How Kids Trick-or-Treat Around the World Slideshow

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Ever wondered how this tradition looks in other countries? Check out these eight variations
Trick-or-Treating

Photo Modified: Flickr / Lufphilia / CC BY 4.0

Here are eight ways in which kids trick-or-treat around the world.

How Kids Trick-or-Treat Around the World

How Kids Trick-or-Treat Around the World

Photo Modified: Flickr / Lufphilia / CC BY 4.0

Trick-or-treating is an old tradition that has evolved differently in many areas of the world. We’ve rounded up eight ways kids participate in this type of custom. Some of them may surprise you.

Ethiopia

Ethiopia

Photo Modified: Flickr / Edsel Little / CC BY-SA 4.0

An Ethiopian festival called Buhe is celebrated on August 19, which is during the country’s rainy season. Groups of children go from house to house singing songs, like “Hoya Hoye,” and jumping up and down until they receive bread (usually injera, the Ethiopian flatbread), fresh bread dough, or money. Families also gather around small bonfires at their homes to celebrate.

Finland

Finland

Photo Modified: Flickr / Rob Hurson / CC BY-SA 4.0

On the Sunday before Easter, Palm Sunday, kids in Finland dress up as Easter witches and go from door to door bearing twigs decorated with crêpe paper and feathers. They offer the crafts as blessings to keep away evil spirits from the home and receive treats from their neighbors in return.

Northern Germany and Parts of Denmark

Northern Germany and Parts of Denmark

Photo Modified: Flickr / Polybert49 / CC BY-SA 4.0

Rummelpott is a New Year’s Eve tradition in the north of Germany and parts of Denmark where people go door-to-door and sing for treats. It’s for both adults and children, but children receive candy and adults often receive alcohol.

Germany

Germany

Photo Modified: Flickr / Lufphilia / CC BY 4.0

After darkness falls on St. Martin’s Day, a German holiday celebrated on November 11, kids carry lanterns from door to door and sing songs in return for money, candy, and other goodies.  

Norway

Norway

Photo Modified: Flickr / Birgit Fostervold / CC BY-SA 4.0

Trick-or-treating reportedly began in Norway in the 1990s and later picked up steam. Kids go from door to door saying, “knask eller knep” or “digg eller deng” — both mean "trick or treat" — when a neighbor opens the door in order to receive candy.   

Parts of Central Asia

Parts of Central Asia

Photo Modified: Flickr / Nicolas Lannuzel / CC BY-SA 4.0

In Turkmenistan and other parts of Central Asia, kids keep the tradition of Ramadan caroling alive, going from door to door to sing for their neighbors at any time during the ninth month of the Islamic lunar calendar. Kids usually ask for money or candy in exchange for their song.

Portugal

Portugal

Photo Modified: Flickr / Nelson L. / CC BY 4.0

All Saints’ Day is celebrated in Portugal and other countries with Catholic histories as a day for families to honor dead saints and loved ones. In some parts of Portugal, kids go door to door and procure treats by asking for “pão-por-Deus," “bread for God’s sake.”

Sweden

Sweden

Photo Modified: Flickr / Daniel Sjöström / CC BY-SA 4.0

On Easter in Sweden, youngsters observe traditions similar to those of Halloween in the U.S. Kids paint their faces and dress up as witches, often carrying brooms and petitioning neighbors for treats.