Although Halloween is primarily celebrated in the USA, here in South Africa, the Halloween spirit (excuse the pun) is catching on.

So with the scary holiday grabbing at our heels, threatening to infiltrate our country, Columinate decided that some further investigation was needed. This morning we, at a rather frighteningly fast pace, launched a new survey to get to know a little about the way South Africans celebrate Halloween and their thoughts on all things spine-chillingly scary. 645 victims (respondents) took part in the 2 minute survey and data was collected in a mere 2 hours.

The majority of South African internet users did not think much of Halloween and felt it was just another day. However, some do look forward to it, with 20% saying they were excited about Halloween and would be celebrating it. Then of course there were the few (4%) were totally freaked by all of it!

When it comes to superstitious beliefs, the majority is not superstitious, but 37% said that they were slightly superstitious and 4% saying they were throw-salt-over-your-shoulder superstitious.

It seems that even though South Africans are not superstitious they do believe in the traditionally scary creatures from the underworld. More than half believe in ghosts, half believe in witches and a third believes in the Tokolosh. Respondents are more skeptical about the existence of scary creatures that we see extensively in popular culture today, with only 11% believing that zombies exist and 9% believing that vampires exist.

What South Africans are most afraid of are the more ‘real’ issues; respondents cited unemployment (24%), debt (22%), Julius Malema (13%) and Hurricane Sandy (8%) as scarier than things like ghosts and ghouls.

So if you are planning your Halloween costume, perhaps opt for a more non-traditional scary character, such as Julius Malema.

P.S. When asked


whether they prefer ‘trick or treat’, 80% chose ‘treat’. It seems like the holiday of Halloween is also all about the chocolates and sweets.