The Oban Blog

Halloween 2016 – trends from around the world

Halloween still remains one of the most anticipated holiday celebrations of the year in the US. This year, US consumers spent 8.4 billion dollars for the Halloween season,*and it is no longer an event solely dedicated to kids. Millennials (approximately 18 to 35 years old) like to get involved and turn to social media for inspiration for their costumes. Depending on who you’re targeting when selling Halloween outfits and accessorises, it is good to know that women are more than twice as likely to be influenced by Pinterest, while men are over 50 percent more likely than women to turn to YouTube for ideas.**

In the UK’s it is now the third biggest retail event, trailing closely behind Christmas and Easter, representing a £330m industry, according to the International Business Times.

However is Halloween a major retail and e-commerce event in other parts of the world? We conducted a survey amongst our Local In-Market Experts (LIMEs) to see how this tradition is celebrated, if at all, in their country. We collected data from 16 different countries. Most Europeans consider Halloween an occasion to throw a party, wear scary costumes and eat a lot of themed treats. But is this how everyone feels in other countries around the world? Here is what our LIMEs told us:

Korbinian in Laos:
“This tradition hasn’t quite made it all the way to Laos yet. However some of the wealthier families have started celebrating it, mainly to do something fun with their children.”

Dima in Russia:
“Halloween is generally perceived as a western holiday. We celebrate it in a very similar way to the US. Kids love the opportunity to get dressed up and eat lots of sweets!”

Reem in Egypt:
“Halloween is not part of our culture and we do not have an equivalent. Most people don’t do anything for it. However some schools have started celebrating it”.

José in Mexico:
“Halloween is an opportunity to dress up and for kids to go trick or treating. However “Dios de los muertos”, a mystical celebration of death, is THE event that will be celebrated by everyone and everywhere in Mexico. “

Ela in Germany:
“Halloween got bigger in the last ten years. It doesn’t have a deep meaning but it gives people the opportunity to throw parties and a second chance to get dressed up after carnival (happening in February).”

Most respondents said they will be attending or hosting a Halloween party. This explains the fact that 40% said they will be spending money on Halloween themed food, 32% on adult costumes and 32% on decorations.
We also asked our LIMEs whether they would be shopping in store or online. There seems to be a preference for shopping in store globally. 42% said they would shop in store, while 21% online only with 29% would use both methods to find everything they need for the party season.

*Annual Halloween expenditure in the United States from 2016 to 2016, statista,
**The evolution of Halloween: 3 trends to watch, National Retail Federation,