Quick Guide to Hersheypark

Quick Guide to Hersheypark

Last month I spent a fabulous weekend in Hershey PA for Sweet Welcome 2015.  Myself along with five other bloggers were invited to learn all about Hershey PA.  I’ve shared a few posts about the weekend but I wanted to share a quick guide to Hersheypark.  My family and I usually visit in October (during off season with my dad’s job).  The park is usually closed to the public so it’s not like how it would be if we visited during peak season.  If you’re ever planning a trip to Hersheypark, I hope you consider this guide.  I am sharing tips, tricks and insider advise on all things Hersheypark to make your trip a memorable one.

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Source: Hersheypark

With a family of six we are all about getting the best value for our money.  Planning family trips take a lot of planning and budgeting.  Hersheypark is a great option for families in the surrounding areas like Maryland, New York, Delaware, New Jersey, Washington D.C. and of course Pennsylvania.  For us the drive is about ninety minutes if there isn’t traffic, perfect for a getaway with no need to worry about flying. Hersheypark offers lots of different specials throughout the summer season and off-season to make it affordable option.

Hersheypark

Tips for Saving On Admission:

  • Visit during the off-season:  Hersheypark has multiple specials during off-season that’s affordable and a great way for guests to enjoy the park.  Right now they are offering 30% off a single-price admission for their Early Summer Sale.  Purchase by May 31st and visit by July 31st to enjoy those savings.  Other seasonal pricing includes Springtime in the Park, Hersheypark in the Dark and Hersheypark Christmas Candylane.
  • Purchase a 2-Day Play Pack:  There’s so much to enjoy atHersheypark that getting atwo day park pass may be a great idea, especially if you are visiting in the summer.  You could spend on day on the Boardwalk and water park area and the other day exploring all the coaster and other rides.  The 2-Day Play Pack includes:
    • 2-day flex ticket, 2 meal tickets, 1 souvenir cup & 1 refill, 13 game vouchers, and 10% off one retail item. AT $177 per person (ages 9-54) that’s a 35% savings if you purchased it separately.  It’s only available on online.
  • Hersheypark Event Special:  Going to a concert at the Giant Center?  Present your concert ticket at the gate the day before or the day after your concert and receive a special discount price of $41.95 per ticket.  I’ve seen the Concert Series for Summer at Giant Center and they have an impressive list of artists.  Plan a fun getaway with a concert and a day at the park.
  • Sunset Pack: Visit Hersheypark later in the day and save big on admission.  The sunset pack is only available online and costs $31 per regular admission ticket (kids and senior tickets also available).
  • Purchase a Season Pass:  If you know you’re going to Hersheypark more than twice during the season.  I suggest a Season Pass.  They have lots of options for season passes starting at $110 per person.  Season Pass holders enjoy unlimited visits, free parking, discounts and more.
  • Use Your Military Discount:  Show your Military ID and save on Hersheypark tickets.  Just take this coupon with you to the gate, along with your ID to enjoy your discount to fun.  See coupon for terms and conditions.
  • Visit with a group:  We usually visit as a part of a group and it’s always amazing.  Groups of 20 or more can save up to 45% off admission tickets.  If you know a lot of people, plan a trip and get a group rate.  To learn more about group specials and offers visit the Hersheypark website.

Make a Woopie Pie

Tips for Saving on Food:

I remember going on trips when I was growing up and my mom would pack food in a cooler so we could save money.  Part of the fun of traveling and family vacations is experiencing the food.  Hersheypark has a few ways you can save on food when visiting the park.

  • Purchase a Meal Ticket: The Meal Ticket option gives you the option to choose from 18 different locations when you’re hungry and ready to fuel up.  Each location has different menu options so be sure to check them all out before hand.  Each meal ticket comes with a souvenir drink cup.  Meal Tickets are $14 each and includes an entree, side and cup.
  • Purchase Park Ticket Packages: Hersheypark offers two park ticket packages that include meal tickets.  The 2-Day Play Pack and the Ride, Dine and Play Pack.  Bundling provides additional discounts for guests.

Hersheypark has quite a few options for dining, you can see all the options on the website.  Did you know Hersheypark offers allergen friendly dining options?  During our visit we learned that they update their dining facilities to ensure no cross-contamination of foods.  While at the park visit the Outpost to try their allergen friendly food items.  To learn more about the allergen friendly menu visit the website and rest assured your family will be taken care of when dining at Hersheypark.

Queen bed at Hotel Hershey

Tips for Saving on Lodging:

I had the pleasure of staying at the Hotel Hershey during my visit and it was simply amazing.  While it does seems alluring to stay at one of the area hotels, you can actually save money by staying at the official resorts of Hersheypark.  Guests of Hersheypark Resorts enjoy the best prices on tickets to the park and enjoy free seasonal shuttle service to and from the park from the different resorts.  Resort options and savings include:

  • Hersheypark Camping Resort:  Has everything you need for the perfect camping trip.  Whether you are choosing to rough it in just a tent or if you prefer to go glamping in one of their new log cabins.  The camping resort offer lots of options for family to be as connect to nature or connect to the internet as you prefer.  They feature free wifi on site, a game room, fire pit for roasting marshmallows and lots of other amenities.  To learn more visit the Hersheypark Camping Resort website.
  • Hershey Lodge: During Sweet Welcome we had a quick tour of Hershey Lodge and there was so much to see.  One of my favorite features was the Kids Check-In area of the hotel.  It’s the perfect way to start a vacation with the kids.  Guests at the Hershey Lodge are in for a treat, with tons of dining options right in the lobby area, finding the right meal is easy as pie.  I would highly suggest the Hershey Grill for breakfast and The Bears Den for lunch or dinner.  The lodge also had meeting spaces and also houses a convention center.  It’s an ideal location for all kinds of events.  Rates start at about $199 per night and vary based on specials.  To learn more about all that Hershey Lodge has to offer visit their website.
  • The Hotel Hershey: This luxury hotel has everything you need to have an amazing vacation.  Start the day off in their newly renovated gym, have a relaxing day in the spa, enjoy breakfast at the Circular, browse the shops in the hotel lobby, or end the day with a swim at the pool.  There are so many option at the Hotel Hershey.  I enjoyed my stay there, it was luxurious and relaxing.  Rates for the Hotel Hershey starts at about $299 per night and vary based on specials.  Visit the Hotel Hershey website to learn more.
  • Kids Stay, Play and Eat Free Package:  This package is based on families of four.  Rates start at $319 per night at the Hershey Lodge in May & June, and $389 per night at the Hotel Hershey.  Rates increase during peak summer months.  The package includes:
    • This package will make the whole family smile! Your kids will have a blast riding the day away at Hersheypark and you’ll love saving big with FREE breakfast and FREE Park admission for kids 17 and under!
      • Deluxe accommodations
      • One-day admission to Hersheypark for two adults and two children
      • FREE kids’ breakfast, when an adult breakfast is purchased
  • Stay Early or Midweek:  Hersheypark resorts also offer special discounts when you book during the months of May and June or when you stay in the middle of the week.  You can find discount rates online when you’re planning your stay.

Guests of the Hotel Hershey and Hershey Lodge enjoy free tickets to the Hershey Gardens and the Hershey Story, available upon check-in.  Learn more about the Hershey Resort Advantage online.

Zoo America Welcome Sign

Zoo America is another great option when visiting Hersheypark.  Admission is included in your ticket price to the park so it doesn’t cost you anything extra to visit the zoo from inside the park.  We always visit when at Hersheypark, its usually one of the last things we do in our day.  It’s a great way to end your day.  While visiting the park we had the opportunity to participate in Zoo America After Dark, I highly suggest you visit when visiting the park.  Zoo America is open year round.

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Hersheypark is home to 12 roller coasters and on Memorial Day they are officially opening their thirteen roller coaster – Laff Trakk.  I’m not a roller coaster fan but there are great ones at Hersheypark.  My family and I are attending a special event for Laff Trakk and I can’t wait to share all the details with you.  There’s a roller coaster for everyone at Hersheypark, the super fast and ones for the kids.

Hersheypark has lot of great kiddie rides, both water and dry rides.  This is one of the main reasons I prefer them over parks specifically for kids.  They offer rides the kids can enjoy, rides for the family and rides for adults.  That’s not including the arcade games as well.  When visiting in the summer time visit the Boardwalk and enjoy one of their fifteen water attractions.

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Look for Hershey Characters when your walking around the park for photo opportunities.  We saw the Hershey Kisses Character around the Kissing Tower during our visit.  It’s another way to create fun memories and photo opportunities are free.  All the characters are very friendly and the love having their photo taken.

Chocolate World

Before entering Hershey Park or before leaving be sure to visit Chocolate World.  I never realized that they offered a free ride inside of Chocolate World.  It’s a History of Hershey Chocolate and at the end you get a free piece of Hershey Miniatures Candy.  Chocolate World features all kinds of sweet treats from the Hershey family of products.  Be on the look out for sales and specials.

Bonus Insider Tip:

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If you stay at one of the Hersheypark Resorts be sure to book a Hershey Trolley Works Tour.  All tours depart from Hershey’s Chocolate World.  The tours run 364 days a year, rain or shine, expect in snow.  The Trolley Works Tour was very informative and we received all kinds of chocolate samples on the tour.  We even saw the home of Mr. Milton Hershey.  The tour price varies from $10.95 for children and $14.95 for adults.

I hope you found my Quick Guide to Hersheypark helpful.  If you have any questions, tips or suggestions be sure to leave them in the comments.  To plan your next trip to Hersheypark visit their website and be sure to connect with them on social media on Facebook and Twitter.  Also download the Hersheypark app to keep before you visit the park so you’re ready for a day of fun when you arrive.