We’re currently planning a trip to the Big Apple! We’re headed there for three reasons: one, Sky wants to be an actress on Broadway and Scarlet wants to be a costume designer; two, I’ve always wanted to see the Radio City Rockettes Christmas Spectacular; and three, I have a birthday coming up.
We’re only going for a short trip because of the kids’ schooling, but we’re trying to pack in as much fun as possible. My mother-in-law very generously used her timeshare points to get us rooms right in the heart of Broadway, which we’ve been swooning about ever since. That freed me up to concentrate on the entertainment. We planned the trip around the Rockettes, but we are also planning to attend some Broadway/off-Broadway shows. Although tickets are expensive, there are ways to save quite a bit. Here are some tricks I used to find great deals:
1. Look up the standard ticket prices so you have a basis for comparison. Every show has their own website, so you can just do a search, or you can pull up the list at nytix.com*. Tickets for the Rockettes, for example, cost anywhere from $45 to $209, depending on where you sit and when you go. I just used the nytix.com list to get an idea of regular ticket pricing and what was available. They offer a list of discount codes, but they charge $4/month for the list. I was able to find good codes elsewhere, so I didn’t try it out.
2. Audience Rewards: Sign up for this points program. It works like any other rewards program: you buy things or do things (like fill out a profile) and get points. Most of the ticket purchase places have a place for you to enter your number. You get two points per dollar spent on tickets, and it works with discounted tickets. You can use the points to purchase tickets, but it takes a lot of points. I’m planning to transfer mine to another rewards program.
Speaking of rewards, don’t forget to check your current rewards memberships for discounts. Chase, for example, seems to offer quite a few.
3. Find a coupon code for the show you’re interested in. Here are some of the sites I checked and/or used:
BroadwayBox.com: This site has discount codes for most of the major productions. I found a discount here that wasn’t available on any other site.
Playbill.com: Sign up for a free membership to access a huge list of discounts. This is also the place to look for a job on Broadway, by the way.
TKTS.com: TKTS is traditionally known for its discount ticket booths in New York City, but they also sell discounted tickets online.
4. Take the code to the actual show web site and find seats. This is actually the hardest part. Make sure you enter the code before you look at seats so that the correct seats will be color-coded for that discount. For the Rockettes, I actually put in four different codes and compared the available seats to find the ones I wanted. Tickpick.com blogs about which seats are good in different venues. They also have tickets available for resale, and they rate the tickets based on price and quality. A+ tickets are a great deal, D-, not so much.
While we’re in New York, we’ll also be looking at last-minute deals for a matinee. We found two possibilities:
TKTS.com: TKTS offers tickets for up to 50% off. They have three ticket booth locations. The Brooklyn location has matinee tickets the day before the show. The others have them the day of. Download the free app to see what’s available before you get in line. We bought tickets at a TKTS booth when we were on our honeymoon and saw two fun productions.
Rush tickets: Rush tickets are last-minute tickets that you get at the theater. It is usually one to a customer. They are offered either by lottery or to students only. Nytix.com has a list of days and times that rush tickets can be picked up.
So, that’s what we’re doing to make Broadway a little more affordable. Now I’m looking for tips on how to eat inexpensively in New York. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!