HOW TO TRICK-OR-TREAT! In 5 Easy Steps | Flippin' Katie
How to Trick or Treat
The jack-o-lanterns are carved, your costume is all picked out, and the sun is just starting to set on a spooky Halloween night. Now it’s time for the best part: trick or treating! Grab a group of friends, take a couple flashlights, and get ready to indulge that sweet tooth. With a few simple tips, you can have a safe and successful trick or treating experience, complete with a whole pile of tasty candy. Happy Halloween!
If you want to go trick or treating, choose a fun costume and head out around 6:30 on Halloween night. When you see a house that’s decorated or that has all the lights on, go up and knock on the door and knock. When someone answers, smile and say “Trick or treat!” When the person offers you the candy bowl, only take one piece of candy unless they encourage you to take more. Smile and say “Thank you!” before you head to the next house.Keep reading for tips on staying safe while trick or treating!
Going from House to House
Start trick or treating around 6 or 6:30.You probably want to start trick or treating as soon as you get home from school, but be patient! Have a good dinner to fuel you up for the night, and wait until the sun starts to get a little lower before you head out. Aiming to leave by 6 or 6:30 is a good goal.
- If you’re going with younger kids, you might need to leave even earlier to make sure you get home by bedtime.
- Some smaller towns might have specified trick or treating times to follow.
Wear or make a costume that you can move in easily.You can’t go trick or treating without a costume! When you’re deciding what to dress up as, choose a costume that doesn’t drag on the ground, which might make you trip in the dark. Make sure your shoes are comfortable, too—you’ll be walking around in them all night! Avoid wearing masks, as well, which can make it hard to see. Go with face paint instead!
Animal: cat, cow, bumblebee, bear
Prince or princess
Cowboy or cowgirl
Character from your favorite TV show, movie, book
Bring a pillowcase or bag to hold candy.You can collect candy in whatever container you want, but a pillowcase tends to hold the most. You can also go with a pumpkin-shaped container or a Halloween tote bag. Try to bring something you can hold on to easily with a strap, and make sure it’s strong enough to hold a few pounds of candy.
- You can even choose a bag that matches your costume. If you dress up as a mermaid, for example, you could have a bag with shiny sequins on it like scales, or bring one shaped like a fish.
Go up to a house only if it has the lights on.Look for houses that have their front porch light on, with jack-o-lanterns and other Halloween decorations out front. This means that the people are home and celebrating—and ready to give you candy! If the house’s lights are off, they’re probably not around. Skip it and go on to the next one instead.
Take candy from a bowl on the ground, if it’s there.Some people will leave a bowl of candy on their front step when they know they’ll be out on Halloween night. In this case, just take one candy from the bowl (unless there’s a note saying you can take more) and move on.
Knock on the door or ring the doorbell.If no one answers your knock after a minute or so, you can try one more time. If no one answers after that, just go on to the next house. It might feel a little disappointing, but you’ll save time and get more candy if you move on fast.
- Don’t touch any Halloween decorations or anything on their porch on your way up to the door. You don’t want to break anything!
Say “Trick or treat!” and take one piece of the candy. When they open the door, smile and say “Trick or treat!” They’ll probably say “Happy Halloween!” or compliment you on your costume, then hold out the candy. Don’t hog the bowl to search for your favorite piece—just take the best one that you see on top. If you don’t like any you see, just grab a piece anyways to be polite. You can always trade later with your friends!
- Just take one piece of candy, unless they say you can grab more.
- You can say “trick or treat” in a loud voice, but don’t yell.
Thank them and wish them a happy Halloween.After you’ve grabbed your candy, look up and say “Thank you! Happy Halloween!” This shows that you’re polite and appreciative, and is especially important if you decide to come back next year. They might remember you and give you an extra piece!
Walk on the sidewalk to get to the next house.No matter how quickly you want to move on to the next house, stick to the driveways and sidewalks to get there. It’s rude to cut across people’s lawns or gardens, and you might trample their shrubs or flowers by mistake.
Head home by 8:30pm, at the latest.You might want to stay out all night getting more candy, but houses will start to run out as it gets later. Some people might want to go to sleep, too! Aim to be home by 8:30 so you can start checking out your candy and get to sleep at a good time.
- It can also get more dangerous to stay out past 8:30 or so, as fewer trick or treating groups are out.
- Ask your parents beforehand if they want you home by a certain time.
Trick or Treating Safely
Go in a group with two or more friends.Trick or treating by yourself isn’t any fun, and it’s not as safe, either. Instead, head out with 2-4 of your friends! If you’re under age 10, you should go with an adult, too.
- In groups of 4 or more, try to stick with a buddy just in case you get separated from your main group.
- Set up a designated meeting place in case anyone gets separated from your group. Bring cell phones if you have them, too!
- You can even coordinate your costumes with your friends. Try going as the Three Musketeers, the Avengers, M&M’s, or characters from a TV show, book, or movie, like Harry Potter or Winnie the Pooh.
Trick or treat in a familiar neighborhood.By trick or treating in your neighborhood, you’ll be less likely to get lost and can easily head home as soon as you get tired. You’ll also be asking for candy from neighbors who know you, so they’ll be more likely to give you an extra candy or two!
- Agree with your parents on a time to be home by.
- To save time and avoid getting lost, plan out your route beforehand. You can even walk it a few times in the days before to ensure you know where you’re going.
Bring a flashlight or wear a glow necklace to light your way.Sidewalks and driveways can get dark as the sun falls. Bring along a flashlight or a glow stick so you can see, or wear glow necklaces for more convenience. The light will also help cars see you if you need to cross the street.
Walk, don’t run.It’s hard to see in the dark, and even though you might want to get to the next house as fast you can, tripping and skinning a knee will bring your night to a fast end. Make sure you’re walking and use basic street safety, too. Look both ways when you cross the street, and only cross at corners or crosswalks.
Don’t eat any candy until you can sort through it at home.Save your appetite and haul your loot home before you dig in. You want to be able to remove any candy that’s not in its original wrapper, or looks like it’s been opened. Another great reason to wait: trading! Once you’re home, dump out your candy and sort through it. Trade with your friends to get more of your favorite candies.
Avoiding Bad Candies
Candy that’s open, ripped, or unwrapped.
Homemade candy or treats.
QuestionI can't afford a costume and I can't make one. What do I do?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerYou could be a character from a TV show that wears regular clothes, or you could do the old cut-holes-in-a-sheet and go as a ghost.Thanks!
QuestionIs it normal to trick-or-treating at the age of 12?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerIt's not uncommon to go trick-or-treating when you're 12, and most kids take advantage of this tradition as long as possible. If you're tall for your age, go with younger kids in a group so you don't look out of placeThanks!
QuestionDoes it matter what I am dressed as?Community AnswerGoodness, no! Just make sure that your costume isn't obscene or sexual, and you're ready to go!Thanks!
QuestionWhen I say "Trick or treat!" some people always says "Trick!" but I don't have any! Please give me some ideas!Muffin TopCommunity AnswerYou could do a fancy trick like a cartwheel or say a tongue twister or whatever special thing you can do! Be safe and have fun!Thanks!
QuestionHow do I know if kids will come to my house to trick or treat?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerPut decorations outside, make it colorful and bright. If you live in the suburbs, there should be at least some people coming to your house.Thanks!
QuestionCan we eat our candy while collecting it?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerOf course! Just be careful to check that nothing is already opened -- you'll want to throw any that are away, since they may not be safe to eat.Thanks!
QuestionI love this article but what if my parents are with me?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerStill do the same. Just make sure that your parents see what you are doing and know where you are.Thanks!
QuestionWhat should I do if my friends aren't going to go trick-or-treating with me? I don't want to go alone!wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerAsk your parents to come with you -- or your siblings, if you have any.Thanks!
QuestionCan I give the person at the door candy instead of receiving it from them?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerYes, indeed! That's a wonderful reversal of the "gimme-gimme" attitude most trick-or-treaters come to the door with!Thanks!
QuestionWhat if my parents STILL don't let me go trick or treating without them?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerJust put up with it, and maybe ask them if they could possibly walk a fairly long way away from you, so you look like you're on your own.Thanks!
- Don’t forget to fuel up before you head out! Have a good dinner with some protein, like chili or chicken, and plenty of fruits and veggies to make sure you stay energized while you’re out trick or treating.
- It’s acceptable to go trick or treating up through your mid-teens.
- Be very careful when walking around at night, especially on Halloween. Always stay in a group, and look both ways before you cross the street.
- Tell your group and the people at the house if you have any food allergies, especially to common candy ingredients like nuts or gluten.
Video: How to Trick or Treat
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