ASTC Science Center Travel Passport Program
Pricing updated 9.21.2016
Last weekend we celebrated our eldest son’s 7th birthday in Orlando. We did NOT go to Disney. Really. Instead we found a fantastic Hilton hotel using my hubs reward points that has a discounted Disney breakfast, three pools and allergy-free rooms. If you don’t have reward points it’s only $79/night. Wow, you can’t beat that.
However, Mickey Mouse waffles and a few high-fives with Minnie, Donald and Pluto at Sunday breakfast were the extent of our Disney experience.
Instead, we chose to spend our weekend at the Orlando Science Center for free. Yeah, I said: FREE! The normal price for our family of four is $90. As a homeschool family, we look for discounts whenever we can because homeschooling can be quite a resource drain, right?
How did we get such an exceptional deal? Through the ASTC Science Center Travel Passport Program. As a member of a science center or museum participating in the ASTC Travel Passport Program, you are eligible for benefits such as free general admission when you travel outside of your local area. This includes museums all over the United States, btw.
So if you are a member of the Florida Museum of Natural History ($125 for a family membership as of Jun 2015), you can show your FLMNH Membership Card at participating ASTC museums, such as the Orlando Science Museum, and get in free or at a reduced rate. Wow!
However, I bought my membership through MOSI, the Museum of Science and Industry in Tampa. Homeschool families receive 50% off a Limited MOSI membership for a party of 5 or 8! As of 2016, MOSI Party of 5 Explorer Membership is $149 (meaning $74.50 for homeschoolers). Upgrades to MOSI’s Ultimate membership is also available. Visit the Membership Desk on your next visit to MOSI to sign up. Note: You can also give MOSI a call or email at firstname.lastname@example.org to order a homeschool membership.
If you don’t have a Homeschool I.D. card you can order a free card here: Homeschool Helpdesk Free I.D.
Another Florida museum that is part of the ASTC program is the Great Explorations Children’s Museum in St. Petersburg. What a fantastic imagination-based, hands-on museum for younglings ages 4-10. My favorite part was the pizza making station – I’m still itching to recreate the clever foam and flannel toppings. Genius! You can check out that homeschool field trip here: Tampa Homeschool Field Trip.
So all-in last weekend, our family spent a weekend away for less than $200. Our hotel was free, thanks to my hubs reward points and the bestest museum ever (according to Jack and Eli) was also free. How nice is that for a Happy Homeschool Birthday?
I hope this homeschool resource tip is helpful.
PS: If you know of some killer discounts for Gainesville-area homeschoolers please share by leaving a comment below.