So, you’re ready to visit the Theme Park? You’re ready to hop on those coasters and scream your head off, but you don’t want to break the bank. How do you have fun while saving? Here are some easy tips to save on your next trip to the park.

1. Don’t go wild with games

Do you really need that big plush bear? It might be tempting to win it, but don’t go wild trying to get it. It’s fine to play a $3 game a few times, but don’t play more than three times at most. The prizes the parks have are insanely cheap, so you’re really wasting your $20. Why spend $20 on a $2 prize?

2. Water, not pop

Pop is actually really bad for you on a hot summer day. You’ll get even more dehydrated, thus you’ll need to buy more and more. Instead of wasting $4 on a pop each time, just find a water fountain or go to a food stand and ask for a cup of water. You’ll only be charged for water if you buy it bottled, so don’t make the mistake of doing so. Parks will always provide water no matter what. The last thing they want is someone passed out on the midway. If you’re at Holiday World though, you don’t have to worry about this since it’s unlimited soft drinks all day, every day.

3. Eat outside the park

If you’ve driven to the park, just leave to eat. Most meals in the park cost $9 and up, which is crazy when you can get a meal at Mc Donald’s for less than $6. Parks will usually allow you to leave and come back at least once with your parking pass. If you don’t want to leave the property, just pack a sack lunch. Sometimes a peanut butter & jelly sandwich is better than a greasy burger.

4. Skip that awesome T-Shirt

Woah! That shirt is awesome! But will you really wear it that often? I find myself looking through theme park gift shops finding all kinds of cool things. However, I don’t like coughing up the cash. I’m not saying you shouldn’t buy¬†souvenirs. Just don’t buy everything you see. Remember: you’re basically paying for the name of the park on the item. Most of the time, the item costs nothing if you went to Walmart.

5. Don’t be afraid to ask for deals

If you’re looking to get some great bargins throughout the day, make sure you drop by Guest Relations first thing at the park. They should be happy to answer your questions about current deals inside the park. Last year when I was at Valleyfair, they had an entire Chicken Strips basket (I believe that’s what is was) for only $5. That’s certainly a huge discount compared with the normal $9 you’d pay. Don’t be afraid to ask. The parks wants you to spend more money. They need it, plus they have to get rid of their inventory somehow.

I hope these little tips help you when visiting a park the next time.

Do you have any ways personally to save? Share your Park Thoughts with us!