Use these trick-or-treat safety tips to ensure a fun and safe trick-or-treating experience this Halloween.
Trick-or-Treating with Kids
Halloween is fast approaching, and for most kids, it means dressing up in costumes and going trick-or-treating.
For a kid, ringing doorbells or knocking and shouting the famous mantra: “Trick or Treat!” while collecting free candy is the absolute best.
For adults, we understand there are safety measures to be considered for a fun trick-or-treat experience.
As a former police officer, safety is always on my mind while out and about with my children, this Halloween is no different. Check out my top safety tips for trick-or-treating with your kids this Halloween.
Plan your Route Ahead of Time
Planning and sticking to your trick-or-treating route is an important safety measure for parents and kids during Halloween.
For starters, it helps you avoid taking children through potential dangers like busy roads, areas with no sidewalks, or unfamiliar neighborhoods.
Plan to trick-or-treat along a route you know is well-lit, has proper crosswalks, high pedestrian traffic, and homes offering candy to trick-or-treaters.
This planning will help you optimize your time and the amount of candy you can collect.
Ask around to learn the best streets for trick-or-treaters. Nothing will ruin Halloween faster than trick-or-treating on some lonely dark street where the homeowners are not even handing out candy.
Set Clear Rules and Boundaries
Before heading out on your trick-or-treating adventures, take a moment to discuss the rules and expectations with your children.
Set rules for your kids to follow when collecting candy, like sticking together, not entering homes, remaining aware of their surroundings, and not eating any candy you have not inspected and approved.
Avoid trick-or-treating alone.
You should always accompany your children as they trick-or-treat to help them navigate busy sidewalks, watch for traffic, and ensure everyone stays safe.
Avoid Homemade Treats
Be extremely cautious of accepting homemade treats from strangers. While most people may have good intentions, accepting treats from strangers is risky.
The ingredients in homemade treats cannot be verified, and there is the risk that the treats may have been made in unsanitary conditions.
As someone with several food allergies, I know the risk of possible allergy cross-contamination in homemade treats is not worth the trouble.
By sticking to store-bought, pre-packaged, and labeled options, you can better protect your children from potential health risks and enjoy a safer and happier Halloween experience.
Consider Alternative Options
For some, taking children door-to-door to trick-or-treat may be unsafe or impossible because of the layout of their neighborhood.
Fortunately, many alternative options are just as fun and festive, and I’ve tried almost all of them with my children.
Instead of going door-to-door, consider attending a trunk-or-treat event hosted by your church, community, school, or a local organization.
These events can provide a safer and more supervised environment for your children to gather candy.
One year, I took my children to a nearby shopping mall, where they offered a trick-or-treating event inside the mall. The kids got plenty of candy and enjoyed the twist to our usual trick-or-treating.
In the photo below, we visited a local candy factory as our Halloween activity. My kids got a tour of the factory and a lesson about the history of candy.
They even learned how some of the most popular candies are made.
You could also plan your very own fun, worry-free Halloween at home.
Invite a few families for a candy swap where parents can bring their children and do a playdate-style Halloween celebration.
Hold a costume contest, pumpkin carving, or painting as a fun activity. Have parents prepare special Halloween-inspired snacks and treats or set up a makeshift haunted house in the living room for added excitement.
Be sure to print copies of our Free Halloween Coloring Pages as a fun activity for little ones attending your Halloween party.
Inspect Candy Before Eating
Most people may assume their trick-or-treat candy is safe to consume because it is rare to find harmful objects in candy.
In today’s world, you can never be too cautious. Look over your child’s treats for dangers like allergens, choking hazards, and tampered packaging.
Also, remind your kids never to consume half-eaten or unwrapped candies.