February 20, 2021

New to the U: Free and Discounted Activities for University of Utah Students

Salt Lake City, Utah has so many things to offer visitors and residents alike all year long. There is a wonderful variety of activities for all interests, and you don’t even have to splurge! Specifically, being a college student on a budget does not count you out, as there are a number of popular destinations that offer discounted or even free access for students.

Here’s a (non-exhaustive!) list of locations with University of Utah student discounts:


Students in gallery at Utah Museum of Fine Arts

The Utah Museum of Fine Arts is a great place for any student to spend an afternoon browsing through both contemporary artwork and historical artifacts. As both the state and the University of Utah’s fine arts institution, the museum is a focal point for culture among students and the community at large. The museum features over 20,000 pieces of original art and contains collections of European, Pacific, Mesoamerican, Ancient Mediterranean, American and regional pieces. They have also recently created new galleries dedicated to African and Chinese objects.

The UMFA is free to University of Utah students, as well as all students studying at public universities in Utah with a student ID. Don’t forget to reserve a ticket in advance! During the COVID 19 pandemic, the museum is still open to the public, but with limited capacity and additional safety precautions. 

Natural History Museum of Utah

Dinosaur Fossils at the Natural History Museum in Utah

The Natural History Museum of Utah is the state’s go-to resource for exploring history. NHMU is dedicated to understanding the past and helping humans find their place in it. Students can see collections of objects related to paleontology (dinosaurs!! and other fossils), anthropology (ancient peoples), mineralogy (cool rocks), and botany (really old plants). The museum is located on the University of Utah campus in Salt Lake City- just a quick walk from student housing.

Visiting NHMU is free to all University of Utah students. Right now, due to the COVID 19 pandemic, all museum visitors need to reserve tickets in advance. The museum has limited capacity, but is taking precautions to ensure that they are still open and available to the public.

Red Butte Garden

Beautiful flowers at Red Butte Garden

Located on the eastern edge of the University of Utah campus, Red Butte Garden is the largest botanical garden in the Intermountain West region. The Garden boasts numerous plant collections, display gardens, educational programs and an outdoor summer concert series—all within walking distance from upper campus housing! Additionally, the Garden contains five miles of scenic hiking trails that seamlessly combine history with nature. If you’re looking for even more hiking options in the valley that will stun you with their views, check out these great options!

Red Butte Garden is free for all University of Utah students with their student ID. Due to COVID-19, the Garden is requiring that patrons pre-register when purchasing tickets, maintain six feet of distance from others, and properly wear face coverings. They have also implemented designated entrances and exits and contactless check-in for the safety of their guests.

Utah Symphony and Opera

The Salt Lake Convention Center Theater.

USUO is an organization that houses the Utah Symphony and the Utah Opera. Unfortunately, in-person live performances are suspended until March 24, 2021. However, the website still has tons of amazing content to watch. They have USUO on Demand, which is a streaming service that allows you to watch performances live through their website. Utah students (K-12) and teachers can receive free streaming. If you’re missing attending live performances due to COVID, the website will satisfy that. They have a podcast called Ghostlight, which is a behind-the-scenes look at the world of theater. They also have clips of past performances for you to watch. 

Summer 2021 is going to be big, since USUO is hosting the Deer Valley Music Festival in Park City. Musical talent attending this event include Kristen Chenoweth and The Beach Boys. The festival takes place with a few performers every weekend from July through August. This is a great way to embrace the warm weather and listen to amazing music this summer. 

All tickets are 20% off for University of Utah students.

If you’re in need of a snack to enjoy while watching USUO’s amazing performers, check out the five best cookie places in Salt Lake City.

A great view of the University of Utah in Salt Lake City, Utah.

As students ourselves, we always love finding discounts! We hope you enjoyed our collection of free and discounted activities in Salt Lake City. If you enjoyed visiting any of these locations, please share this list with your friends and fellow students!

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