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Many teens enjoy dressing up with their friends for Halloween, but are they too old to go trick-or-treating? Parents and others surveyed by news outlets stated that it is okay to trick-or-treating until you are 18 years old, but only 20 percent surveyed agreed with this. Most parents and others agreed that 12 to 15 is the cutoff age for trick-or-treating while others insist it is a fun activity and you are never too old for it. When kids are young, they often enjoy the thrill of trick-or-treating; the fun is more about wearing a costume and saying trick-or-treat than it is about getting candy. However, kids eventually figure out how much candy they can get from trick-or-treating, and they may end up caring more about the candy than costumes and Halloween. If you are questioning whether your kids are too old to dress up and go trick-or-treating, here are some considerations that can help you make a decision.

How Old Are They?

Look at the other kids in the neighborhood who are trick-or-treating. Do they have friends the same age that are headed out? Do you have kids who are tall, and seem to tower over the other kids trick-or-treating? This is something you need to consider as you don’t want your child to scare all the homeowners that are passing out candy. If your child is six feet tall, and they dress up with a scary costume, they can easily scare some of the people in the neighborhood. You need to make sure you aren’t sending your kid out when they could be potentially injured by a concerned homeowner.

What Age Is Too Old To Trick-or-Treat?

Do They Need Supervision?

When a child is in preschool, it’s normal to see the parent trick-or-treating with their child. However, most kids will be able to go out with a group of friends by the time they are 10 to 12 years old. Sending your child out with a group of friends you trust should be fine; but, if you know this group of friends is prone to getting into trouble, it is a good idea to tell your child they are too old. Kids that head out to cause vandalism or scare younger kids shouldn’t be out trick-or-treating anymore. Listen to your child and their friends to gauge what they plan to do when they go trick-or-treating. If it sounds like they want to go toilet papering, egging, and doorbell ditching, don’t let them go out.

Do They Have a Desire To Go Out?

One of the easiest ways to figure out if your child is too old for trick-or-treating is by talking to them. Do they have a desire to go trick-or-treating? If your child has no interest in trick-or-treating, they are too old to go out. Perhaps they might enjoy dressing up and passing out candy to the younger trick-or-treaters? Another idea is to let your pre-teen or teen enjoy having a Halloween party at your home. This gives them a chance to still dress up and avoids sending them out in the neighborhood where they may end up being a little mischievous.

Garrett Tomlinson is a freelancer based in Chicago, Illinois. For those who are young enough to go trick-or-treating for certain, Garrett recommends these costumes from

Image credit goes to Gigglejuice.