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Costume Craze vs Costumes by Shindigz
Halloween has become one of the most entertaining holidays of the year. Kids and adults both get to dress up in fun and frightening costumes, attend parties, enter contests, and share in festivities. Halloween costumes themselves have become far more elaborate than the old "bedsheet-over-the-head" ghost of yesteryear.
Indeed, in retail stores you can find yourself spending hundreds of dollars on just one costume. Halloween costumes themselves have become far more elaborate than the old "bedsheet-over-the-head" ghost of yesteryear. With the advent of the internet, however, you can save 50% or more off traditional retail prices. From the comfort of your own home, you can easily browse hundreds of costumes to find just the one you're looking for.
Costume Craze has a clean, easy site that is loaded with information but still effortless to use. And with thousands of customers to browse, they offer one of the largest costume selections in our review.
They start by prominently featuring their customer service hours at the top of the page. We found this very helpful; most sites have this information buried somewhere 2 or 3 levels down from the home page.
Down along the left side of the screen they list 20 costume categories, including cartoon characters, superheroes, and teen costumes. Some of these links send you to further subcategories; the traditional link, for example, sends you to a page where you can choose from over 40 more categories, including angels, Pirates, and Princesses. Once you reach a final category of costumes, you are presented with a thumbnail preview of each item. Clicking on a thumbnail will present you with a larger view of the costume, although in most cases the thumbnails themselves are large enough for you to easily see what the costume looks like.
Costume Craze also provides you with search options across the top of the screen; here you get to choose from Costumes on Sale, Adult, Teen, Child, Dog, and Shoes. Clicking on these links will let you browse through thousands of costumes at a time. However, we wish they had further provided themes within these categories; in order to see all the adult vampire costumes, for example, you have to manually look through the hundreds of thumbnails within the adult category.
Alternatively, Costume Craze provides a very useful search bar at the top of the home page. Entering information here (like "Vampire" or "Star Trek") quickly takes you to the thumbnail results of your search. When using the search bar, you are also presented with a unique ability to further refine your search with 5 options - Price range, Gender, licensing, Age, and Vendor. Some of these, including price and gender, are extremely helpful when viewing a large number of matches. It would be nice to see these options on all their costume lists!
When looking at pricing, we were pleased to see costs that compared favorably to most of the sites in our review. In fact, on some items Costume Craze had the lowest price of any of our reviewed sites.
Costume Craze provide same-day shipping on most items if the order is placed by 4pm cst. They also guarantee a flat $5.99 shipping fee for standard ground transportation for your order, no matter how many items you buy. That is a cost-savings option for those people ordering more than one costume or a number of accessories. And you can easily check the status of your order online.
The return policy offered by Costume Craze provides a worry-free return policy. This means that if you return the item in perfect condition with all pieces prior to 30 days from purchase for a full refund. If returned after 30 days the company charges a 15% restocking fee and anything left will be in the form of an in-store credit. Clearance items are considered final.
Costume Craze does almost everything right. They have a huge selection of costumes, low prices, same-day shipping, and helpful search options. Overall Costume Craze earns very high marks in our review.
Costumes by Shindigz allows you to browse their inventory in a number of ways. First, along the left side of the screen you'll find costume categories - Top 10 Costumes, Top 10 Accessories, Themed Costumes, Disney Costumes, and so on. Clicking on Themed costumes you are presented with nearly 40 different types - from Angels to Zombies, and even including 1950's greasers. Entering any of these theme types, you are presented with thumbnail views of related costumes and accessories - grouped together for your convenience.
If you'd rather search according to the costume-wearer, Costumes By Shindigz provides options along the top of the screen. You can search between 8 categories; Adult, Teen, Child, Infant/Toddler, Pets, Mother/Daughter, Couples and Families. Some of these selections let you further refine your search by gender of the costume wearer. Once selected, all related costumes and accessories are displayed in thumbnail for your review.
Finding the costume you want is fairly easy. We do wish their thumbnail previews were a little larger, however; they're a little too small for our liking. Most of the time we had to click on the thumbnail to see the larger costume, because we couldn't tell much from the thumbnail picture.
Costume prices were competitive among the sites we reviewed. However, the number of costumes provided was less than most other sites. While Costumes by Shindigz provided a good variety, we would love to see more depth to their selections.
In addition to costumes, Costumes by Shindigz also provides links to other Halloween-related items. Click on Party Essentials, for example, and you're presented with a selection of Activities, Favors, Table, Party Apparel, Special Effects, and Treats/Accessories to choose from. Or, choose the Party Decor selection and you can select Balloons, Banners, Decorating Accents, Outdoor Decorations, and Theme Decor. They even have a special Sale link.
If you're interested in throwing a party - not just a Halloween Party, but any kind of party - Costumes by Shindigz gives you a link where your can find tips on over 200 different kinds of parties - from Baseball parties to Winter Olympics parties, and everything in between. This by itself is an incredible resource of information.
Costumes by Shindigz does a good job answering questions, even before they're asked. Under Customer Service you find links to several categories of information, including sizing charts and shipping information. Under the FAQ category, you find answers to 18 commonly asked questions.
Checking the status of your order is easy with their online tracking system. Most orders are sent out within two days of order placement. Costumes by Shindigz also offers shipping deals on purchases over $50 on standard ground orders - a helpful money-saving feature.
In case you're not happy with your order, most items can be returned within 30 days of delivery, minus a 15% restocking fee.
Costumes by Shindigz gets good marks for delivering an enjoyable shopping experience to their customers. With good search options, competitive pricing, and great customer service section, they obviously place a high level of importance on their customers. We wish they could provide more depth in their costume selections and same-day-shipping.
No more driving from store to store, fighting the crowds, or settling for what's "left over" after all the good costumes have been taken. With the advent of the internet, you can save 50% or more off traditional retail prices. From the comfort of your own home, you can easily browse hundreds of costumes to find just the one you're looking for.
When shopping at different online Halloween costume stores, you want to consider a few factors. Some of these include:
TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best Halloween costume stores online today. We hope these reviews help you with your next halloween costume purchase!
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