7 Tips for Taking Your Kids To The Movies On The Cheap

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Kid watching movie in an empty cinema

As winter quickly approaches, it’s not feasible for the kids to play outside every day as the temperatures are rapidly dropping. That means it’s time to find some indoor activities to do that will keep the kids entertained during the cold winter months. An excellent way for the whole family to be entertained is a trip to the movies. 

You walk into a movie theater and are hit with the warmth from the popcorn machines and the smell of freshly popped popcorn. But then you start adding up the cost of the tickets, bucket of popcorn, candies, and different treats that the kids wanted. You suddenly find yourself wishing that you just stayed home and put something on Netflix. 

Taking a family to the movies is no longer a cheap endeavor. At Twin Cities Kids Club, we are here to give you some tips to make a trip to the movies with the kids more affordable.

Join Twin Cities Kids Club for more events and discounts! 

Cute little kids smiling joyfully watching a movie at the cinema entertainment childhood kids comedy cartoons family recreation leisure activity holidays positivity emotions concept

1. Go During the Afternoon and Discount Days

One way to save money is to take the kids to an afternoon show. Matinee prices are much more affordable than evening shows. On a restless afternoon, load the kids up and take them to the Hopkins Cinema 6. The matinee prices are $2.50 for each child. Spending less on tickets leaves you more money to spend on a large bucket of popcorn to share! 

Go on a Tuesday! Many theaters in the local area have a $5 deal on tickets.

There are also a couple of local theaters that even offer movie tickets for $2 on Tuesdays!

2. Look into Deals on Websites 

All of the chain theaters offer discounts and have loyalty clubs. The Regal Entertainment Group has just started a program called Regal Unlimited. “With an annual Regal Unlimited movies subscription pass, you can watch as many movies as you want, as many times as you want.” Plus, other benefits that are starting at $18 a month. 

AMC Theater has a program called A-List that is another option, “AMC stubs A-List includes up to 3 movies every week with FREE online reservations and FREE format upgrades to Dolby Cinema, IMAX, and more.” 

If your family are avid moviegoers, one of these options could be an excellent choice for you. Make sure you are checking all your local theater’s promotions- shop around to make sure you are getting the best deal for your family.

Another place to check for movie tickets deals would be on Groupon for discounted rates on tickets. Fandango is also a website that often runs deals for different theaters movie tickets! Both these sites are worth checking before you head out on your next trip to the movies! 

Happy family in the movie

3. Go to Independent Theaters

Sometimes independently owned theaters in the area will have much better deals on tickets. You may have to wait a little longer for the movies to hit the screen there. It can take up to 4 weeks for an independent theater to get the right to play a cinema after it’s released. 

The kids won’t care that they didn’t get to see the movie on opening night!

You can also take the kids to an independent movie theater that does cheap reruns. Kids love watching the same movie over and over again. 

Finding discounts and deals at local independent theaters can take a little more planning on your end, but by going to an independent theater, you are supporting your local area and saving money at the same time! 

4. Buy Tickets at Wholesale

Places like Costco, Sams Club, and BJs will buy blocks of movie tickets, from the larger theater chains like AMC, at a discounted rate, and then will sell them in packs of tickets. This option can still be cheaper than buying them at the box office. 

Happy kids watching movie in theater/theatre cinema

5. Eat Before the Movies

We all know that it is the concessions that gouge you when you’re taking a trip to the movie theater. The markup on sodas and candies are enough to drive any fugal momma insane. Fill your kids with a healthy lunch before loading them up in the car. 

You can always buy popcorn to share to have something during the movie. Isn’t that what we came here for anyway? 

6. Bring Your Snacks or Share

I know this one might be up for debate, but I would much rather pay $1.50 for a large box of candy at a local convenience store than $4 at the movie theater. Sneak in just a couple of special snacks for the kids; that way, you can whip them out when they start to get restless halfway through the movie. 

By sharing snacks at the movies, you can save a little bit of money too. Instead of buying a drink for each kid, grab one, and have them share. You can always run out and refill it real quick when it’s gone. 

A large popcorn can be shared if you ask for extra bags and divvy the popcorn out between the kids. Make sure you separate it, so they’re not fighting over the large popcorn bucket. 

Sharing snacks can cut some of the unnecessary costs. Frequently, popcorn ends up getting thrown away anyway because there was too much purchased and the kids don’t finish a whole bag of their popcorn.  

Hispanic boy excited about a movie

7. Buy in Bulk 

This tip will cost you more upfront but will pay off over time. If you are buying your tickets one and two at a time, you are going to pay full price for them; however, if you can afford to buy 25 or more tickets at a time, they are going to be discounted.

Purchasing in bulk is an investment that you can even split with a friend who likes to go to the movies!

If your kids end up loving the movies and all things theatre related, maybe they’ll like acting classes! Check out our tips here.

If discounts and events interest you join Twin Cities Kids Club for more! 

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