The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Thursday May 26th

Pit Talk

How to buy concessions at a UNC sporting event on a budget

Students love supporting UNC athletics, but we love food, too.

It’s really hard to ball on a budget while also living in the land of four-dollar water bottles and six-dollar chicken sandwiches; however, it’s totally possible for a hungry fan to get food with a starving wallet. Here’s how:

Look out for arena specials:

A lot of the venues have their own specials throughout the season that bring their extravagant prices back down to a reasonable level.

One of my favorites happens during women’s basketball season where they have half-price concession nights where instead of paying five dollars for one slice of pizza, you can get a regular soda, hot dog and chips for the same price.

Usually these specials get announced on social media by the teams or by the athletic department, so be sure to follow them to hear when you’ll be able to eat on the cheap.

Bring a water bottle:

I feel like I hand over my soul to the cashier every time I pay four dollars for a bottle of coke or a bottle of water, especially when there’s already free water from the fountains around the stadium. Instead of letting them mock me, I use the water fountains to my advantage.

Since you already bring your backpack with you everywhere, just stick a Nalgene bottle in one of the side pockets. I promise it doesn’t make you look lame at all, and the security officers at the doors never confiscate water bottles during the bag checks.

Pro tip: Sometimes you can even sneak in a soda if you buy it at the Pit Stop on the way to the game and hide it well enough. If you pull it off, it’s an easy 75-percent savings.

Eat free food before the game:

Thanks to Carolina Fever, a lot of major games will have free pizza or free T-shirts as a promotion for the first few hundred people. This is especially true if you’re planning on seeing one of the Olympic sports teams play, since they love doing promotions for higher attendance.

Again, these promotions are usually announced on social media, but if you just walk by Carmichael and see a huge line, there’s a good chance people are getting something for free. Just jump in line and enjoy your spoils as you pass the concession stand with a full belly and a full wallet.

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