If you’re going to a game at Nationals Park I’ve got some tips and hacks to help you get the most out of your ballpark experience. Hello! Welcome to Trip Hacks DC, my name is Rob. I’m a tour guide here in the nation’s capital. If you’re coming to Washington DC and you’re looking for the best tips, tricks, and hacks for exploring the city, make sure to subscribe to this channel and hit the bell notification icon so that you don’t miss any new videos. And if you’re interested in signing up for a Trip Hacks DC tour, head on over to TripHacksDC.com afterwards, to see the tours that I offer. If you’ve been to a game at Nationals Park before and have any favorite tips or hacks leave a comment on this video and let me know what they are, so that others can learn from them as well, otherwise, let’s get started… 1. Don’t drive. At a lot of Major League parks the transportation system works the same way: drive, pay, park your car, and walk straight into the game. For Nationals games there is parking nearby, but it’s very limited, which means that prices are pretty high. For the closest lots $30 – $40 per car is pretty typical. The way that most fans arrive at the game is by Metro. The Navy Yard station is only one block north from the center field gate, so it’s very convenient. You can also bike, there’s a huge Capital Bikeshare station nearby, and a bicycle valet if you have your own. And if none of these options work you can always take a taxi, or an Uber or a Lyft to the game. However I will warn for 7 p.m. starts, if you’re trying to cross downtown during rush hour, the traffic can be brutal. So make sure to factor that in if you don’t want to arrive late. 2. Bring your own food. One of the biggest complaints about attending a Major League ball game is that the food is so expensive. What a lot of people don’t know is that a lot of MLB parks will actually let you bring outside food, it’s just usually not very well advertised; and Nationals Park is one of those parks. If you do want to bring your own food here’s my favorite hack for doing it. When you get to the Navy Yard metro station you will see signs pointing in two different directions. In one direction it says Nationals Park in the other direction it says, New Jersey Avenue. Most fans will obviously follow the signs and exit at Nationals Park. You should follow the New Jersey Avenue signs exit over there. That’s going to put you out on M Street, where you can cut across one block to First Street and a huge row of fast casual restaurants. Taylor Gourmet is our local hoagie restaurant, and sandwiches make excellent ballpark food because they’re compact and easy to carry. I will often stop at Chopt and get a salad – and yes I’m that guy who brings a salad to a ballgame. I also really like Rasa, which is a cool twist on Indian food, and the dishes come in bowls, so they’re pretty easy to bring into the park. The one food on this block that I don’t recommend is Chipotle, because trying to bring a burrito in often turns into a huge mess. And if you do pick a food that requires silverware don’t forget to grab the silverware! You would be shocked to find how hard it is to find a plastic fork inside the ballpark. Also note that while you’re allowed to bring in your own food, you are not allowed to bring in drinks. The one exception being a plain, unopened bottle of water. So if you try to bring any other type of drink, or a refillable water bottle, they’re going to make you dump it before you come in. 3. Take advantage of happy hour. If you’re the kind of person who likes to get to the park early for batting practice, then you’ll be able to take advantage of the inside the park happy hour. This is offered only in one spot: the bar under the scoreboard in right field. This year you can get a 16 ounce can of Bud or Bud Light for $5. The most important thing to know is that happy hour ends 35 minutes before the scheduled first pitch, so if it’s a 7:05 start you have to have your beer in hand by 6:30. If you do miss out on happy hour then I recommend finding one it be District Drafts stands around the park. I mean, if you’re going to pay over $10 for a beer it might as well be a good one. 4. Sit in the shade. I cannot emphasize this enough, especially if you haven’t been here before, Washington DC summers are brutally hot and humid. If you go to an afternoon game in the summer and sit in the sun you will roast. Even for evening games in June and July there are some sections where you will be sitting in the sun for the first hour to hour and a half of the game. Now, maybe you like that, and that’s perfectly OK. I personally can’t handle sitting in the sun for three hours, so I always pick a seat in the shade. Generally speaking for a day game, you want to be sitting on the third-base side, avoid the first base side, and the outfield, and for more specific information about which sections to seek out and avoid I actually wrote a blog post that you can check out by going to www.triphacksdc.com/bestseats. And that’s it! Thank you for watching this video. If you found it helpful you can subscribe to this channel by clicking on the Trip Hacks DC logo which is popping up right now at the bottom of the screen. And if you’re coming to DC and want to sign up for a Trip Hacks DC tour, you can click on the Capitol dome on the left side of my head, that’ll take you over to TripHacksDC.com where you can see the tours that I offer. Enjoy your trip!