The Price of Halloween: How to cut costs on costumes, thrills, and candy

American Express estimates the average family will spend $108 this Halloween.


average family will spend $108 on Halloween this year

, according to American Express.

While that's $15 less than what the average family shelled out last year, it can be a scary number, when you think the holiday shopping season is just around the corner.

CNBC offers a few tips to help tame your costs.

1. First, consider the candy. The bigger the bag, the less you'll pay per piece. You can split the cost of a few bulk bags at your local warehouse club with a friend or neighbor, but then, only open the bags as needed. That way, you can return the leftovers if you overestimate the number of trick-or-treaters that arrive on your doorstep.

2. Second, search for cheaper alternatives to score cheap thrills. Visiting a haunted house or ghost tour can set a family back at least $50. Check discount ticket websites, such as Goldstar, which often have the same tickets for half price. Some attractions may also offer discount access for visiting on a weeknight, or earlier in the night, instead of on a weekend at primetime.

3. C

ostumes can easily be the most expensive part of your bill, at $30 or more apiece. Compare your options online and in store, factoring in savings like coupons and costs like expedited shipping. Look beyond Halloween pop-up shops

. Big-box


often have a

big costume selection. Thrift stores offer secondhand costumes for just a few bucks. They can also be a great source of cheap pieces for D

o-It-Yourself disguises, like rippable duds for a zombie or an old prom dresses for a princess.

4. W

hile you're comparing prices, check what's included. The costume displayed on the bag isn't always
in the bag. Pictured hats, shoe covers and accessories like a wand or sword may be extra, and have potential to quickly double the price of your costume.

(Information from CNBC used in this report)