If you haven’t heard about local discounts, resident benefits and freebies such as the San Diego Hometown Pass, Balboa Park Explorer Pass, ResortPass and Youth Opportunity Pass, it’s time! Read all about the perks, parameters and prices to start exploring (and saving) below:
- Spend the day showing out-of-town guests around town for free with a San Diego Hometown Pass. With the purchase of one full-fare adult ticket from a visitor, local residents enjoy the Old Town Trolley, SEAL Tour or Whaley House for free. Apply for a Hometown Pass through Historic Tours of America: www.hometownpass.com; 866-753-7975.
- Discover & Go. Reserve a free family day pass at the San Diego Public Library for attractions such as Children’s Discovery Museum, Museum of Us and Skateworld. Must be a local resident age 16 or over and have a library card in good standing. www.sandiego.gov/discoversd
- Save money on admission for up to 16 participating museums with a one-day, one-week or one-year Balboa Park Explorer Pass. Read about the options at https://explorer.balboapark.org; 619-232-7502. San Diego Zoo and Comic-Con Museum are not included.
- When you purchase a one-day ticket to the Museum of Us in Balboa Park, you can receive free admission for a whole year. Just opt-in with an associate during your visit. It’s that simple. www.museumofus.org
- Kids eat free at dozens of restaurants around town. Access our list at www.sandiegofamily.com/things-to-do/kids-eat-free/kids-eat-free.
- There are local farmers markets every day of the week! Find them all at www.sdfarmbureau.org/farmers-market.
- Take a family “daycation” at one of San Diego’s favorite resort destinations. ResortPass offers single-day access to local pools, spas, cabanas and more at dozens of hotels and resorts across the county. Prices and amenities vary by location. Get the details at www.resortpass.com/hotel-day-passes/San-Diego-3.
- Youth ages 18 and under can get unlimited free rides on the San Diego bus, trolley, Coaster and Sprinter until June 30, 2024 through the Youth Opportunity Pass pilot program, a collaboration between SANDAG (San Diego Association of Governments), Metropolitan Transit System, North County Transit District and the County of San Diego. Learn more and register at www.sandag.org/yop.
Do you know of other insider tips for San Diego residents or visitors? Email details to
Lisa Gipson is the managing editor of San Diego Family.