Two Dallas-area cities have been deemed delightfully frightful for Halloween 2018. Ahead of the spooky holiday, personal finance website WalletHub has released its annual list of the best cities for Halloween, and Irving (No. 9) and Plano (No. 20) make the top 20.
More specifically, they are among the top 20 cities for a hauntingly good time that won't scare the wallet, the researchers say. To come up with its list, WalletHub compared the 100 largest U.S. cities across 20 key metrics. They range from candy and chocolate stores per capita to average price per Halloween party ticket to share of potential trick-or-treat stops.
Irving clocked in with a total score of 60.18, scoring an especially high spot at No. 7 in the category of "Trick-or-Treater Friendliness." Plano pulled a total score of 56.02, and was just behind, at No. 13, for trick-or-treaters.
Interestingly, although the cities are a mere 25 miles apart, their "Halloween Weather" ranks were farther apart than expected; Irving ranked 32, and Plano ranked 18. (Unfortunately, there's rain in the trick-or-treat forecast for both cities this Halloween.)
Other Texas cities that appear on the list of 100 include: Laredo (No. 15), Arlington (No. 24), Houston (No. 32), Dallas (No. 33), El Paso (No. 39), Fort Worth (No. 48), Garland (No. 60), San Antonio (No. 62), Austin (No. 63), Corpus Christi (No. 73), and Lubbock (No. 89).
As a special treat — no tricks here — WalletHub worked with the National Retail Federation to provide some additional fun facts about how Americans plan to celebrate Halloween. Broken down in a format more digestible than a fun-size Snickers, here are some snippets of their findings:
- This year, the average U.S. household is expected to spend $86.79 on Halloween expenses, from decorations to treats to costumes. Collectively, that’s over $9 billion.
- More than 175 million Americans plan to partake in Halloween festivities this year.
- Consumers plan to spend $3.2 billion on costumes (purchased by 68 percent of Halloween shoppers), $2.7 billion on decorations (74 percent), $2.6 billion on candy (95 percent), and $400 million on greeting cards (35 percent).
- Among Halloween celebrants, 70 percent plan to hand out candy, 50 percent will decorate their home or yard, 48 percent will wear costumes, 45 percent will carve a pumpkin, 32 percent will throw or attend a party, 30 percent will take their children trick-or-treating, 21 percent will visit a haunted house and 18 percent will dress pets in costumes.
- Pet costumes continue to gain popularity, with nearly 20 percent of celebrants planning to dress their pets in costumes this year up from last year’s 16 percent. The most popular pet costume this year is a pumpkin, followed by hot dog and bumble bee.
- Among children who dress up, the most popular costume is princess, followed by superhero, Batman, Star Wars character, and witch.
- Most popular adult costumes this year are witch, vampire, zombie, pirate, and Avengers character.
“The economy is good and consumer confidence is high, so families are ready to spend on Halloween this year,” NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay says in a release. “Retailers are stocking up to supply children, pets and adults with their favorite decorations, candy and costumes.”
Just where is the best place to celebrate Halloween 2018? That would be New York City, which takes the pumpkin as No. 1, followed by Jersey City, New Jersey and Los Angeles. Haunting the bottom of the list are Memphis, Tennessee (No. 98); Baton Rouge, Louisiana (No. 99); and Albuquerque, New Mexico (No. 100).