retailers also stocking Halloween goods. We are now also seeing more niche retailers offer unique products.
This year, I think we are going to see a resurgence in pop culture trends such as Squid Game and Stranger Things which have historically been strong but new release seasons are sure to reinvigorate their demand. At Party People, we have bet big on Squid Game season 2, so I’m keen to see if I have predicted it right, or if I am going to be stuck with 10 years’ worth of stock.
The bad news this year will be pricing. Due to ongoing supply chain issues and increasing shipping costs, prices are going to be significantly higher this year, particularly on bulky items.
Animatronics have come in at nearly double the cost of last year due to freight. In 2021, we got a great deal on animatronics so we went big but only sold half. We had plenty of stock left, but this year, it sold out over the last few months by savvy shoppers who got a great deal. By August, we had sold almost the same number of animatronics for this Halloween as last year in total!
With rising living costs, people will be more price conscious this year so I don’t expect to see good sales on more quality pieces made from real metal, porcelain or latex. As a result stock might hang around longer in the season rather than disappearing before October!
There is some good news though. Most manufacturers and suppliers were fearing delays due to COVID so they’ve done their production runs early meaning most stock has arrived much earlier than usual. You’ll all have noticed that Halloween stock appeared in store waaaaaay earlier than it has in the past. We had 90% of our Halloween stock in August when, historically, we wouldn’t have it until late September. Most retailers seem to have had the same experience.
My hot tip for this year is to shop as early as you can and try to pick up last year’s stock at reduced prices before all the new stock hits the shelves. These will seem like a bargain compared to new stock at new stock prices.