How to Get a Job in the Halloween Industry


Though spooky and crazy, Halloween can also be lucrative. According to a 2009 National Public Radio story, the haunted house industry alone "will scare up close to half a billion dollars in ticket sales in October [2009]." If you're looking for a way to make a profit by doing creative work, a job in the Halloween industry might be for you. Whether through costume design, theatrical makeup, party planning or scaring the lights out of small children, you can find a way to boost your bank account with some ghoulish cash.

Things You'll Need

  • Resume or portfolio
  • Research and determine which sector of the Halloween market suits your talents. Clothing and fashion lovers can excel at a costume shop, while an electrical pro may do well setting up complex lighting exhibits. Consider how your most marketable talents can contribute to someone's Halloween celebration.

  • Choose whether freelancing or contractual employment works best for your schedule and lifestyle. Halloween is one holiday that requires night-time contract employees, so it makes a good fit for those looking for extra work. Retail and haunted house acting make good fits for contractors. Freelancing, on the other hand, takes a lot of time and requires special tax work, agreements and self-promotion. It provides a better option for those who have experience with business, or who have the capacity to devote time. These jobs include makeup application, custom costume construction, party planning and Halloween exhibit design.

  • Present yourself as fun, energetic and outgoing when applying for Halloween work. The last thing a Halloween merrymaker wants to encounter is a stolid person, so emphasize your sense of enthusiasm. Play up scheduling flexibility, since many jobs run late.

  • Compile a suitable resume or portfolio to show off your accomplishments. For Halloween jobs, exhibit every job that you've ever held. Focus on work experience that pertains to what you want; special effects and costume makeup shots, retail experience and stage gigs all work well to show how you can contribute to someone's Halloween celebration.

  • Apply at the right time of year. Contract retail Halloween companies accept applications through their websites year-round but may also host job fairs about two months ahead of time. For freelance work, start advertising on Craigslist or through other chosen methods about a month and a half in advance.

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