Tips for Taking Kids To The Movies

With so many Free & Low-Cost Summer Movies, it's a great time to get the kids to the movies!

By Jenny Sites June 20, 2024

Prepare them before leaving home:

  • Explain to them that you will wait in line to get a ticket and/or for a snack to take into the movie with you. (Decide ahead of time if you are going to purchase snacks from the snack bar. If you are not getting food, tell your child in advance that you don’t plan to buy snacks and then steer clear of the snack area, if possible, to avoid them seeing all of the choices.)
  • Tell them that the movie seats fold up and they will need to sit down on them to keep them from popping back up.
  • Remind them that during the movie they should keep talking to a whisper.
  • Share with them that the lights will go out and stay out during the movie. Show them the exits and assure them that the aisle lights will stay on so while it will be dark enough for the movie, there will still be some lights.
  • Remind your child to let you know if they need to use the restroom during the movie. Let them know that it's ok to go and come back in. You don't want them to have an accident because they are afraid they won't be able to return to the movie if they leave.

Image Credit:  Erica Lauren Leinwand Mehler

Make a plan: Remember, it’s hard for kids to sit still for long periods of time, even if it’s a great movie!

  • Pick a time of day when your child is usually the happiest. Most theatres offer matinee times earlier in the morning or try a free or cheap summer movie so you don't feel like you're wasting money if you leave early.
  • Order tickets in advance to avoid the line.
  • Bring a little blanket in case the theatre is cold.
  • Bring a cup with a lid and a small, mess-free, snack container.
  • If your child is small, ask for a booster seat. It will allow them to sit up higher and help hold the seat down.
  • Get to the movie early if you think it will be difficult to find seats. If you are going with another adult, send them in to hold seats while you walk around with your child to avoid having your child sit in their seats longer than necessary. 
  • Bring a little something quiet for your child to do while you wait for the movie to begin. You can also bring a silent fidget toy or favorite stuffy if it helps your child sit still longer.
  • Use the bathroom before going in.
  • Sit near the aisle. It makes it easier, to get up and take a break, if you need one. 


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