Our entire family went to see Iron Man 3 on Saturday night this weekend. I didn’t realize that the real animation would be at the ticket office before even entering the theatre. With the price being $15 for an adult ticket (and those 12 and over become an adult), we were out roughly $75 before we even grabbed a set for the movie. For some of you who work hard on your family budget, that may be a week’s worth of groceries in your pantry! I think it is fantastic that so many movie theaters have made upgrade to make the movie going experience better, and I can’t wait to see 4-D which I am sure will be coming soon. Maybe in those theaters, voices can sound off when we sit down in our chairs to laugh at us for paying $15 a head just to get into the movie. If you are bringing your family to the movies, here are four smart money moves tips to put a few dollars back in your pocket come show time.
- Order A Large Popcorn, Bring The Ziploc Bags – You’ll notice that the difference between a large popcorn and a small popcorn isn’t more than a dollar or so at the theatre. One great idea is to bring three or four medium size plastic Ziploc bags for your kids to dispense them each a bag of popcorn. Since you have one free refill, you can easily get up during the movie and get another batch of popcorn if all the kids are eating. For less than $10 bucks, you can get the whole family a snack for the movie if everyone enjoys popcorn.
- Stop At The Local Pharmacy Store– All of the large chains like Walgreens generally have specials where you can get three boxes of movie candy for just three dollars. You’ll typically pay $3 to $5 for a box of candy at the movies if you get it at the snack counter. While movie theaters say they strictly prohibit you bringing in your own candy, there are plenty of people who do it all the time. At a dollar a box, you can spend $5 to get a box of candy for each member for a family of five.
- Bring Bottled Water or Use The Cooler– Does anyone really need a Big Gulp at the movies? Most families hardly ever finish the sodas that they order at the movie theater. Small drinks generally start at $4.75 and usually cost only $.50 to get a larger size. $4.75 for roughly 16 oz. of soda when you factor taking out the ice. Totally not worth it at all. Either bring in a bottled water, tell your kids to get a drink from the water fountain, or split one humongous drink as a family.
- Look For Specials– On Tuesday nights, AMC offers $2 popcorn night and on Monday’s $2 candy night. If you take the time to look on the internet for the different movie chains and your local theaters, you just might find a deal that can save your family money.
I never thought I would see the day that taking my family to the movies could push $100. That should be the price for a really good meal for a family of five. These types of activities need to be planned for within the meals and entertainment in your family budget, or you just might find that you won’t have enough money to see Iron Man 4 . . . in 4D!
CFP®, AAMS®, AWMA®, CRPC®, CMFC®, CRPS®
Editor in Chief of Your Smart Money Moves
Co-CEO and Founder of oXYGen Financial, Inc – The Leaders in Gen X & Y Financial Advice and Services
Ted Jenkin is one of the foremost knowledgeable professionals in giving financial advice to the X and Y Generation.
Find us on Facebook here – CLICK CLICK