It’s no secret that fall is my favorite time of year. As a child it was likely due to having a Birthday at the start of October, and now it’s branched out to having some of my other favorite occasions around this time – my engagement, my anniversary, a drop in temperatures, and of course the N.C. State Fair.

Making our yearly trip to the fair can get extremely costly. Admission, food, rides, and now alcohol all come with a pretty hefty price tag. Today I’m sharing some tricks Kevin and I put into action to save a couple dollars during our trip!

  1. Use the buddy system. The food portions are pretty generous, and can be split amongst two (or three!) people. Make your dollar go further and free up some room in your tummy to allow for all sorts of food consumption. This plan of attack has always worked very well for me and Kevin, since we agree on most of the fair food options.
  2. Pack your own food and drinks. Now, the entire reason Kevin and I go to the fair is to try all of the wonderfully horrible foods that are available, so we’d never pack snacks. However, purchasing drinks is highway robbery. My bag will definitely include a couple bottled waters for us as we explore the fairgrounds.
  3. Use your ID! Student and military IDs, along with senior status, allow for a discount on gate admission.
  4. Venture out on canned food night. This year, October 18th, bring 5 cans of food to gain free admission into the fair. I’m positive you can find 5 cans of food for much less than the $9.00 cost of admission. I have yet to take advantage of this deal, but i’ve heard the crowds are a little crazy on canned food night. Use your best judgement!
  5. Check out the educational buildings and other free exhibits. As an animal enthusiast I always gain enjoyment out of walking through the animal buildings, checking out the produce setups, and seeing things like the first place chickens or the largest pumpkin grown in North Carolina. These exhibits are free to check out, and several vendors typically have free samples. Don’t forget to lookup times for the pig races and dog shows as well.

If you have any tips or habits to save dollars at the fair, i’d love to hear about it in the comments!

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