A ticket at your local cineplex costs an average of $8 (or about $11.50 if the flick is 3-D). Learn how to reel in your costs.

By Vera Gibbons
James Baigrie

Buy in bulk. You can purchase four-packs of tickets at a discount ($2 to $3 off a ticket on average) from eight different major theater chains at bulktix.com. And Costco members can buy tickets at the warehouse club that may be cheaper than a local theater’s admission prices.

Redeem credit-card perks. Call your issuer to see what promos you can use. Chase Freedom (yourchasefreedom.com) currently offers cardholders two tickets for the price of one at select theaters. Visa Signature users who spend $25 or more on tickets get 20 percent off buying at fandango.com/visasignature. And several cards, like American Express (americanexpress.com), let you use your points to buy tickets.

Join free loyalty clubs. Become a member of AMC theaters’ MovieWatcher Rewards program (amcentertainment.com) and you’ll get two points for each ticket you purchase (you can earn a maximum of four points per visit). Once you’ve accrued 10 points, you’ll score a free popcorn; 30 points gets you a free ticket. Or sign up for the Regal Crown Club (regmovies.com), which rewards you with one point for every dollar you spend on tickets, four points per dollar of concession purchases. Rack up 150 points and you’ll earn a free ticket.

Hit daytime screenings. Head to an AMC theater all day on Monday through Thursday or before noon on Friday through Sunday and get half off your ticket. (A typical matinee costs around $7.50, versus $5 or so for these showings.)

Come springtime, cruise to a drive-in. Many of these 1950s icons are still in business (there are approximately 380 nationwide; find one near you at drive-ins.com), and they offer retro prices to boot. Catch new releases starting at about $7 per person or $10 per car.

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