How to Save Money on Museum Admissions
Some museums are free. Some are very expensive. Look with new eyes on how to save money when you visit.
Museums are good for your mental health, expanding your knowledge, and are excellent for friend and family outings. But sometimes tickets are very expensive--it varies from city to city and museum to museum. For example, the National Museum of African American History & Culture, a very large museum, is free. On the other hand, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, another very large museum, costs $30 for adults and $22 for seniors. Check out the ways you can save money on museum admission tickets.
Free or Discount Days or Evening
Many museums have days or evenings when admission is free or discounted. For some museums it might be weekly, for others it might be monthly. Check out the museum website and see if the museum you're going to has this available.
AAA has discounts, often up to 30-40% off, for zoos, attractions, museums and more. If you have AAA, go to their website and see which museums you can get discounted tickets for.
Nowadays, many museums require you to purchase your ticket ahead of time online. And some museums give you a discount if you purchase tickets in advance. Don't wait to the last minute in case it'll save you money.
Use Your Library Card
There are growing collaborations between libraries and local museums. In some cities, once you have a library card, you can visit museums for free or at a discounted rate. Sometimes you can use your library card directly or sometimes you have to use your library card to apply for a museum pass. You can find this in big cities like Seattle and Los Angeles, as well as smaller library systems like Buncombe County (Asheville), North Carolina.
Senior or Military Discounts
Many museums offer discounts to seniors and military as well as other organizations. Check the museum's website when to see which discounts might apply to you.
City Passes (Go City)
Cities across the United States as well as around the world have city passes that provide admission to museums and other attractions for a certain number of days. For example, London Pass gives you admission to over 80 attractions in increments of 1-10 days. Some of these passes also include transportation on buses, trains, subways, and more. If you're going to a big city, do a bit of math and see if one of these passes will save you money. Many people say that not only do they save money but they are extremely convenient to use, sometimes allowing you to by-pass lines to get into museums.
Many museums have annual passes or memberships. Often the cost is less than two visits to the museum, and includes discounts to the museum shop or museum cafe. If you plan to visit a museum more than once during a year, check into getting a yearly museum pass.
Yes, museums can be expensive and it'll be worth it to see if you can save a few dollars on admission--so that you have money to spend in the museum gift shop!
How have you saved money on museum admissions?