A visit to Hersheypark is absolutely worth the money. But if you’re on a budget, how can you save money and still have a fun trip? From extra time in the park to additional areas you may not know about, here are the best free things at Hersheypark.
Disclosure: I’m happy to be one of the awesome 2023 Sweetest Families for Hersheypark! I’m also happy to give you the scoop on our visits this year!
The truth? I love saving money just as much as the next lady, but I don’t want to feel like I’m skimping on travel. So, my favorite way to budget theme park travel is to look for the freebies when I visit. And, happily, Hersheypark in Hershey, PA, is no exception. Here are my favorite freebies that will definitely help ease your budget for your next visit.
Best Free Things at Hersheypark – Free Extra time in Hersheypark
This is definitely a really good way to make the most of your Hersheypark theme park ticket: extra hours in the park the night before your entrance begins.
Officially called a “Sweet Sneak Peek”, show your paid park ticket the night before and you can enter 2 1/2 hours early.
Additionally, if you’re a guest of an official Hersheypark hotel property, you may enter 3 1/2 hours early the night before your ticket officially begins.
Note: You will need to pay for parking during the Sweet Sneak Peek, but keep that stub and show it the next day and you’ll get complimentary parking!
Best Free Things at Hersheypark – Free Cups of Water
On hot theme park days, staying hydrated is a must. Technically, you’re only allowed to bring in one bottle of water per person (you may rent a locker and keep additionals), but you can quench that thirst easily: free cups of ice water.
Simply walk up to any concession stand serving fountain drinks and ask for a cup of water. Employees will happily give you one.
Another way to keep the fluids flowing: purchase a refillable park cup and you’ll get free refills during your visit. If you like to drink a lot of soda, this is the best way to go, budget-wise.
Best Free Things at Hersheypark – Hersheypark Free WIFI
Not much explanation needed for this one. Once you hit the gates, you should have no trouble accessing free wifi. If you’re having issues, ask a park employee to help.
Best Free Things at Hersheypark – Free Photos
On my first visit to the park, one of the first things I wanted to do was get my photo taken in front of the entrance fountain. Happily, there were a couple of employees there, more than willing to take a family photo.
Seriously, all you have to do is ask. As long as it’s safe for you and the employee, you’re good to go.
Best Free Things at Hersheypark – Free Zoo Access
The first time I visited Hersheypark, I was happily surprised to learn that admission to ZooAmerica is included with park admission.
The zoo is definitely geared towards the kiddos. Also, it’s not giant in size, so it’s worth walking the giant path to see the animals.
Best Free Things at Hersheypark – Hersheypark Waterpark Access for Free
Yep, another great freebie (especially on hot days) is free admission to Hershey Waterpark, The Boardwalk.
You will need to bring your own towels and a swimsuit when you visit. Again, there are lockers near the outside picnic areas. You can always run back to the car and grab them when you want to visit.
Lastly, you can always hit the waterpark first, change, then pay for a locker.
Best Free Things at Hersheypark – Free Voucher for Bad Weather
Say you’ve been planning a visit to Hersheypark forever and it’s a very rainy day. If the majority of the major rides are closed for a full 60 minutes, you’ll be able to receive a Return Visit Voucher.
The voucher will be valid for any operating day during the current season you’re visiting.
Best Free Things at Hersheypark – Free Tickets at Hersheypark
There is a way to score a free ticket to Hersheypark, but it comes at a price. Doesn’t make sense? Here’s the lowdown.
When you purchase a Hersheypark Annual Pass, you’ll receive one free park ticket. The ticket is good for a single day admission and is valid only for that passholder season.
So, technically, you can get a free ticket, or give one to a friend or family member.