Everyone wants to take a trip to a amusementpark. Unfortunately, no one likes to pay the high price of admission plus other costs within the park. For a family of 4, a day at the amusement park can reach above $300 with two thirds of the cost being the ticket price.
With this kind of expense, it is no surprise that many travelers to areas that are not noted for their amusement parks will shun the local theme park during family vacations. The exceptions being Orlando, Florida, and a southern California trip to Disneyland. Regardless of where you encounter an amusement park, there are some ways to save a few vacation dollars at the park.
Most amusement parks charge for parking. The cost ranges from $10 per car and up. If you are traveling with with a small caravan of cars, leave some of the cars at the hotel and fill up the empty seats. While this savings is not tremendous, it can be a start toward bigger savings. You should also figure any fuel savings, too.
Some amusement parks restrict how much of this that you can bring in the gate. None of them restrict how much of it you can bring to the parking lot in your car. Because almost all amusement parks will let you leave the park and return without additional cost, you can go to the parking lot to have your meals. Some parks even furnish picnic tables and nice grassy areas to spread a blanket. Just bringing a cooler full of sandwiches and soft drinks can save a family of 4 over $25 per meal. If several drinks each are figured into the equation, that number could double.
Most souvenirs are not around a few months after the end of the vacation. It is fun to buy some to remember the trip, but pictures and videos can furnish the same effect for a lot less money. If you buy souvenirs, shop for value. Paper flowers on a stick made by park employees are rarely a memorable and lasting token of the trip. An article of clothing might be a better choice if is something that you will wear outside of the amusement park. It is really just better to leave the souvenirs on the rack.
Most games at amusement parks are set up to favor the profits of the park. Basketball rims are a non-standard size at unusual heights. Bottles are made to be difficult to knock over. The easy games win pay off in tickets that will require about 1,000 of them for a decent prize. You would be better off to dodge the games and buy your kids a nice toy when you get home. This has the added benefit of not having to haul it around for the duration of your vacation.
You can sometimes purchase tickets as part of a vacation package. Tickets purchased this way can cost half as much as the gate prices. Check with locals to see if the park is running any type of special ticket prices through some local businesses. Amusement parks will occasionally offer discount tickets at grocery stores or car dealerships to try and attract more local customers.
As a traveler, you can take advantage of these savings with a little checking around. In resort areas, area resorts will offer deeply discounted tickets as an enticement for people to come and preview their properties. This may require a two hours of your time, but you can sometimes get 4 tickets for about the price of 1 or 2. At times, these places will give free tickets plus additional reduced priced ones.
When you are able to combine several of these way to save, a family of 4 can make a trip to an amusement park an affordable part of their overall vacation plan. Instead costing $300 to $400 dollars for a day, it might reduce the cost to under $150. While this is still expensive, as part of a vacation, it will fit into many travel budgets.
By planning ahead and looking for local discounts, huge savings can be realized.
Look for ways to save money on the price of admission.
Steer clear of games that entice you to spend money to win useless toys.
Limit the number or avoid buying souvenirs.
Take your own food and drinks.
Car pool to save on parking.