How to be a Movie Buff on a Budget

My girlfriend and I are absolute film buffs. We watch a movie together almost every night and frequently have movie marathons throughout the weekend. I’m very proud of the DVD and Blu-ray collection we’ve been able to accumulate over the past few years—I’m even more proud that we managed to do it on a budget! There are so many options available when it comes to watching movies these days and some are more expensive than others. I’ve got some tips on helping you sift through the different choices so that you too can be a movie buff on a budget!

Streaming Services

Be strategic when it comes to streaming services. There are an abundance of great movies on Netflix, Hulu, HBO Go and Amazon Prime. However, there simply isn’t enough time to watch everything they have to offer. Instead of subscribing to every service at once, choose just one and subscribe to that service alone for several months. Make a list of all the movies that appeal to you on that service. Cancel that subscription as soon as you’ve watched them all, rotate to a new service, and begin watching their offerings. Instead of paying multiple monthly costs, you’ll only be paying for one. Also, by the time you rotate back to say, Hulu, their set of offerings may be different than before. Not only can this save you money, but it can help keep things fresh.


Take a look at your local library. Although books are usually the first thing that comes to mind when someone mentions a library, they also carry some decent media collections. They have movies, as well as audiobooks and video games that you can borrow. After you’ve watched everything they have on their shelves, you can even request more titles via interlibrary loan. You can watch all of these movies for free! Just make sure you don’t forget your library card at home. 

Clean out Your Collection

Go through your DVD and Blu-ray collection and ask yourself whether or not there’s a significant chance you’ll want to watch each movie again in the next year. If you decide that you won’t watch a certain movie, set it aside. Once you have a bundle of movies that you won’t rewatch, sell them off. One of the most effective ways to get a solid return is to use Fulfillment by Amazon, which will allow you to ship all of the DVDs and Blu-rays at once to Amazon and sell them on their website. Amazon will take a portion of the profits made, but they handle all of the fulfillment and shipping needs for anyone that purchases your movies. Another option is to make your way to the nearest Bull Moose. Local to Maine and New Hampshire, this store will buy your pre-owned CDs, DVDs, Blu-rays, video games and even books. Simply walk into the store, head over to the cash register and say that you’d like to sell some movies. The money they’ll give you is determined by condition, popularity and how many copies of that movie they already have. They’ll make a cash offer and offer even more in store credit. If you’re a movie buff, I’d suggest store credit. Many of their used movies sell for $2.97. Bull Moose is where I buy and sell the majority of my movies.

Be Selective

Although it’s tempting to go out and watch every new release in theaters immediately, it can be costly. A movie theater ticket is expensive. You’ll be paying the premium to watch a movie that you can borrow from your library for free a few months later. If you enjoy the movie theater experience, consider only going to movies that you’re really anticipating or have heard incredible things about. You might regret paying for a movie ticket if the movie isn’t what you expected it to be. Also, if you can, go to a drive-in theater. It’s cheaper and most drive-in’s are double features. This means you can watch two new releases for less than the cost of a traditional theater ticket. Although, some traditional theaters do offer discount nights. If you’re committed to having a traditional theater experience, going on discount nights is a great cost-saving option.

Children of Men is my favorite movie. What’s yours? I’d love to know!

Take care,