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When it’s unbearably hot in the summertime, my family always escapes to an ice cold movie theater. But last weekend, it cost $75 to take my family of four to see The Little Mermaid, and that was before popcorn and drinks. Since then, I’m on a mission to find fun family activities that will keep us cool, and whose cost won’t make me lose mine. So I started researching Dave & Buster’s prices.
Listen, when my kids told me they wanted to celebrate their good report cards at Dave & Buster’s, I was worried about the cost. But right now, they’re offering really good deals all summer long, like ½ price games all day on Wednesdays. And you can get a free kid’s meal with any adult food purchase of $10 or more if you show this barcode.
So, we gave it a shot, and now it’s our no. 1 way to beat the heat and have fun together this summer. Here’s everything you need to know about how to save at Dave & Buster’s.
1. Now through July 31, you can get a free kid’s meal with an adult food purchase of $10 or more*.
My entire family’s dinner at Dave & Busters was cheaper than our popcorn, candy, and drinks at the movie theater. And what makes this deal good is that it’s not limited to just one free kid’s meal per table. Since my husband and I both ordered entrees ($13.95 each), our kids (both under 12) ate for free.
Note that you will need to show your server a barcode to get the deal. You can click here to access it, and we’ve also added it here:
2. Dave & Buster’s adult menu has gotten a major upgrade.
I didn’t have time to look at the menu before our visit, but I was expecting to decide between chain staples like potato skins or mozzarella sticks. However, the menu is full of appetizer options like Garlic Parmesan Truffle Fries and Creole Shrimp Dip with Wonton Crisps. For my entree, I got the Chimichurri Bowl ($13.95), which was full of veggies like grilled asparagus, roasted cauliflower, and seasoned avocado.
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3. With over 140 games, their indoor arcade has something for every age.
From Skee-Ball to air hockey to Dance Dance Revolution, everyone in my family found their old faves — and so many new ones, too. Plus, if you buy a $20 Power Card right now, you’ll get five free games. I decided to get one Power Card for each kid. Every time they swiped it, they could see how many chips they had left, so there was no tantrum about suddenly being all out.
4. There are also a ton of family-friendly games that we love playing together.
After the kids used their cards, I reloaded one to enjoy games as a family. My husband loves showing our kids how to play larger-than-life versions of his ’80s faves like Centipede and Pac-Man. But our favorites to play as a family are the fishing game Wicked Tuna (based on the TV show) and Connect 4 Hoops. Connect 4 Hoops is like two games in one: Classic Connect 4 combined with a basketball shoot-out. My kids keep talking about how we need to have a rematch.
5. Games are ½ price all day on Wednesdays.
You read that right. Plus, you can still get the free kid’s meal with an adult food purchase of $10 or more offer on Wednesdays. I crunched some numbers, and when we go back on a Wednesday, our dinner *and* games will cost less than four movie tickets.
6. Dave & Buster’s is just as cool as a movie theater, but instead of sitting for two hours, my kids ran around non-stop.
Our night at Dave & Buster’s wasn’t just a fun family activity; it was also a workout. (My AppleWatch even asked if I’d started a workout while we were playing!) I think most parents would agree that getting the kids to bed when they don’t have school the next day can be a struggle. But the night we went to Dave & Buster’s, bedtime was a breeze: The kids were so worn out they went right to sleep, no questions asked.
7. My husband loved watching the Mets vs. Cardinals game on a huge screen.
While the kids used their Power Cards, my husband and I watched the game together on a massive TV. Our table was close enough to the arcade that the kids could quickly get us if they needed something. At the same time, it was far enough away that we couldn’t hear all of the noise. It felt like we were on our own date night, except we didn’t have to budget for a babysitter.
8. Drinks and cocktails are fairly priced.
I really didn’t expect to see Strawberry Watermelon Frosé on the Dave & Buster’s menu. However there it was, and I thought it was fairly priced at $10.29.
9. Dave & Buster’s opens at 10 AM all summer long.
This is great to know for those mornings when you just need to get out of the house. Or even when the blistering heat decides to come out in full force before lunchtime. I love the idea of going on a Wednesday morning right after they open, and then using the free kid’s meal deal for lunch afterwards. I’ll just tell my kids they can’t redeem their tickets for prizes until after they finish eating.
*Promotional. EXPIRES 07/31/2023. Children 12 and under can receive one free kid’s meal with the purchase of an adult food item of $10 or more. Offer can only be redeemed in-store with a server. Offer valid on one-time use and cannot be combined with other offers. Offer is not valid on Special Events Packages. Additional restrictions may apply. Non-transferrable. No cash value. Not for resale. See the store for details.