Wednesday, March 6, 2019

How to Save Money on Race Entries

You always hear people say that they run because it's cheaper than therapy. I think that's only partially true, especially if you're someone who likes racing. Races are so exciting and fun and motivating, but sometimes races can be so expensive. For someone that is as frugal as I am, it makes it hard to do more than one race a year. And since the racing season is among us, I'm sharing a couple of ways to help you be able to afford racing more often (because we all love races).

Early Registration

The easiest way to save money on a race that you want to do is to sign up for the races as early as possible. The closer you are to the day of your race, the more expensive it is. Most races offer early-bird pricing for those who sign up early and in some cases, you can sign up as early as a year in advance.

Join a Running Club

Join a local running club or group. A lot of times races will allow a team discount for those who are in a running club or group that have several people who are planning on signing up for the race. But local running clubs are great for more than just the race discount. It's an awesome way to make friends, ask your running questions, and get some good group runs in together.

Follow the Race

Follow the race on Facebook. Some races have facebook or Instagram pages that they will share discount codes on every now and then.  It's also a great way to get in touch with the race directors and to ask your questions about race day.

Get a Sponsor

If you're a pretty good runner you can reach out to certain running gear companies and see if they will sponsor you in your race for wearing or using their gear. I've never done this personally but I'd love to give it a try!


A lot of races will offer a free race entry for the following year (or another race in their series) if you volunteer for one of their races. As a teenager, I volunteered at a lot of races and loved it mostly because I really loved the atmosphere. Trevon also volunteered a few years ago for a Spartan race and was able to run the Spartan race the next year. It saves money, it's a fun experience and you're helping someone out so everyone wins.

Ask for it

Do you ever get asked what you want for your birthday or for Christmas and not have any ideas? Now you do, ask for a race entry to a race you're really looking forward to! Someone else will pay for it and you don't end up getting something random that you'll never use.

Racing is a fun experience and it doesn't have to always be expensive!

When is your next race?

Have you ever gotten in a race for free?

How many races do you do in a year?


  1. These are great tips for saving money on races. I am so not good about getting early bird pricing. I will have to try some of these ways!

    1. I feel like I always try to get early bird pricing, but I'm always unsure which races I'm running for sure haha!

  2. Love this post! I'm always looking for ways to save on race entries. I've actually received discounted or free entries by contacting the race organization directly.

  3. With the exception of this winter (January and February had lots of races being cancelled), I usually do a couple races each month, sometimes more. I almost always register as early as possible to get the best deal, plus it allows for better planning if I have them on the calendar.

    1. So true! I try to get registered as early as possible. As soon as I know that a race will work for me I sign up, but sometimes it ends up being after early bird pricing expires.

  4. Great tips, thank you! I tend to book mine last minute. Need to get myself organised and plan events well in advance to get the early offers.

  5. Registering early definitely saves money. Sometimes big races do flash discounts on their socials so always good to follow along on them

  6. I used to be a stickler for racing cheap. But after a series of DNS's last year, I've now become more of a fly-by-the-seat, last-minute registration kind of girl. So far so good. But definitely more $$$.

  7. I am racing the Atlanta Marathon this weekend - we're flying down using cc points and it's offsetting the cost tremendously. I used to run for a club team and the shoe store paid for me to race a track 5k in NC back in the day.

  8. I tend to register early for the races I want to do for sure, because I'm always worried they will sell out quickly. I also search around for coupon codes. Last year I ran the Chicago RnR Half. I think the regular price was $109, and I happened to see a one-day special of $59. I typed in two separate $10 off codes and they both worked, so I got in (fairly late in the game, I think) for $39! My next race is the London Marathon next month!

  9. Great tips!
    I have not been running for a while to let some injuries fully heal, but I really do miss racing! My bank account is does not miss all the race fees ;)