Halloween in New Zealand 2019

Do New Zealanders celebrate Halloween? Your questions answered.

Last updated:

Halloween is a celebration held on 31 October every year. It’s a day when anyone can don a costume and take on another persona judgement-free, walk through their neighbourhoods trick-or-treating, carve lanterns out of pumpkins and bob for candy apples.

Whilst this hugely popular holiday doesn’t have any actual roots in New Zealand, thanks to the mass media marketing of this annual celebration, many Kiwis have come to enjoy the frightful festivities associated with Halloween. From creepy stories and family-friendly horror movies to the Halloween candy and themed activities, slowly but surely Halloween is becoming more and more popular throughout New Zealand.

Family In Halloween Costumes And Pumpkins

Read on to understand the history of Halloween and all the dos and don’ts in New Zealand.


Top stores to buy Halloween costumes

    Do New Zealanders celebrate Halloween?

    Yes and no.

    Halloween is an annual holiday during which New Zealanders remain divided. Some hang spooky decorations, don creepy costumes and take advantage of the date to have some scare-themed fun with their families and friends, whilst others choose to ignore the celebrations altogether.

    Some New Zealanders choose not to take part in the holiday because they see it as an American tradition. By rejecting this American holiday, they are choosing to reject American culture and stay true to their Kiwi roots.

    As a result, when Halloween comes around, you’ll see a divide of homes. Some decorated elaborately in celebration and others, not at all. However, it should be noted the popularity of this holiday seems to grow every year New Zealand-wide.

    The history of Halloween

    Halloween is a contraction of “All Hallows Evening” and is a day that has been celebrated all over the world under a number of different names.

    There is a school of thought that links modern Halloween celebrations back to the Celtic festival Samhain, which is an ancient pagan ceremony. Samhain was held at the end of the harvest season and marked the descent into the darker half of the year. During this time, it was suggested that the divide between the world of the living and the world of the supernatural shifted, and that mystical creatures could move between the realms of the dead and the living more freely. This could be the spooky origin of our modern-day Halloween.

    There is also said to be some influence from Christian celebrations. In Christianity, 1 November is a holy day called All Hallows Day, making 31 October All Hallows Eve. In addition, 2 November is called All Souls Day. These days were a time to honour the dead and the saints. It is believed that during the 700s Christian beliefs merged somewhat with Celtic beliefs and All Hallows Eve merged with Samhain and began to more closely resemble the celebration we have today.

    Halloween Pumpkins

    Another celebration linked to Halloween is the Mexican festival of the Day of the Dead, which is celebrated on 2 November, the same day as All Souls Day in early Christianity. The Day of the Dead traditions come from pre-Colombian cultures, celebrated in the ninth month of the Aztec calendar. It is believed that this day dates back 2,500–3,000 years. During the Day of the Dead festival, many people will dress up, decorate their homes, walk the streets and remember friends and family members who have died. It is very possible that this ancient celebration has, over time, influenced and shaped Halloween as we know it today.

    When did New Zealanders start to celebrate Halloween?

    It is only over the past few decades that New Zealand has begun to embrace the American holiday of Halloween. This is mainly due to the massive popularity of the horror genre. Whether you like an edge-of-your-seat thriller, secretly adore the gore of a slasher or enjoy the fun family side of Halloween movies, TV shows and books, America and most of the rest of the world has ensured that we all have access to the Halloween-inspired media of our choice.

    Add that to the commercialisation and it’s easy to understand why so many countries that don’t usually celebrate this holiday have started to jump on board with the Halloween festivities.

    Trick-or-treating etiquette in New Zealand for Halloween

    If you’re planning to trick-or-treat in New Zealand or you want to hand out lollies and treats to trick-or-treaters this year, here are a few things you should consider:

    For trick-or-treaters:

    • Try and stick to areas that have other trick-or-treaters. If you see lots of other trick-or-treaters out on the street, it’s likely that you’re in a Halloween-friendly neighbourhood. You’ll have better luck here.
    • Choose houses with decorations. Since not all New Zealanders celebrate Halloween, choosing houses with decorations is a good indicator of which households are happy to accept trick-or-treaters.
    • Try not to disturb people during dinnertime. Many people find doorbell ringers of any kind very offensive during dinnertime. Bear this in mind before you head out.
    • Don’t trick-or-treat too late in the evening. Be mindful that Halloween often occurs on a weekday and many people need their sleep. Try to do your trick-or-treating earlier rather than later.
    • A costume is a must. If you want to trick-or-treat, you’ll need a costume. Otherwise, you’re just asking strangers for lollies!

    Chocolates In Pumpkins Vase

    • Inspect your lollies. Parents of young children, or you yourself, should inspect the haul carefully before consuming it. This can stop those with allergies from consuming something potentially unsafe.

    For accepting trick-or-treaters:

    • Choose individually wrapped lollies. Pre-wrapped lollies (such as Minties or Fruit Bursts) are a lot more hygienic when you have lots of little hands rifling through candy bowls.
    • Put up some decorations. If you’re willing to accept trick-or-treaters, maybe put up a decoration or two on your door so kids and parents know that they’re ok to knock at your place.
    • Be mindful of allergies. It’s always kind to stay away from nut-based or gluten-based sweets given the prevalence of allergies in western society. Kids often won’t read the labels before eating their candy.

    If you want to celebrate Halloween this year, here’s all the inspiration and costume ideas you need:

    Top stores to buy Halloween costumes

    Take the fuss out of Halloween and buy a costume from one of our favourite fashion stores carrying contemporary costumes:


    Shopping for Halloween costumes online? Do it for less with one of these coupons:

    Princess Polly Princess Polly

    Princess Polly

    20% off sitewide

    Last verified

    Coupon code ends

    Swish Fashion Swish Fashion

    Swish Fashion

    Receive a $10 OFF voucher

    Last verified

    Coupon code ends

    Showpo Showpo

    Showpo

    40 - 60% off sale

    Last verified

    Get deal
    Zaful Zaful

    Zaful

    Up to 70% off + free gifts

    Last verified

    Get deal

    Deal ends

    Zaful Zaful

    Zaful

    Up to 90% off + extra 10% off Christmas sale

    Last verified

    Coupon code ends

    Sunnylife Sunnylife

    Sunnylife

    20% off sitewide

    Last verified

    Coupon code ends

    Skechers Skechers

    Skechers

    Up to 50% off sale

    Last verified

    Get deal
    Quay Australia Quay Australia
    Exclusive

    Quay Australia

    10% off orders over $75

    Last verified

    Coupon code ends

    Simply Wholesale Simply Wholesale
    Exclusive

    Simply Wholesale

    15% off all products

    Last verified

    Coupon code ends

    THE ICONIC THE ICONIC

    THE ICONIC

    25% off party and gift

    Last verified

    Get deal

    Deal ends

    Curvy Curvy

    Curvy

    30% off Triumph + free wash bag

    Last verified

    Get deal

    Deal ends

    Forever New Forever New
    SALE

    Forever New

    Up to 50% off 400 new sale styles

    Last verified

    Get deal
    Swarovski Swarovski

    Swarovski

    Free Swarovski Crystal Star Ornament valued at $69

    Last verified

    Get deal

    Deal ends

    Boohoo Boohoo

    Boohoo

    50% off absolutely everything

    Last verified

    Get deal

    Deal ends

    Charles & Keith Charles & Keith
    Limited time!

    Charles & Keith

    FREE standard delivery on all orders

    Last verified

    Get deal

    Deal ends

    Kathmandu Kathmandu

    Kathmandu

    Extra 20% off sunglasses

    Last verified

    Get deal

    Deal ends

    Kathmandu Kathmandu

    Kathmandu

    Up to 50% off adult shirts, shorts, & pants

    Last verified

    Get deal

    Deal ends

    Kathmandu Kathmandu

    Kathmandu

    20% off driMOTION gear

    Last verified

    Get deal

    Deal ends

    Princess Polly Princess Polly

    Princess Polly

    $5000 Christmas giveaway

    Last verified

    Get deal

    Deal ends

    Supre Supre

    Supre

    Tops for $10

    Last verified

    Get deal

    Deal ends

    Quay Australia Quay Australia

    Quay Australia

    $25 for sunnies

    Last verified

    Get deal

    Deal ends

    Glassons Glassons

    Glassons

    Up to 60% off sale

    Last verified

    Get deal
    THE ICONIC THE ICONIC

    THE ICONIC

    Up to 70% off sale

    Last verified

    Get deal
    Dissh Dissh
    Limited time!

    Dissh

    Further 20% off sale

    Last verified

    Coupon code ends

    Be Me Be Me

    Be Me

    $40 site-wide or $33 each for 3 styles

    Last verified

    Get deal

    Deal ends

    ECHT ECHT

    ECHT

    Up to 50% off: Outlet Sale

    Last verified

    Get deal
    Zaful Zaful

    Zaful

    Save 20% off site-wide

    Last verified

    Coupon code ends

    ChicMe ChicMe

    ChicMe

    Up to 88% + extra 15% off flash sale

    Last verified

    Coupon code ends

    ChicMe ChicMe

    ChicMe

    Up to 80% off sitewide

    Last verified

    Get deal
    Newchic Newchic

    Newchic

    Up to 75% off: 5th Anniversary Sale

    Last verified

    Get deal
    Crossroads Crossroads

    Crossroads

    30-50% off selected styles

    Last verified

    Get deal
    ChicMe ChicMe

    ChicMe

    Extra 15% off site-wide

    Last verified

    Get deal
    eBay eBay

    eBay

    Up to 50% off selected items

    Last verified

    Get deal
    Rivers Rivers

    Rivers

    Up to 70% off sale

    Last verified

    Get deal
    BestDeals BestDeals

    BestDeals

    Up to 25% off selected items

    Last verified

    Get deal
    BestDeals BestDeals

    BestDeals

    Free shipping on orders

    Last verified

    Get deal
    Rivers Rivers

    Rivers

    Up to 50% off storewide

    Last verified

    Get deal
    ChicMe ChicMe

    ChicMe

    72% off site-wide + 20% off when you buy 4 items

    Last verified

    Get deal
    Lorna Jane Lorna Jane

    Lorna Jane

    Up to 60% off sale

    Last verified

    Get deal
    MINKPINK MINKPINK

    MINKPINK

    15% off your first order

    Last verified

    Popular Womens Clothing & Accessories coupon codes

    Last checked Code description Code
    9 Dec 2019 20% off sitewide MIK****
    9 Dec 2019 Receive a $10 OFF voucher XMA****
    6 Dec 2019 Up to 90% off + extra 10% off Christmas sale MER****
    5 Dec 2019 20% off sitewide LET****
    11 Jul 2019 10% off orders over $75 FIN****

    Was this content helpful to you? No  Yes
    Go to site