Tuesday, September 17, 2013

More Cost Saving Opportunities at the Library

Some of you may know that the Friends of the Library have launched a Museum Pass program that can save you money when you want to spend some time at an area museum. The Friends have purchased memberships to five popular museums and have made them available to South Brunswick Public Library cardholders who are members of the Friends of the Library group. 

Memberships start as low as $10.00 but for that small investment, you can have access to the passes and receive all the other benefits of a Friends membership: Copies of the Library’s bi-monthly Compass newsletter, via U.S. Mail; Invitations to “Friends Only” book sales; DVD rental coupons; and Overdue fine coupons.
And if you decide to become more involved you may: Meet other friends who have an interest in organizing Library Programs and Special Events and gain satisfaction knowing that you are supporting your Library in a very special way! 

The passes that are available and the benefits they include are:

  • The Grounds for Sculpture in Hamilton, NJ, good for four people that would be $12 per person without the membership card.
  • Garden State Discovery Museum in Cherry Hill, NJ for 6 people plus receive a 20% discount to the Discovery Store Gift Shop. The entrance fee is normally $10.95 plus tax per person.
  • The Guggenheim Museum in New York City, good for up to four people and half-price for others in your party, plus 10% off the restaurants and gift shops and the opportunity to skip a long entrance line. Entrance fees are normally $22.00 per person.
  • The Insectropolis in Toms River, good for two that would normally cost $7.00 per person.
  • The Zimmerli Art Museum on the Rutgers campus in New Brunswick, for 2 adults with a 10% discount at the museum store (children under 18 are free at the museum). The regular entrance fee is $6.00 per person.
On Labor Day, my husband and I used the pass to the Guggenheim. You can read more about our experience on the Library blog at: http://southbrunswicklibrary.blogspot.com/

But we got additional cost savings for this excursion by doing some advanced planning and couponing. We discovered that you can print out coupons to park in the city. If anyone has ever purchased Broadway Theater tickets, you know that you get a coupon for parking at the Hippodrome on your eticket or ticket envelope. But if you are not going to be near the Hippodrome at 6th Avenue and 63rd Street, you can find coupons for other garages online. TripAdvisor (www.tripadvisor.com) suggests to “always seek a coupon for discount parking in NYC.” The two sites they recommend are: http://www.iconparkingsystems.com and http://nyc.centralparking.com. I used QuikPark (www.quikparkgarages.com) where I could enter my dates of arrival and departure and get a site specific coupon quoting the total price I would pay including the 18% NYC tax. They have garages all over the city and the search on their site starts with entering your destination so that you can find the cheapest lot or garage in the best proximity to where you are going or staying. I know this is not the “greenest” solution, but by the time you pay for the train or bus fare for everyone in your party and subway or taxi fare from the station to your destination in the city, not to mention the possibly of having to pay for parking where you board the train or bus, this option of driving in and parking with a coupon might be more affordable tolls not withstanding. 

If the program is a success, we hope to expand the choice of museums so become a Friend today and take advantage of the Museum Pass program and a whole lot more! It is the Friends who fund the FREE and fun programming we do here at the library – your support is greatly appreciated. You can join online at http://www.sbpl.info/help-the-library/friends/join/

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