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8 Ways to Save Money on Entertainment

8 Ways to Save Money on Entertainment

Get ready to get cozy this fall! While cooler weather often means more time indoors, it's also a great time for entertainment and outings. Fall is the perfect season for movies, pumpkin picking, concerts, and more. 

Whether you want to curl up on the couch or explore in the fresh air, we've got you covered. Read on to learn how you can save money on good times without sacrificing the fun!

1. Bundle up!

We don't just mean with blankets. With so many streaming platforms and ways to watch the latest movies and television, there are numerous great bundles to choose from. Start by checking with your phone service provider to see if they have any deals. For example, Verizon bundles with Disney +, Sprint bundles with Hulu, Metro partners with Prime Video, T-Mobile bundles with Netflix, and AT&T partners with HBO. 

While some deals may be limited to new customers, it doesn't hurt to ask. Just be aware that there may be some limitations to these bundles, like limited accounts or commercials. 

2. Expand your library ... literally

Did you know that your library is probably available right at your fingertips? If you've got a library card, download the Libby app by Overdrive. There, you'll have access to your local library's catalog of ebooks and audiobooks that you can check out! If you see something that's unavailable, get on the waitlist, and it will show up on your personal shelf when it's your turn.

The best part is that you can avoid late fees because you'll never have to return a book again. When your check-out period expires, the books will automatically "return" to the library. You also have the option to renew your books, just in case you don't finish in the allotted time. Project Gutenberg and Manybooks are other free sources for reading ebooks that don't require a library card. 

3. Save by supporting local

If you prefer to build your own library of physical books, fantastic! You can simultaneously support local bookstores and get discounted books. Most used booksellers offer books at deeply discounted rates compared to chain bookstores, because they rely on donations. Shop around to see what your area offers, and don't be afraid to check out shelves with well-loved books. 

To further support your local bookstores, be sure to donate books you no longer want. Some book stores may even offer store credit — though be sure to ask if this is the case!

4. See a matinee movie

Movies aren't just for after dark. Most theaters offer special pricing for early morning and afternoon showings because they're less popular for movie-goers. These reduced ticket prices can range from a dollar or two in savings, to up to 50% off. Find the best matinee prices by shopping around your local movie theaters. You might just get the whole theater to yourself! 

5. Check out the local entertainment scene

Love live music and festivals? See if your town or others nearby have an event calendar or social media page. They might also be in local newspapers, magazines, or your local news website. Larger cities usually publish event calendars on their tourism or chamber of commerce sites. 

Many of these events are free or only charge nominal entrance fees, like jazz concerts in the park, art shows, and food festivals. The key is, if you're looking for adventure, don't forget to look in your own backyard! When in doubt, a quick online search of "free events near me" is a fast way to find something fun. 

6. Look for locals!

If you're not afraid to put yourself out there, finding local group activities is a great way to try new things and make new friends. Coffee shops, visitor centers, and other community hubs often have bulletin boards where groups advertise public events and activities. You might discover anything from book clubs to frisbee in the park, to cooking classes. You can also search for events through social media. You never know what fun activities are going on in your area until you look! 

7. Shop the bargain bins

You'd be surprised at what diamonds in the rough you can find! In your favorite stores, look for bins of discounted books, movies, music, games ... Many of these price-slashed bins hold precious treasure. Look for on-sale classics, movies with nostalgia-factor, or even "double features." Grab a few snacks on your way out and you can have a movie night for $10 or less!

8. Host a movie night

Going to the movie theatre is fun, but what if they're not playing your favorite? Host a movie night! You get to choose the flick, the friends, and the snacks. Don't know what to watch? No problem! Make it a regular event and have your friends suggest a movie or theme. Shop your closets for outfits that match the theme and have a blast! Just think about the possibilities: '90s night, horror flicks, dystopian worlds ... the universe is your oyster.

There are countless ways of entertaining yourself and your family without breaking the bank. Try these tips to save your Friday-night-out dollars without the FOMO.