For an average family of four at the ballpark, you are going to need $200 or more to get by. It can get very expensive very quickly. Like every entertainment venue, they know how to squeeze every dollar out of you. Don’t worry though, you can still enjoy a nice day taking in a baseball game and stick to your budget. Here are some things that you need to focus on to cut that total expense down.
Save On Tickets
Tickets can vary greatly depending on where you sit, the day of the game and the team that is playing.
If you want the cheapest tickets, a day game during the middle of the week is usually the thing. Tickets are cheaper because it is harder to fill the park during a work week.
You can also save by choosing seats that are higher in the outfield. Yes, they are away from the action a bit but there is no saying that you have to stay there the entire game. You can get up and walk around the park and take in the other activities.
Lastly, if you really want to save, you can look into taking in a minor league game. If there is a triple A team in your area, these guys are just one step below the pros. You can score tickets super cheap and possibly take in some future stars or current stars on rehab assignments. Another big pus to minor league parks is that they are typically smaller and a bit more intimate. This lets you get closer to the action no matter where your seat is.
Save On Food & Drinks
Most ballparks will let you take water in with you. Soda and alcoholic beverages are generally a no no but water should not be a problem. Some will even let you get away with taking in juice boxes for the kiddos. We have managed to do it even though it is technically not on the list. If it is for a kid, it is easier to get in.
Considering that drinks like soda can cost as much as $10 and there are no refills, bringing in your own drinks is a huge way to save money. Soft sided, collapsible coolers are generally the method of choice for carrying the drinks but check with your park.
Some, but not all ballparks will also let you take food into the game. Check in advance before making your plans, every team has a different policy. If you can bring it in, you will need to use clear plastic bags, they want to make sure no contraband is getting in.
Save On Souvenirs
This is what can really cost you and wreck your budget. If you have a kid, they are probably going to need money for something and the prices are crazy at the park.
Satisfy their desire for a souvenir by buying them in advance. Shop for them on Amazon or score a t-shirt at your closest big box store. Wait until the last minute to surprise them with it, when you arrive at the game is best.
If you wait to the last minute, that new toy feeling has a better chance of making it through the entire game. This can keep you out of the pro shop entirely.
Another good idea is to choose tickets in an area away from the main souvenir shop. If your kids do not see it, they will not know it is there. Make sure that the route to your seats doe not take you by it. If it does, take a creative path to your assigned seat.
Know Your Park
You want to keep the kids entertained to cut down on spending. If they get bored, they start wanting stuff, trust me.
Many parks have kid areas that you can take them to for free games and activities. Others have mini museums and various other small attractions.
Every few innings, it is a good idea to get the kids up and moving to keep them happy. Plan out your day, do not wing it.
If you are unsure whether your child will be into the game, consider loading up an iPad with some movies or games. Just be sure to bring some headphones.
If you have kids, a trip to the ballpark is something that you simply must do, even if you do not like baseball. Without the proper precautions, it can be super expensive but if you are prepared, you will not need a loan to have a good time. Good luck and here’s hoping you sang a fly ball.