What are the best deals around the University?

Dear Benny:
My co-worker tells me that she’s saving a bundle with a special Penn discount on her monthly cell phone bill. I’ve worked at Penn for several years and I’ve never heard of this employee discount. How can I get in on this deal, and any others like it?
—Deal or No Deal

Dear Deal:
Glad you asked. You’ll be happy to know that employment at Penn has its privileges, especially when it comes to saving on cell phone plans, computers and, in some cases, new vehicles.

On the cell phone front, you are entitled to a minimum 10 percent discount on the qualifying monthly service plans of the University’s cellular providers: AT&T Wireless, Sprint Wireless and Verizon Wireless. To find out about the other employee discounts, go to www.hr.upenn.edu, click on “Faculty and Staff Discounts” in the blue column on the left side of the page, and then click on “Deals@Penn.”

Also, did you know that your PennCard is your golden ticket for admission to Penn cultural attractions? Show your card to get free admission to the Penn Museum, Morris Arboretum and Institute of Contemporary Art. Your card also entitles you to discounted tickets at the Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts.

But wait (as those late-night informericals say), there’s more. Penn offers discounts on admission to Six Flags Theme Parks, The Franklin Institute, the Philadelphia Orchestra and Philadelphia Museum of Art. Visit “Faculty and Staff Discounts” and “Special Programs” at www.hr.upenn.edu/programs/ for complete details.

Finally, the University offers a program called Pennsavers, in partnership with the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance and Phillyfunguide, that enables deal-seeking staffers to get half-price theater, dance and other performing arts ticket offers emailed to you. To sign up, go to www.hr.upenn.edu/programs/ and click on the “Pennsavers” tab.

Got a question for Benny? Send it via e-mail to current@pobox.upenn.edu or via regular mail to the Current, 200 Sansom Place East, 3600 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104-6106.

Originally published on May 20, 2010