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Mall Scavenger Hunt Ideas - Make it FUN!

Updated on October 6, 2018
Mall Scavenger Hunt Ideas - Host one today
Mall Scavenger Hunt Ideas - Host one today | Source

Scavenger hunts can be amazingly fun for both kids and adults if they are put together the right way and are held in the right place. One of the best kids scavenger hunt places for is at the mall, since that is a typical hangout place for them anyway, which means they will know the layout of the area. In this article, we'll look at some fun mall scavenger hunt ideas.

Malls make for great arenas for scavenger hunts because it is a contained area, especially good for the younger kids, and the places from which kids can get items is vast. Here are some great ideas, when putting together, for your first (or next) mall scavenger hunt.

Every scavenger hunt should start out with a checklist of items that have to be collected, as well as an official start and end time. The time should correlate to how many items are on the list and the difficulty level of obtaining those items. Generally, a two hour window is ample enough time to complete a mall scavenger hunt. Of course the creator of the scavenger hunt will have to have a good idea of the layout of the mall, the stores and restaurants in it and a good idea of how large the mall is in order to approximate a start and end time.

What to Put on your Scavenger Hunt List

Restaurants are a wealth of scavenger hunt worthy items for kids to retrieve. On your hunt list, require the hunter to get a certain number of take out menus from each of the restaurants, or to make it harder, specify which restaurants they need to retrieve menus from. You can also require teammates to get napkins with the restaurants names on them, straws or food samples from the restaurant.

Chinese restaurants are infamous for giving out samples as well as fortune cookies so they are a good source for items. You can also give extra credit if the fortune includes certain words (you choose them) on the fortune. It may however also be a great break place for lunch ...

Want some ideas, check this video out!

Here are some other ideas for restaurants:

  • · Collect condiment packets (ketchup, mustard, relish etc.
  • · Strand of toilet paper
  • · Autograph of one of the staff
  • · A coupon
  • · An old receipt (extra points if it is over or under a certain amount)
  • · A take out menu
  • · A picture taken with one of the staff (bonus points if it is a manager)
  • . Kiss a staff member on the forehead
  • . Dance with a restaurant manager

Now it is time to move on to other areas of the mall for your scavenger hunt for kids. Within the stores themselves there are many items that can be collected. Here are just some of the items you should put on your list.

  • · A few perfume and cologne samples either random or specific
  • · An intact hanger
  • · Each member must collect a certain number of job applications
  • · A copy of the store’s catalog or sales flyer
  • · A certain number of business cards
  • · Items such as a piece of gift paper, ribbon, piece of tape, loose button
  • · A number of price tags or clearance tags
  • One Man’s Trash …It probably isn’t a great idea to go trash picking per say, but there are items that your team can collect within the mall that others don’t need or may be willing to part with to help your game.
  • · A damaged or broken hanger
  • · An old/unneeded DVD case
  • · Shopping bag with a specific store’s name on it
  • · Clothing box with store’s name on it
  • · A receipt with shopper’s bonus points on it

You can also add a trivia section to your scavenger hunt for additional points with cute facts and figures on it such as:

  • · Number of restaurants within the mall or food court
  • · Year when the mall was erected
  • · Number of entrances and exits within the mall
  • · Number of women’s or men’s stores specifically
  • · Number of bathrooms available in the mall (bonus points if they list how many handicap stalls there are combined)
  • · Number of kiosks
  • · Number of trash cans throughout
  • · If there is a movie theatre within mall, how many shows are playing? How many theatres are there?
  • · Total number of stores within the mall

Pictures are also worth a thousand words and incorporating them into your scavenger hunt for kids will bring a creative twist on an old favorite game. Use the following for guidelines on additional things to add to your scavenger hunt.

  • · Picture of each member trying on a hat from a mall store
  • · Have all the guys/girls separately squeeze into a fitting room stall and take a picture
  • · An additional point for each team member that shakes hands with a stranger and a photo is taken
  • · Gather team members and have them copy a store front display and take a picture
  • · Photo of one person on a mall kid’s ride
  • · Photo of a team member on one knee proposing to a mall stranger
  • · Photo of all team members trying out a video game in a record store
  • · Picture of a team or all members with a mall security guard
  • · Ask a stranger for a penny and get a picture of the exchange

These are only a few ideas for a mall scavenger hunt. Feel free to use these or add some of your own. Remember, adding your own twists to the game play ensures that the game is original. If it is near a festive time, consider a themed hunt held at the mall ... dressing up can be very funny when everyone else at the mall doesn't know what is happening!

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© Copyright 2012. Brett.Tesol - Full terms available on Brett.Tesol's profile page (click the blue link for profile, failure to read the Copyright Contract could be expensive. The act of copying this work means that you accept the full terms of the contract, regardless of whether or not you have read it).


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    • MindaPD profile image

      Minda Powers-Douglas 

      5 years ago from Northwest Illinois

      This sounds like it could be a lot of fun. Probably not the best thing to do during the holidays LOL.

    • Snurre profile image


      7 years ago

      What fun! I love the ideas here! Can't wait to try them out.

      Thanks for SHARING!

    • moonlake profile image


      7 years ago from America

      I loved scavenger hunts when I was a kid. Our church always had one. We actually went out in the dark and knocked on doors and ask for items. No one worried about where we were they set a time for us to be back to the church. I heard them talking about a scavenger hunt on tv today by kids using their cell phones. Say they want a Robin all they have to do is take it's picture. They don't have to bring back a single item just picture of it. Enjoyed your hub good ideas. Voted up, pinned, tweeted and shared.

    • truthfornow profile image

      Marie Hurt 

      7 years ago from New Orleans, LA

      Great for teenagers who live at the mall. And, something fun to do without spending too much money.

    • Pinkchic18 profile image

      Sarah Carlsley 

      8 years ago from Minnesota

      Being at a mall is enough of a scavenger hunt for me ;) lol great ideas here

    • kikalina profile image


      8 years ago from Europe

      Great idea! Excellent hub!

    • alocsin profile image

      Aurelio Locsin 

      8 years ago from Orange County, CA

      What an interesting thing for kids to do while you're out shopping at the local mall. It also helps them break out of any shyness when interaction is a necessary part of the game. Voting this Up and Interesting. SHARED.

    • kashmir56 profile image

      Thomas Silvia 

      8 years ago from Massachusetts

      Hi Brett this is a awesome idea and a great adventure for all that join in on this scavenger hunt. Well done !

      Vote up and more !!! SHARING !

    • suzettenaples profile image

      Suzette Walker 

      8 years ago from Taos, NM

      This is a great idea! When I taught Spanish, I used to give the kids a list of items in Spanish that they could find around our school. I always notified the office and the other teachers the day before, so they were aware of what was happening. Students were not allowed to interrupt any classes in progress. This was so much fun and the kids loved it. And, they never forgot those words in Spanish. Interesting and innovative idea!


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