We took a spontaneous 2-day trip to Los Angeles for Star Wars Night at Dodger Stadium on a budget! Those crazy “convenience” fees for our tickets are still bugging me, but I think we pulled off an amazing whirlwind family trip on a pretty tight budget. Here’s every tip we use to save money on a Dodgers game at Dodger Stadium!
How much does it cost your family to go to the movies? If you’re not a baseball fan, this may not hit you in the same way it did me, but did you know it can be cheaper to take your family to an Major League Baseball game than to watch Spider-Man: Homecoming?!
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I’m not a huge baseball fan—but it is the only sport I know the rules to, so at least I can follow the action! My husband and kids are huge Dodgers fans, and my kids play Little League, so I’m pretty much along for the ride, but I do have a lot of fun watching live games. (You’d have to tie me down to the couch to get me to watch baseball on TV, though!)
I am a huge fan of saving money while making the most out of every experience! Dedication to that goal has made spending 30+ days a year at Disneyland possible for our family!
Here is everything I did to save money on our Star Wars Night at Dodger Stadium Tickets!
You’re reading Part 1: Budget Family Travel Tips: Star Wars Night at Dodger Stadium! How to get cheap(er) Dodgers tickets!
Part 2: Star Wars Night at Dodger Stadium Tips for Families! (coming up soon!)
Part 3: Budget Family Travel Tips: How to save money at a Dodger game! (coming up soon!)
Part 4: Budget Family Travel Tips: Safe Family Hotel Near Dodger Stadium! Residence Inn Redondo Beach Hotel Review! (coming up soon!)
Part 5: Budget Family Travel Tips: Free Family Fun in Los Angeles Before a Dodger Game! (coming up soon!)
What is a Good Price for Dodgers Tickets?
This is how I found the best price possible for our Star Wars Night Dodgers tickets:
1. I started at Stub Hub.
While I didn’t buy my Star Wars Night Dodger tickets on Stub Hub in the end (more on that below), I checked four major third-party ticket sites and Stub Hub definitely had the best seat selection at the lowest prices. Plus, since the official MLB site links directly to Stub Hub, I knew we’d get in to the game without any issues. (My biggest fear using a third-party site for any tickets is that we’ll be denied entry and get stuck paying at the door and then have to fight with that third-party company to get a refund.)
2. I did not check Craigslist or Facebook.
Chances are slim that those tickets will be legitimate.
3. Since I’ve been to Dodger Stadium many times, I know there are no bad seats…some are just farther from the field.
While I’d love to score great seats close to the Dodgers dugout, I’m content to sit anywhere but Top Deck. Not that there’s anything wrong with Top Deck seats, but my son gets vertigo, and thinking of climbing up to the Top Deck even makes me woozy. Plus, Reserve level seats are often the same price as Top Deck seats, so always sort ticket prices low to high.
If you’re unfamiliar with Dodger Stadium, Google “Dodger Stadium interactive seating chart” in a browser tab next to the ticketing site tab. I use this interactive Dodger Stadium seating chart. That makes it easier to see exactly where you’ll be seated when you find cheap tickets with confusing labels like, “14RS FF 4”.
4. I knew exactly which Dodger game we wanted to see: the Star Wars Night game!
If your dates are flexible, you can save money by going to a less popular game (games are ranked 1–6 stars, 6 stars being the most expensive) or going at a less popular time, like an afternoon weekday game.
5. I checked the Dodgers Promo & Freebie Games Schedule to get all the news about Star Wars Night so we knew what to expect.
Thank goodness I did that before I bought my tickets on Stub Hub, because I found out that only Star Wars Night tickets purchased directly from the official MLB website got the “Star Wars Night Package” that included this adorable and much coveted BB-8 tshirt!
Exclusive ticket packages are becoming increasingly popular at Dodger Stadium. I figure the package exclusives are the only way MLB dot com can compete with sites like Stub Hub, plus, offering premium ticket packages with freebies probably cuts down on the number of LA locals who buy a cheap Top Deck ticket, show up at the game just to claim the freebie, then take off so they can post the freebie on eBay and make a profit.
Star Wars Night is definitely the only Dodger game I’d willingly pay the MLB dot com exclusive package price for. If I had bought our Dodgers tickets on Stub Hub, we would have enjoyed the Star Wars events, photo ops, star sightings, and all of the cool Star Wars-themed fun during the game—including Star Wars-themed Friday Night Fireworks after the game—but we would not have received the “free” BB-8 Star Wars Night t-shirts, and can you really say you were there if you didn’t get the t-shirt?
Before you buy tickets on a third-party site, double check the MLB website so you know whether the freebie for the Dodgers game you want to see is available to everyone with General Admission, or only with a premium ticket package.
6. I searched and searched for promo codes and cashback from sites like Ebates for the MLB website, but I found no way to get any discount on MLB dot com.
That meant I’d have to pay full price for my Star Wars Night tickets, and I’d have to find other ways to save money on our trip to Los Angeles.
7. What is the deal with convenience fees?
In the old days, I begrudgingly paid “convenience fees” that covered mail-order tickets, but in the digital age, all of the ticketing is done by computer so it’s basically a shakedown. There’s no way to avoid convenience fees.
On MLB dot com, the convenience fee for each Dodgers Star Wars Night ticket was $8! Convenience fees on Stub Hub for the same Dodger game were about $5, plus, Stub Hub had better seats at cheaper prices. What I’ll do for a t-shirt.
If you don’t care about the Star Wars Night Dodger t-shirt, you can get better seats for less money and still experience all the fun of Star Wars Night at Dodger Stadium!
The price difference between pretty darn good seats on Stub Hub and fair-to-middling seats with the Star Wars Night package was $20 when I included the convenience fees in the total price per ticket. I decided it was worth $20 per ticket to get the BB-8 t-shirts. Our family will get a ton of use out of them because we’ll all wear them on our Disneyland trips (and my daughter wouldn’t change out of her BB-8 Dodgers t-shirt for 3 days, so the cost per use on her t-shirt has already gone way down).
8. How Much Do the Cheapest Tickets at Dodger Stadium Cost?
You can get Dodgers tickets as low as $6 for Top Deck and Reserve levels!
Here’s a breakdown of the difference in price for identical seating area for Kids Back to School Backpack Night at Dodger Stadium 2017:
This is a great example of a true freebie at a Dodger game: the first 12,000 ticketed kids get a FREE Dodgers backpack!
Kids Back to School Backpack Night Dodgers Game is Sunday, August 13, 2017 at 1:10pm! Remember these tips:
- Only kids 14 and under get the backpacks.
- Lap-sitting babies and toddlers don’t get one, only kids with tickets.
- Make sure you arrive early before all the backpacks are claimed! Traffic to Dodger Stadium is always an issue, but it’s usually much lighter on a Sunday than a weekday.
Stub Hub has $6 tickets on the Reserve level (just below Top Deck) with $4.82 convenience fee per ticket for a total of $10.82 per ticket.
Get cashback from Stub Hub when you start with Ebates. Right now, Stub Hub is offering 3.5% cashback.
The official MLB site is sold out of the cheap tickets for Dodgers Backpack night! The cheapest tickets now are $28 plus that $8 “convenience” fee! Since this is a true Dodgers freebie night (no special ticket package required), you can get better seats cheaper on Stub Hub plus score a free Dodgers backpack for each of your kiddos!
9. Wing it! Just walk up to the ticket booth and buy tickets!
If you are very daring, or a Los Angeles local, you could just head to Dodger Stadium on game day and buy tickets at the ticket booth.
If you do not live close enough to drive in and walk your family up to the ticket booth to see if you can score cheap tickets for that day’s game, I would not attempt this tactic! What if the cheap seats are sold out? Will you pay the extra cash to get in and avoid disappointing your kids? Most people would. I would. Bottom line: Convenience fees stink but you get guaranteed seats at the price you’re willing to pay.
More Budget Tips for Family Trips posts:
What’s your best tip for visiting Dodger Stadium with your family? Comment below to be featured in an upcoming post on Dodgers game tips for families!