Halloween can be scary, but Halloween dating doesn’t have to be. In fact, Halloween in Vancouver has become THE most anticipated party season of the year.

But how to turn a costume into a compatible relationship partner? Here’s how:

Halloween Dating Do’s:

Treats alone won’t do the trick: yes handing out candied treats to your neighbors kids is a time honored and noble tradition; but if you are single don’t get stuck spending the entire night at home answering the door bell. Take advantage of the Halloween spirit, pull together a few friends, and hit the costumed party circuit. A costume change might be just the trick your single life needs.

Go big or stay home: get in costume! Unlike a normal party, showing up at a Halloween party without a costume is not a winning strategy. Chatting with ghouls, goblins and Draculas will feel strange if you are dressed in your standard work attire, or jeans and a t-shirt. Make a simple costume at home, or together with friends, or pick up an inexpensive costume at the local drug store. It’s the one time of year that you’ll feel LESS awkward WITH a costume than without.

Use your illusion: although approaching someone new at a bar or restaurant on an average weekend night may not be your thing; you’ll find doing so ‘in costume’ is a whole lot easier. Be bold: approach everyone you meet at the Halloween party. And fear not, if you do get ‘shot down’, no-one will recognize you anyway!

Halloween Dating Don’ts:

Be yourself: what makes Halloween so great is that being in costume allows people to break free from their comfort zones. Ditch your tried and true approach lines and try these Halloween approach line classics: “I love your costume, where did you get it?”, or “Tell me honestly, what do you think of my costume?”, or if you meet someone in a confusing costume (a frequent occurrence at most parties): “Great costume, what character are you supposed to be?”

Wear a costume that ‘locks you down’: fun costumes are a great conversation starter, but avoid overly gory face makeup and/or costumes that limit your ability to move and mingle. The Godzilla costume you’ve been preparing for weeks might be fun, but you don’t want members of the opposite sex fleeing in terror. Plus, overly heavy or thick costumes will quickly turn the dance floor into your own personal sauna!

Put all your Halloween eggs in one basket: once you’ve got a good costume and a spirit of adventure, don’t limit yourself to just one party. Halloween has become big business so there are typically different parties spread out over a number of days. Look at this as the last, best chance to party before the holiday season madness.

Be creepy: Halloween should be fun, not creepy. If you are interested in someone by all means impress them with your costume; but good old fashioned politeness and friendliness will likely be required to interest them in seeing you ‘sans costume’.