How To Save Money At The Movie Theatre
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How To Save Money At The Movie Theatre

A frugal lifestyle is important given the economic downturns affecting many economies today worldwide. It is possible to be social while being thrifty. Keep the budget in check and still be able to go to the movie theatre for a fun night out. Take the time to research the pricing at each theatre, share costs with companions, and evaluate how combo options can offer additional savings.

A frugal lifestyle is important given the economic downturns affecting many economies today worldwide. It is possible to be social while being thrifty. Keep the budget in check and still be able to go to the movie theatre for a fun night out.


If there is more than one local movie theatre, take the time to research the pricing at each one. Chances are that if the theatres are individually owned by different companies, they will have rival pricing to try to increase customer traffic. Compare the prices between theatres; movie tickets may be cheaper at one location than the other.

Also, compare pricing within a particular theatre. For instance, one ticket for a matinee may be less expensive than one ticket to a movie in the evening.

The research can be accomplished by perusing the websites for the theatres. Most websites state movie prices and will list a phone number for further questions. Inquiring about price differences is worth it to save a few dollars.

Share Costs

If one is attending the movie theatre with a companion, try sharing the expenses. Divide the total amount of the two tickets plus any concession items purchased. Another method is for one person to purchase the tickets while the other person pays for the concession stand food.

Another alternative is to take turns paying for the outing. This method works best if the pair goes regularly to movies together and tends to spend the same amount of money each time.

Concession stand items, such as candy and soda, can be split between the pair for extra savings. For example, popcorn may be cheaper if one medium tub is purchased to be shared between the pair rather than buying two separate small popcorns.

Combo Options

Movie theatres may offer concession items such as soda and popcorn at cheaper prices if purchased at the same time as the movie ticket. Ways to make a group purchase of this nature are through the ticket kiosk at the movie theatre, via the website, or by using a mobile phone app such as the Cineplex Mobile App.

Bringing one’s own food to the theatre is generally frowned upon by staff and is considered in poor taste. Instead, avoid paying for food altogether by eating a snack at home prior to the movie. Home-cooked food is likely a cheaper option than the food selection offered by many theatres. If unwilling to forego a snack and drink as part of the movie-watching routine, consider consuming a smaller sized snack and beverage to save money.


Peruse the websites of movie theatres prior to the outing. The theatre website may offer promotional codes that can be used toward the ticket and food items. Check to see if the items need to be purchased through the webpage or mobile app in order to use the current promo code. Consider the online purchase if you are guaranteed a reduced price for the event.

Gift Cards

Try asking family and friends for movie passes or theatre gift cards during gift-giving occasions. The gift-givers will appreciate that the present will be put to good use and save the recipient money in the future. Christmas and birthdays are excellent occasions for giving movie passes or gift cards.


Listen to the local radio station or local news programs. Many radio and television shows offer contests for local residents. Contests to win free movie passes are a popular category. Theatre websites may also offer their own contests.

If entering the contests are free, try entering a few and see what happens. You may just win your next set of movie passes. A free night out is a great deal!

Saving money on a night out at the movie theatre is possible, with a little planning and a budget. Have fun and don’t feel guilty about spending money the next time that the plans include going to the movie theatre.

Photo Source:

stock.xchng Peter Szustka

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Comments (10)

Lots of great suggestions! There are also usually 2 for 1 nights early in the week, kids seat free in matinees during the week for parents to get a break, and even free movies to look for at certain theaters. Always keep an eye on the online listings for all local theaters, and then throw them all out and go to the drive-in! Great post, many good suggestions!

Very interesting and enjoyable read. Thanks

Hummm . . . so much effort for so little reward. The "theater" experience has been all but ruined. I'd rather stay home and rent a movie!

Good tips! Voted up!

Great ideas, thanks!

Good post, we often go to movies on day/night where it is half price here in oz.

Good advice. Our local theater has half price tickets on Tuesdays and we often take our own snacks to save money.

hi Peter same here why pay full price when you can go half price and yes bring your own snacks if you like.

Good tips, with 4 kids we frequent the $1.50 movie...voted

Christy, excellent options, this used to be a cheap date, now it is just another big expense! Voted!