Festival Coverage

A Cheapskate’s Guide to Hopscotch


If you are anything like me, there is a good chance you will be balling on a budget during Hopscotch. Here is the ultimate guide to getting your pennies worth at the festival! 


The cheapest ticket option is to buy a general admission ticket ASAP. I highly suggest signing up for Hopscotch’s emails too, so you can know when tickets first go on sale and so that you can get an early bird special. The first early bird special is $125, the second is $149, and the third is $175. Unfortunately, all of those have sold out, so you can either buy a general admission wristband for $199 or buy a day wristband. Thursday’s wristband costs $85, Friday and Saturday’s cost $99, and Sunday’s cost $45. Who needs a VIP wristband anyway? You’ll be too busy running around downtown Raleigh trying to find the next act to enjoy the perks of an expensive VIP wristband.


Hopscotch has partnered with the Sheraton in downtown Raleigh to provide discounted housing during Hopscotch. The Sheraton overlooks the City Plaza, so if you’re not feeling the crowds, you could easily go back to your room and open your window to listen to the bands playing below you! Cheaper housing options would be to stay at a friend’s house in Raleigh or stay in an Airbnb. Airbnb has a deal similar to Uber; if you refer a friend, you and the friend get $40 off any Airbnb! Grab a friend and stay at a hip, trendy place in downtown for a low cost and a convenient location.

Parking prices, especially during Hopscotch, tend to be a bit outrageous downtown. To avoid high parking costs, you can take the completely free, open to the public, Wolfprowl bus if you are staying near NC State. You can even park your car around NC State (we have free parking after 5pm!) and take the Wolfprowl from there! The Wolfprowl runs Friday and Saturday nights during the fall and spring semesters from 10pm-3am. It is a continuous loop with service approximately every 35 mins. You could also take a Lyft. Use WKNC’s Lyft code, WKNC50, to get a free $50 in rides. If you are up to the challenge, you could also walk or bike downtown. There are plenty of bike racks downtown, and it could actually be super convenient to have a bike with you to get from venue to venue quicker. I saw a lot of people doing this last year and thought the idea was brilliant.

Honestly, the best option is to eat before you come. Carb-load on all your favorite foods to fuel up for the night, and get at least a little protein so you can maintain your stamina. If you get hungry during the night, you can always buy a snack or something small to tide you over. Purchasing little snacks is going to be a lot cheaper than a full meal in busy downtown. At the end of the night, there may even be some free food on Hillsborough Street; last year it was pizza.

There you have it, I hope these tips and tricks make your Hopscotch experience as cost-efficient as possible, and remove a little financial worry so you can have the time of your life rocking to some incredible artists!