When is World Book Day 2019? Costume ideas and how to use book tokens

We explain it is, what the event is and what are some costume ideas for the international event.

What is World Book Day?

World Book Day is a registered charity that is support by National Book Tokens and brings together UK and Ireland’s publishing industries.

It is designated by UNESCO as a worldwide celebration of books and reading and is observed in more than 100 countries.

In the UK and Ireland, World Book Day 2019 is celebrated on Thursday, March 7.

In other countries it is marked on April 23, the day of William Shakespeare's birth.

What happens on World Book Day?

The aim of World Book Day is to celebrate books and reading and is marked in a total of 100 countries around the world.

Both primary schools and secondary schools up and down the country take part as a way of encouraging children to see reading as a hobby.

Many schools run special activities to show how reading books can be fun and to allow kids to discover new authors.

One of the most well-known activities on World Book Day is when children are invited to go to school dressed as their favourite literary character.

From Harry Potter to Willy Wonka and Mary Poppins, some parents outdo themselves in the brilliant costumes they make for their little ones.

Also World Book Day provides children with the opportunity to buy a book of their own.

Each school pupil from five to 18 is given a £1 token they can redeem against a whole range of paperbacks or audio books.

What are the best and easiest character costumes to make?

Kids might love it, but for parents, getting the right costume ready for World Book Day can be a pain.

With the pressure on, some parents spend a whole lot of time and money transforming their little ones into their favourite book characters.

And some of the best often go viral on social media, including the little boy who dressed as Hagrid from Harry Potter and another youngster dressing as Roald Dahl's BFG.

But for mums and dads who maybe don't have the time (or patience), there are a host of easy costume ideas.

For example, you could dress your youngster in a duffel coat, hat and wellington boots and transform them into Paddington Bear.

A Where's Wally costume only requires a stripy jumper, bobble hat and a pair of fake glasses.

While an easy costume for girls is Pippy Longstocking as you will only need a pair of stripy socks, a dress, and then to plait the hair in pigtails.

Where can you spend your World Book Day tokens?

In partnership with schools, World Book Day organisers will be handing out over 15 million £1 book tokens – which is one for almost every child or young person under 18 in the UK or Ireland.

Those with book tokens can swap them in book shops for one of the ten new World Book Day books – which include a John Green title, an Avengers story and a Paddington tale.

The children's books will be free with a token, and the teen titles will only cost £1.50 when used with one.

Alternatively, they can be used to get £1 off any full price book instead.

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