San Antonio Art Museum Reciprocal Membership Benefits

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If you are a member of an art-loving family living in San Antonio, then you probably have memberships to several local art museums. In addition to the familiar membership benefits like free admission and access to members-only events, are you taking full advantage of museum reciprocity benefits to visit other art museums across Texas and the United States? This blog post helps you sort out which art museum reciprocal admission networks you can unlock using your memberships to art museums in the San Antonio area.

Art Museums in San Antonio with Membership Programs

Art museums are a great resource for helping your children learn about art and art history. Art unlocks our compassion for humans living in other cultures, other circumstances, and other periods of time. Enjoying art museums as a family is a fun way to spend time together and build a foundation for a lifetime of learning. Homeschoolers know this, and many of them spend lots of time taking advantage of what museums have to offer. Those of us with children in public or private schools can visit museums for enrichment.

San Antonio Art Museum Reciprocal Membership Benefits - drawing in the galleries at the McNay Art Museum | San Antonio Charter Moms

Drawing in the galleries at the McNay Art Museum

Hopefully, your children are learning about art and art history at school, but visits to art museums provide access to materials beyond what teachers can provide in the classroom. Field trips are wonderful, but schools have limited resources and instructional time to dedicate to activities outside the classroom. Being present as a parent to spark and guide conversations with my children, including discussions of difficult topics, is an important role for me.

San Antonio Art Museum Reciprocal Membership Benefits - Visiting George W. Bush's "Portraits of Courage" and meeting Sergeant First Class Michael R. Rodriguez, USA, Retired | San Antonio Charter Moms

Visiting George W. Bush’s “Portraits of Courage” at the Witte Museum and meeting Sergeant First Class Michael R. Rodriguez, USA, Retired

How do you make access to museums more affordable, especially if you are a frequent visitor? Joining museum membership programs gives you access to free admission at those museums, as well as benefits like members-only hours, member-exclusive events, and discounts on museum store merchandise and camps. Here are some of our favorite art museums in San Antonio, and links to their membership programs:

San Antonio Art Museum Reciprocal Membership Benefits - crafts inspired by Egyptian sarcophagi at the San Antonio Museum of Art | San Antonio Charter Moms

Crafts inspired by Egyptian sarcophagi at the San Antonio Museum of Art

Reciprocal Admission Networks for Art Museums

Have you ever used your membership at a San Antonio-area art museum to get free admission at a museum in another city? Reciprocal museum admission programs let you do that in cities all over Texas and the United States. Museums have banded together to share membership benefits with members of other museums. These reciprocal benefits enhance the value of museum memberships at a low up-front cost, and help museums build a loyal base of supporters.

San Antonio Art Museum Reciprocal Membership Benefits - collage in the galleries at the McNay Art Museum | San Antonio Charter Moms

Collage in the galleries at the McNay Art Museum

Here are some examples of reciprocal admission networks, as well as which San Antonio art museums participate in them and which membership levels include reciprocal benefits.

San Antonio Art Museum Reciprocal Membership Benefits - Field trip at the San Antonio Museum of Art | San Antonio Charter Moms

Field trip at the San Antonio Museum of Art

Use Your San Antonio Art Museum Memberships for Free or Discounted Visits to These Texas Art Museums

So, look at the cards in your wallet—or go sign up for some new memberships—and see which art museums around Texas you can access with reciprocal benefits. These art museums are listed in alphabetical order by name, including the city if it’s not already obvious, and mentions which reciprocal networks they participate in.

Texas is a big place, but this list is just the tip of the iceberg—there are hundreds more art museums across the United States and North America that participate in these reciprocal networks. Now do you feel inspired to get on the road and see some art?

San Antonio Art Museum Reciprocal Membership Benefits - Catlin's North American Indian Portfolio at the Briscoe Western Art Museum | San Antonio Charter Moms

Catlin’s North American Indian Portfolio at the Briscoe Western Art Museum

Planning Ahead to Use Art Museum Reciprocity Benefits

As you make your plans, it’s a good idea to look up the listings to check for restrictions. For example, there may be a geographic restriction—even some Austin museums may be too close. When you show up, be sure to bring your membership card from the relevant art museum in San Antonio, as well as a picture ID. Depending on the network or the museum, there may be limits on how many people you can bring in free for one visit on your membership; similarly, some institutions offer discounted rather than free admission. Also, don’t expect to get in free to galas or other special event fundraisers. However, some places offer do offer discounts at their gift shops. If a popular exhibit is in high demand and tickets are selling out days in advance, then go ahead and pay for advance tickets; that’s better than showing up in person to use your reciprocal benefits and find out the exhibit is sold out for the duration of your trip.

San Antonio Art Museum Reciprocal Membership Benefits - Video installation at the McNay Art Museum | San Antonio Charter Moms

Video installation at the McNay Art Museum

We hope this guide helps inspire your art-loving family to use your memberships to art museums in the San Antonio area to go explore other cities. Your membership at local San Antonio art museums is not only supporting those institutions, but also strengthening the network of art museums across Texas, the United States, and North America.

San Antonio Art Museum Reciprocal Membership Benefits - weaving inspired by Picasso tapestries at the San Antonio Museum of Art | San Antonio Charter Moms

Weaving inspired by Picasso tapestries at the San Antonio Museum of Art

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