Low Cost Activities
as a College Student Attending the University of Texas at Austin
There are many free or low-cost opportunities given by the University itself as well as many events in the surrounding Austin area available to students for entertainment purposes.
The easiest and most efficient resource available to students is through the My UT application with the University. Here you can proceed to the tab labeled Calendars and events. This is a great way to stay updated on university events and receive excellent opportunities to hear presentations and attend fun campus wide events. You can also search Texas Today of The University of Texas- events to get the same result.
The absolute BEST way to get involved and find Low Cost activities is by joining a club or organization! Many clubs and organizations on campus offer free events that get you involved, get you out of the dorm, and may get you some free food in the process! For more information regarding clubs and organizations or to find one perfect for you visit https://utexas.campuslabs.com/engage/.
Interested in exploring the art, culture, and history that Austin has to offer? There is a variety of museums and tours that work in collaboration with the University of Texas at Austin to provide its students with an excellent opportunity to explore new outlets and promote a rich learning experience. These activities include:
- The Blanton Museum of Art is our very own on campus museum located at 200 E. MLK Jr. Blvd near the Jester Dormitory area. This museum offers free admission to students attending the University of Texas with proof of a Valid Student ID. For more information visit https://blantonmuseum.org/.
- The Harry Ransom Center is also located on the very edge of campus that offers a variety of guest speakers, exhibits, and is home to the famous Gutenberg Bible. It offers free admission to UT students with a Valid ID. For more information and hours visit https://www.hrc.utexas.edu/.
- LBJ Library is another opportunity for free admission for UT students with a valid ID. Located at 2313 Red River St. Austin, TX easily accessible by either walking or public transportation. This museum has a variety of fun exhibits including a replica of the oval office. For more information visit http://www.lbjlibrary.org/
- Texas Memorial Museum focuses around that of wildlife, biodiversity, geological findings, and paleontology. It is located at 2400 trinity St. easily accessible by walking or by public transportation. The Texas Memorial Museum offers free admission to UT student with a valid ID. For more information please visit the website https://tmm.utexas.edu/.
- Another low-cost activity would be a trip to the Capitol Building! You can simply tour the capitol building yourself or you can go on one of the free 30-minute guided tours. This is a great way to see some beautiful architecture as well as learn some history behind the main governing building in Austin, Texas!
However, there are also many options to explore if you are more of an outdoorsy person. Austin has so many free nature exhibits, parks, street art, and outdoor Galleries that are available to the public and are completely free but often take donations!
- Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is free for UT students with a valid Student ID! This center is located in South Austin at 4801 La Crosse Ave. Austin, TX. It is a little way away from campus but is a perfect opportunity for a little road trip with your friends! For more information about the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center visit https://www.wildflower.org/visit.
- Zilker park is a park completely open to the public and free to visit. Here you can have a picnic, enjoy the outdoors, use the wide-open space for games and activities, bring your dogs (or maybe even get to see some dogs). Zilker Park also hosts a free event called Trail of Lights during the holiday season. This is a fun opportunity to see a beautiful display of holiday lights with your friends and the rest of the Austin community! They also host an annual UT night during Trail of Lights for UT students that offers free admission!
- Hope Outdoor Gallery also known as Graffiti Park is an excellent way to become exposed to Austin culture and street art as well as have an opportunity to show off your own skills. This Gallery is free to view and open for pictures! It is currently set to have moved to a new location by the Austin-Bergstrom airport sometime in 2020! For more information and updates please visit https://www.hopeoutdoorgallery.com/.
- Another fun activity would be an overnight or weekend camping trip! There are plenty free camping sites a short drive away from the UT Austin campus. If you want to sleep outside yet do not own any of the right equipment Gregory Gym has an option to rent camping equipment for cheap! Or you could always just sleep in your car! Food and transportation would be the main barriers but are easily accessible for cheap.
- A popular tourist attraction that Austin has to offer is that of the Bats of the Congress avenue bridge. There are many opportunities to view this surreal experience through different tours and viewpoints but can go and view for free in many areas.
- One of the many things the city of Austin has to offer is that of the amazing street art scattered around the city. A great way to fully explore this side of Austin is through a self-guided tour of these murals that often leads to perfect picture opportunities and a fun experience with friends. A great deal of these murals is located in Downtown Austin which is easier to access through the public transportation system and then on foot.
- You could also go on a fun bike ride! Although you can rent bikes almost anywhere while down in Austin it can be a little pricey dependent on how long you want the excursion to be but registering bikes is free on campus! So, to go the cheaper route if you already own a bike register it and have unlimited transportation around the city and on campus!
- You could also take a fun little walk down Congress Avenue after you are finished with the tour of the Capitol building! This is a fun time to stop and eat, window shop, ride scooters, and just simply have fun with friends!
- Movies in the park is also another great free experience if given the chance to go! For more information on which parks and other park events visit https://austinparks.org/movies-in-the-park/.
If museums or the outdoors are not of a particular interest to you, That’s Okay! There are still so many other opportunities to become involved in the community and explore the city of Austin!
- The Campus events + Entertainment committee puts on a variety of events campus wide free for UT students with the validation of a student ID! This includes the showing of movies in the Student union movie theater. They are consistently holding events and playing new movies every Thursday! They also have another movie series featuring many of the classics that premieres on Wednesday nights! Keep an eye out for these events on campus because you definitely don’t want to miss out!
- Roller skating rinks or bowling alleys are always a fun activity to do with friends and is often very cheap! Some places offer discounts dependent on the night or give group discounts! Make sure to do some research before you go!
- If you are looking for a fun and laid-back adventure feel free to visit the Austin central library and the many amenities that it offers.
- For the many coffee connoisseurs in and around Austin Mozart’s Coffee is a hub of activity! A great place to do homework, hang out with friends, or even meet new people! During the Holiday season they also have a special holiday lights display that is said to be incredible!
- For those who enjoy relaxing and watching a movie an Alamo Drafthouse or any movie theater for that matter would be a perfect fit! Going to see a movie with friends every once in a while, is a fun little adventure!
- The city of Austin is the live music center of the world, so you are bound to find a multitude of free live concerts across the city you just have to look! This can be said for live theatre as well!