The M-Network Vacation Guide – Are season passes for theme parks worth it?
Photo by: unforth
All of the members of the M-Network are writing about vacationing. Frugal tips, ideas, experiences, personal accounts…everything. This is my second article for the week. Check out the other M-Network blogs for more!
For the past two weekends, we’ve headed to our local theme park right after lunch to enjoy some family time riding the roller coasters and relaxing in the water park. Wait…before you jump all over me about spending so much money, we can go as many times as we want this summer and not pay any more than we already have. How you ask?
We purchased season passes for our whole family. We’ve bought season passes to our local theme park every year for quit a few years. Expensive? Maybe, but it really depends on how you look it. Are season passes for theme parks really worth it? I think so, but it really depends on your situation. Let me explain…
Season pass price verses base admission price
As many of you know, we have 6 children, and being able to afford amusement park admission with 6-kids even once is tough, but if you plan to go multiple times it almost isn’t feasible on our budget. General admission to our local park is $45.99 for adults, and $19.99 for children under 48″. This doesn’t include parking, which is an additional $10.00/per car. For us, given we drive two cars, that would be 309.92 for just one day!
A single visit is barely in our budget let alone paying admission prices multiple times during the summer, so we purchased season passes instead. If you are going to visit a park more than once a year, a season pass is the only way to go.
A season pass is $79.99 per person. So for the price of 2 visits, you can visit the park all summer long as often as you would like. If you are buying for a family of 4 or more, they get discounted even further. The price is reduced to $69.95 per pass.
Benefits of seasons passes include:
- Designated Season pass holder parking
- 10% discount for food, drinks and merchandise
- Early admission to park
- Early admission to the water park
- Bring a friend day that has significantly reduced prices for friends.
Advantages of having season passes
Here are just a few of the advantages to have season passes:
- Go however often we like, with no limitations
- Ability to get into the park an hour early
- We don’t feel compelled to stay the whole day
- If one of our kids gets invited to go with a friend, they use their season’s passes. This usually happens at least a few times each summer.
- Discounts on food and drinks
The Bottom Line
If you have a theme park close by to your home, and plan to visit the park at least twice, purchasing a season’s pass is a great value. The passes also provide a great value for the money with reduced costs for parking, a more flexible schedule and discounts on foods and drinks (although we bring our own).
Do you have purchase season passes? Is it a good value for you? Share your perspective, add a comment!