Movies on a budget

Lights, Camera, Action!

by Rekaya Gibson

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If you've gone to the movies lately, you've probably noticed that it's getting fairly expensive, especially for a family of four. Use these money-saving tips and solutions the next time you go to the show. It will relieve your pocketbook somewhat.

  • It is okay to go to a matinee. Don't feel ashamed that you're saving money. If your date complains, you may not want to marry him or her. This is a serious "red flag."

  • When you order refreshments for your kids, get the "Kiddy Pak" for yourself. It's cheaper. You get a drink, popcorn and candy. Sure, the portions are smaller, but it serves the purpose. Plus, you probably don't need the extra calories.

  • Credit card companies and entertainment books have movie coupons. You can purchase discounted tickets directly from major theater companies ahead of time. The tickets can be used after matinee hours. There's usually a limit on the number of tickets you can buy. Whatever you do, don't use the credit card.

  • Some communities still have drive-in theaters, which tend to be cheaper than standard cinemas. Of course, these movies start at dusk. At some drive-ins, children are admitted for free. The best part about drive-ins is that they allow you to bring your own snacks. Think about the savings on food and drinks alone! Don't fret; they still sell the regular movie theater food at comparable prices. In some instances, you might find the prices and selection a little more appealing.

  • Local grocery stores still rent movies. They have a tendency to be less expensive than video stores. A few supermarkets give customers a credit for returning rentals the next day. Again, this saves your family cash.

  • Eat a meal before going to the movie theater. This will curb your appetite to munch during the best parts. In addition, there'll be no need to buy junk food. If you're still hungry, chew some gum, but please keep the noise down!

  • Everyone in your household can deposit their spare change in a jar. At the end of the month, splurge on a motion picture. If you don't have enough for everyone to go, wait until you do. If it's a popular film, it will still be playing.

If money becomes a major factor, stay home. However, don't feel helpless; there is a solution. You can check movies out of the local library instead of renting them either online or at a store. You may or may not get the latest movies, but you can find some pretty good ones in VHS and/or DVD. As a matter of fact, you might discover a few that you've been meaning to watch. This will save you some money, and that's what's important.

There are no signs that theater prices are going to decrease. Use these movie savings and solutions to manage the rising costs. Hopefully, companies will notice the change in your spending behavior and will provide consumers with alternatives.

Take the Next Step

  • Check with your favorite theater to see when their matinees run.
  • Either eat before you go or if you must have refreshments, order the "kiddy-pak"
  • Simply sit back, relax on your own comfortable lazy-boy & watch a home movie!

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