Halloween has not always been about giving out candy. In fact, Halloween candy was not even a factor in Halloween until about the 1950s when US candy makers had basically run out of holiday ideas that equated with giving candy like boxes of candy for Valentine’s Day. So, they looked at the idea of trick and treating and thought yes, candy can be pushed for the treats as Halloween candy. Of course, the general public responded with yes, we like that idea. Candy was economical, small, easy to buy and very easy to distribute. Then after some Halloween candy scares the wrapped candy industry decided to really push commercial wrapped candies as the only Halloween treat. However, there are many other choices to distribute instead of candy.
1) Foreign Coins
It doesn’t matter if you travel or not because many places sell bags of foreign coins especially those coins that may not even be in use anymore such as the coins of the many countries that switched to the Euro. Basically, the coins have no value other than for interest and there certainly are a lot of them around so they make a good Halloween candy alternative. And you could print up a small card with some of the country facts on it so the person receiving this treat instead of Halloween candy will also get some additional knowledge.
2) Colored Pencils
Another alternative to Halloween candy is giving four or five colored pencils which have been tied with a small pretty ribbon and bow makes a good alternate to candies. They are both useful and with a pretty bow look pretty also. Any child or even teenager would enjoy getting this substitute for their Halloween treat instead of Halloween candy.
3) US Small Denomination Coins
A few shiny pennies in a small net bag are a nice alternate Halloween candy treat. If you don’t have shiny pennies then take a handful of discolored pennies and put them in a bowl of ketchup and they will get shiny. Also cold boiled potato water will also clean up metal like the pennies so they are bright and shiny again. Tie the small net bag closed with a bright thin ribbon. You could include one nickel or shiny dine with several pennies also instead of Halloween candy.
4) Tiny Plastic Toys
You can find very small plastic toys at most dollar stores and discount stores. In fact often they are sold by the bag in quantities of fifty or so for a few dollars. These are certainly cheaper than Halloween candy today and will last longer too. Then all you have to do is make up small net bags of them with three or four in each net bag. Tie the top of the bag with a small orange and black ribbon as a great Halloween candy alternative.
5) Sports Related Items
Another Halloween candy alternative like key chains with the local sports team or local school teams hanging on the key ring. Often these are available in bulk at discount stores once the particular sports season is over. Plan ahead and get them cheap for a perfect Halloween candy alternate. Or if your husband is a golfer give out gold tees. It might seem off beat to the kids but if they are imprinted with a local gold club on them it is kind of like a souvenir.
6) Fun Shaped Erasers
Erasers come in all different shapes like ducks or dolls so get a large quantity of them and offer them instead of Halloween candy. You could mix them in a bowl with some of the erasers that go on top of pencils along with the golf ball tees in number 5) or mix them in a bowl with lots of other small items and let the kids pick a few out.
7) Pencils Imprinted With ‘Happy Halloween’
Each season companies imprint the various seasonal greetings on pencils and Halloween is no different. Offer pencils imprinted with ‘Happy Halloween’ on them as an alternate to Halloween candy treats. Pencils can always be used by everyone and they do make an unexpected nice treat to give out on Halloween.
Stickers come in all colors and types. You can get sports related stickers, holiday stickers for any holiday including Halloween so stickers make a great Halloween candy alternate. The stickers may be animals or cartoons or dolls or stars or even words like thank you or reminders for appointments all of which come in handy. Of course if a child gets something like a sticker to remind them of a dentist appointment they may not be really happy campers. So you might just stick to more traditional children’s stickers. You can get them in packages for a small price. Don’t hand out the packages but one page of stickers per person.
9) Small Boxes Of Crayons
You can find small boxes of crayons at discount stores for little money. Most kids will enjoy getting a small box of crayons as an alternate to Halloween candy because they can use them until they wear out. Or if you can’t find small boxes of crayons then buy a larger assortment and again take four of them and tie them together in a bundle with a black and orange ribbon on them with a bow. They look pretty and are useful also. You can also get gel crayons but these are usually more expensive. However if you can get an assortment of them in silver or gold colors you can hand out a single gel pen to each trick or treater.
10) Fast Food Coupons
Fast food coupons like McDonald’s coupons are an alternate to Halloween candy. You can get small denomination coupons and give them to the kids as their treat. Or instead of fast food coupons give out unused lottery scratchers. Of course someone older will have to turn them in if they are a winning ticket but the kids will be pleased with the winnings.