FAQs

FAQs

RARES does not accept paid advertising. Members do not pay a fee for placement or special placement of information on the RARES web site. Member companies, including Associate Member (vendor) companies, may pay a membership fee to be a current member of the association. The association may obtain revenue (i.e., commissions) from purchases of online merchandise offered at a discount on the RARES web site.

The association does endorse the companies who are members of RARES and encourages RARES members to support these organizations with their purchases. Likewise, the association takes complaints of alleged violations of discount offerings seriously and asks that the membership report any concerns immediately to the CEO or the RARES Board. The association will make every effort to investigate and if necessary mediate a resolution and may take action for violations including revocation of membership for violations of RARES policy and procedures.

What is RARES?

RARES - the Regional Area Recreation and Employee Services Association - is a professional, tax-exempt, not-for-profit member-supported association of people who work in the Employee Services and/or Benefits/Recreation fields. RARES members recognize the importance of providing employee services, benefits, recreation, and fitness/health promotion as an extremely cost-effective solution to improving employee morale.

RARES was chartered in 1983 (as the Rochester Area Recreation and Employee Services Association to assist in offering employee benefits and discounts on area products and services to its membership. It was initially started by the three largest manufacturers in the Rochester area in an effort to assist smaller companies in enjoying the same kind of buying power to impact employee benefits that they enjoyed due to their size. RARES collective buying power - we presently represent more than 180,000 employees (directly through RARES and through our affiliations with partners such as the Iroquois Healthcare Association) - is the reason why we are able to offer significant discounts on area products and services to our membership.

RARES offers companies who wish to promote their product or service a chance to join the association as Associate Members. Associate Members offer a discount on their products or services to other RARES members.

If you are part of a company that is looking to obtain discounts on behalf of your services, you are looking to join as a General Member. The more than 140 RARES General Member companies who are members receive all of the benefits and discounts offered by RARES Associate Members. RARES is also an excellent opportunity to improve your business connections through networking at our Speakers Bureau series and our Vendor Fairs.

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What is the purpose of RARES?

The purpose of the association is to bring together individuals representing employees in New York and throughout the nation, who are interested in promoting various activities, events, products and services that would be beneficial to their respective employees.

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What are the benefits of RARES membership?

Our General Membership pays an annual fee to access timesaving resources, tools, and information about discounts and free services available to their employee members. RARES provides the following benefits to our General Members:
  1. Often, the most significant discounts available in the Rochester area
  2. Self-contained discount information conveniently displayed on this secure web-site (password protected)
  3. Regular newsletter mailings with new discount information
  4. One stop-shopping for consignment tickets – the opportunity to purchase tickets (consignment and pre-pay) from one vendor (the RARES office) as opposed to many separate entities
  5. If a company does not wish to participate in the consignment ticket program, their employees may purchase tickets normally available on consignment directly from the RARES office - reducing time demands upon company personnel
  6. Minimized time spent talking with sales reps concerning discounts
  7. Easy employee access to discount information via the website
  8. Opportunity to network with other professionals about employee benefits and needs

Employee services and recreation programs create positive work environments for employees. Through a RARES membership you will be able to network and enhance your employee services and recreation programs. This results in:

  • Increased Productivity
  • Increased Motivation
  • Improved Morale
  • Improved Attendance
  • Improved Teamwork and Camaraderie Among Employees
  • Reduced Turnover

These benefits promote healthy activities for employees and their families, lead to better relations between employers and employees and save companies thousands of dollars!

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What is your consignment ticket program like?

RARES offers its members the opportunity to purchase tickets on consignment for:
  • Buckmans Car Wash & Detail Shops
  • Darien Lake
  • Delta Sonic
  • Enchanted Forest/Water Safari
  • Little Theatre
  • Martin's Fantasy Island
  • NYS Fair
  • Red Wings Baseball
  • Regal Cinemas

Consignment tickets for the theme parks are available at the beginning of the Summer. Your company nominated RARES Representative may request a quantity of tickets that they believe appropriate for your organization and we will ship them to you. No payment is required at the time you order. At the end of the season, all unsold consignment tickets, along with payment for those you have sold, are due back at the RARES office.

Dozens of our theme parks now use electronic ticketing so your employees/members don't have to obtain consignment tickets through you at work. Popular attractions include Hershey Park, Seabreeze, Universal Studios, Sesame Place, Busch Gardens, Colonial Williamsburg, SeaWorld, all Six Flags theme parks and many many more.

Certain venues that used to offer consignment tickets through RARES now merely require you to show your RARES membership ID card at the front gate to obtain discounted admission. These attractions include African Lion Safari, Genesee Country Village and Museum, Long Acre Farms and the Amazing Maize Maze, the Clubhouse Fun Center and the Rochester Museum and Science Center.

For ongoing activities such as Buckmans Car Wash, Delta Sonic, Regal Cinemas, and the Little Theatre, consignment tickets may be requested from the RARES office on a rolling basis (when you sell your tickets, you may pay for what you've sold and request more).

RARES also offers its members the opportunity to buy tickets on consignment directly from our participating vendors at the same price that RARES pays for its consignment tickets. A number of our members choose to utilize this option for some of their consignment tickets. What RARES offers you is convenience - a one-stop shopping experience. Your company may already purchase discounted tickets from one or more of the amusement parks in the area. RARES offers you the opportunity to consolidate this activity with one organization. You have one order form and only one representative to deal with instead of two, four, or six. You can cut one check at the end of the Summer season instead of five. And our theatre tickets DO NOT EXPIRE. That's right, they do not expire. If you presently purchase Regal Cinema tickets, for example, you know that you have to purchase large quantities to receive a discount and that they have an expiration date. If you don't use them before the expiration date, you lose your investment. RARES will always exchange an expiring ticket for one good for another year. That's the RARES advantage.

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Do we have to participate in the consignment ticket program?

No. As your employees may also purchase all of the same tickets for amusement parks, car washes, oil changes, and movie theaters directly from RARES (at a slight price point premium), you may elect not to take advantage of this particular RARES benefit. More than 70% of our members, however, do participate in the consignment ticket program.

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Who is our company RARES Representative and what do they do?

You choose at least one company RARES Representative to serve as a contact link with the RARES office. This person often operates out of the human resources or benefits area of an organization.

RARES distributes its monthly newsletter and other pertinent information to its membership through the RARES Representative and we ask that this individual then forward it along to everyone in your organization. This individual is key, therefore, to the success of the RARES discount program in your organization. If they do not pass along the monthly newsletters and other information that RARES sends along to promote the discounts it offers, your employees may never know about all of the great benefits available to them.

The RARES Representative also serves as the administrator for the consignment tickets for area car wash, movie tickets, and amusement parks if your company chooses to participate in the consignment ticket program. As your employees may also purchase all of these same tickets directly from RARES (at a slight price point premium), you may elect not to take advantage of this particular RARES benefit but more than 70% of our members do participate in the consignment ticket program.

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How do our employees obtain discounts if we join RARES?

There are three ways your employees may obtain discounts if you decide to join RARES.

First, there are many discounts available to your employees directly where ticket purchases through RARES or your RARES representative is not required. These include such as the RARES discount programs offered by Staubs Cleaners, Geva Theater, the RPO, etc, where on-line coupons or other means of identifying oneself as a RARES member (such as your RARES member ID card) are utilized. Each of our member companies is provided with a unique membership ID# which their employees can utilize to access this information on our web-site behind a secure, password-protected site.

Second, many of our members, however, are most active in taking part in our Consignment Ticket program. This allows your company's designated RARES representative to order tickets on consignment for many attractions in the area (Darien Lake, Regal Cinemas, Delta Sonic, Roseland, etc). They are then distributed to employees through the RARES representative who collects payment directly from individual employees and returns unsold tickets and payment to RARES at the end of the season.

Third, your company may not choose to participate in the consignment ticket program. And even if you do, your employees may always purchase tickets for these same attractions directly from the RARES office. Ordering forms are available online and the RARES office accepts check and money order payments for all discounted tickets. We charge a slight premium, typically only 25 cents per ticket to cover the increased cost of shipping and handling for these small orders. So while participation in the consignment ticket program offers your employees the best benefit in terms of price, if you don not have the time to devote to managing consignment tickets, your employees will still be able to take advantage of all of the discounts RARES offers.

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Can individuals purchase tickets directly from RARES?

Yes. If your company joins RARES, your individual employees may purchase discounted tickets directly from the RARES office. They may do this whether or not you choose to participate in the consignment ticket program. Ordering forms are available online and the RARES office accepts check and money order payments for all discounted tickets. We charge a small amount to cover the cost of shipping and handling for these small orders.

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Once I join, how can I notify my employees of the benefits offered by RARES?

The RARES office has a sample letter (available via e-mail) that we suggest you distribute to all employees.

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I have further questions, how can I contact the RARES office?

Our telephone # is (585) 789-0223
By mail, our office address is: P.O. Box 126, Alton, NY 14413
he primary point of contact is RARES Board.
You may conveniently reach us via e-mail for most questions at raresbod@gmail.com

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How do I obtain discounts from RARES if my company is a member?

There are many discounts available to you directly where ticket purchases through RARES or your RARES representative is not required such as the RARES discount programs offered by Staubs Cleaners, Geva Theater, the RPO, etc. For information on these and all other RARES discounts with specifics on what the discounts entail and how you may access them, return to the home page, and enter your unique Membership ID# into the box on the middle left hand side of the page and hit the enter key. This will refresh the page and you will be presented with a new "discounts" tab which you can then select to see all of the available RARES discounts and visit our Associate Member's Discount Profile Pages and home pages where applicable.

Many of our members, however, are most active in taking part in our Consignment Ticket program. This allows your company's designated RARES representative to order tickets on consignment for many attractions in the area (Darien Lake, Regal Cinemas, Delta Sonic, Roseland, etc). They are then distributed to employees through the RARES representative who collects payment directly from you and returns unsold tickets and payment to RARES at the end of the season. Check with your company's RARES Representative to see if your company participates in the consignment ticket program. If you do not know the name of your company's RARES Representative, contact RARES at raresbod@gmail.com and we'll put you in touch.

If your company does not participate in the consignment ticket program, or even if they do, you may always purchase tickets for these same attractions from RARES directly. Once you have entered your Membership ID# as described above, you will also note that there is a tab for "order forms." Clicking on that tab will take you to a page where you can download an order form to order cinema, car wash, or amusement park tickets directly from the RARES office.

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How do I order tickets as an individual?

Just click on the order tab at the top of any page. You may order by mail (payment by check or money order), online (payment by credit card), or request pickup of tickets (payment by cash, check, or money order only).

Payment must accompany your order form to the RARES office. Payment is accepted in the form of check or money order made payable to RARES or you may order online.. We appreciate you letting us know in advance of any large orders so that we can ensure we have appropriate stock on hand to meet the demand - feel free to call us in advance at (585) 789-0223.

If you order online we try and ship all orders received prior to 3 pm the same day we receive them. Thus, you may receive the tickets the next day if ordering locally, 2-3 days later if you're outside of the Rochester area.

If you're ordering by mail, we once again try and fill ticket requests the same day or no later than the next day (sometimes the mail arrives late). Please plan appropriately for the time it may take mail to reach us as well as for it to be returned to you. Local mail usually reaches us the next day.

For individuals who are looking for last minute tickets, we are often open after hours, weekends, and on holidays. We STRONGLY suggest that you e-mail your last minute request for tickets (if you call, we'll simply tell you to e-mail us anyway). If we're able to fill your ticket request (and 90% of the time we are), we'll e-mail you back pickup instructions. Keep in mind that standard shipping and handling ($1 to $2.50 per order depending upon the dollar amount of the order) applies regardless of whether you pick up your tickets at our office or whether you order via the US mail.

Our office is located conveniently. We'll provide pickup instructions and how you can deposit payment. Tickets are then available for pickup at ANY TIME (and we do mean at any time) according to the directions we will provide you. We do NOT offer pickup service to anyone who has not contacted us previously via e-mail. We cannot guarantee when we will be in the office and thus cannot fulfill those requests.

Our aim is to make this as convenient as possible for all of our members and we know that your plans often change at the last minute.

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Can I pick up my tickets at the RARES office?

For individual RARES members who are looking for last minute tickets, we are often open after hours, weekends, and on holidays. Regardless, we can make arrangements for you to pick up tickets with appropriate advance notice. Any requests made for last minute pickup of tickets MUST be made via e-mail. Telephone requests cannot be honored.

Time permitting, we are always happy to accommodate our members (and members only) who have last minute change in plans (and 95% of the time we are able to do so). Yes, we do provide tickets on weekends - we just cannot guarantee that we will always be available if you e-mail us on Saturday morning (shame on you for the last minute planning), but we will try if we're in. In many instances, we may be able to arrange for pick up of tickets at our office.

If you wish to do this:

  1. Please send us an e-mail to raresbod@gmail.com with - DO NOT CALL (we only provide directions via e-mail for security reasons)
  2. Your name
  3. Home address
  4. Home telephone # (and work, if applicable but always home)
  5. VERY IMPORTANT: The name of the company you work for.

We'll e-mail you back with an invoice and instructions on how to pick up the tickets. You can pick up the tickets during the day or before or after normal office hours - including weekends and holidays where applicable so yes, you often can obtain tickets for a holiday weekend or a Sunday as late as the day before or even the morning of that same day. Our aim is to make this as convenient as possible for all of our members and we know that your plans often change at the last minute.

This courtesy is extended to RARES members only. If you are not a RARES member, we suggest you learn more about RARES at our membership page.

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Can I pay by credit card?

Yes you may order online, but please read the following.

To provide our members the greatest ease in payment options, RARES accepts payments by credit card, check, money order, and/or cash.

Agencies that process our credit card payments (RARES uses PayPal), charge us a fee which equates to a percentage of each transaction plus a standard per transaction fee.

As RARES is a not-for-profit association and passes along its savings on most items to our members at cost without any mark-up, we must pass along these credit card processing costs to our membership. You can think of it as a convenience factor.

When you go to pay by credit card, you'll notice in addition to the standard shipping and handling charges a 3.5 to 5% fee . This represents the costs RARES incurs in processing your payment via credit card. Remember, we offer tickets to our members at cost. We have to recover these credit card fees in order to break even.

If you would like to avoid this cost, we encourage you to order via the mail and make your payment by check or money order.

We thank you in advance for your patience and cooperation.

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How long will it take for me to obtain my tickets?

In most cases, if the tickets are in stock you will receive your tickets in two to four business days. Of course this depends on ticket quantities and number of ticket orders that arrived the same day. It is always best to e-mail the RARES office after sending an order to make sure it was received and to check on the status of delivery.

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What are your hours of operation?

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I'm new as my company's RARES Representative, how can I find out more?

You've taken the correct first step, in turning to the questions offered on this page. We encourage you to first read the list of frequently asked questions geared toward company RARES Representatives and explore this web-site. We then encourage you to contact the RARES office and update them on your contact information.

The RARES office has other material available that will quickly bring you up to speed on RARES, it's policies and procedures, and the association's benefits. We also have material available for you to introduce or reintroduce RARES to your employees. With turnover and all of the distractions in today's workplace, we recommend that company's reappraise their employees of the benefits of RARES on a regular basis.

For starters, enter your membership ID # on the RARES homepage. Select the RARES Reps tab from the top menu bar. On the Membership page, you'll find a number of documents to help further explain RARES benefits to both you and your employees.

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How do I let me employees know about the benefits offered by RARES?

The RARES office has a sample letter (available via e-mail) that we suggest you distribute to all employees.

The letter provides an introductory overview of the RARES program and how to access discount and benefit information. The letter can be found on the downloads page which is available to you after you enter in your membership ID# on the home page and enter the restricted portion of this site.

If you want something quick and simple, there is a 2-page document available to all members that outlines where the ID card can be presented for a discount and when something else must take place first (such as utilizing online codes, etc.). You'll note our logo in the pinkish box at the top left hand corner of each page. Just click on it for the document to load.

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May my company participate in both the individual ticket purchase program and the consignment ticket program?

Yes! First, there are many discounts available to your employees directly where ticket purchases through RARES or your RARES representative is not required. These include such as the RARES discount programs offered by Staubs Cleaners, Geva Theater, the RPO, etc, where on-line coupons or other means of identifying oneself as a RARES member are utilized. Each of our member companies is provided with a unique membership ID# which their employees can utilize to access this information on our web-site behind a secure, password-protected site.

Second, many of our members, however, are most active in taking part in our Consignment Ticket program. This allows you as your company's designated RARES representative to order tickets on consignment for many attractions in the area (Darien Lake, Regal Cinemas, Delta Sonic, Roseland, etc). You in turn distribute them to your employees and return unsold tickets and payment to RARES at the end of the season on Summer attractions and on an ongoing basis for car wash and movie theater tickets.

Third, you may not choose to participate in the consignment ticket program. And even if you do, your employees may always purchase tickets for these same attractions directly from the RARES office. Ordering forms are available online and the RARES office accepts check and money order payments for all discounted tickets. We levy a small charget o cover the increased cost of shipping and handling for these small orders. So while participation in the consignment ticket program offers your employees the best benefit in terms of price, if you don not have the time to devote to managing consignment tickets, your employees will still be able to take advantage of all of the discounts RARES offers. And even if you do participate, you know that your employees can always obtain tickets directly from RARES if you are unavailable.

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How do I order tickets (either consignment or pre-paid)?

For individuals, just click on the order button at the top of any page. You must first be signed-in with your ID # before accessing this page.

RARES Reps should select the Membership button to order their tickets on consignment (use the same button to order tickets if you're looking to pay at the time of order or be invoiced for them).

As a RARES Representative, you should always utilize the Consignment Ticket Order Form, even if you are pre-paying for tickets, as the prices offered to our RARES Representatives does not reflect a shipping and handling charge.

You may either fax or e-mail back the consignment ticket order form to the RARES office. And while we appreciate you letting us know of any large orders in advance, we always require a Consignment Ticket Order Form with each order as this is a contract that you are entering into with RARES to receive tickets on consignment and later return unsold tickets and pay for those sold. For this reason, we can not take an order over the telephone - we require written documentation for every transaction.

If you are pre-paying your transaction or if you are ordering more than the # of tickets available on consignment and have to pre-pay for the tickets you are requesting, the RARES office must have payment before tickets will be sent. We encourage you to fax or e-mail the form to us prior to payment being sent but ask that you please recognize that tickets will not be forwarded until payment is received by the RARES office.

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Are there a maximum number of tickets we can order on consignment?

Yes, in some cases there are a maximum number of tickets available on consignment due to limitations placed upon us by our vendors. The consignment order contract does reflect those quantities when applied. There are however no minimums on any of the tickets. You can order as many pre-pay tickets as you would like. Please give yourself one-two weeks for large orders.

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Why is there a maximum?

Some of our vendors, including many of the Summer Amusement Park attractions, provide consignment tickets to us at no charge to distribute to our members and for these tickets we can normally distribute any quantity requested by our members. At the end of the season, tickets that have been sold are paid for. In other cases, the RARES office has to purchase selected tickets in advance in order to pass the discount on to you. This advance of paid tickets to our membership necessitates RARES limiting our risk with any one member.

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How do I know what the shipping and handling fee is for tickets?

For RARES Representatives, the ticket price on the order contract is the only price you will pay. There is NO shipping and handling fee assessed on orders forwarded to designated RARES Representatives. There is no sales tax either. For individual orders, there are separate shipping and handling fees for tickets ordered by mail, online via credit card, and for pick up. These shipping charges vary between $1 and $2.50 depending upon the dollar amount of the order. Shipping fees may be larger for individuals ordering online. As we offer tickets to our membership at cost, our online system is set up to recover the per transaction fees and credit card fees assessed to us by our credit card processor so your shipping and handling fees will be greater if you choose to use the convenience of a credit card for payment.

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Why do I sometimes only receive a portion of my tickets ordered?

The RARES office only receives a limited number of tickets on consignment from our vendors, and in some cases we have to purchase the tickets in order to pass the discount to our members. In order for all our participants to have a quantity of tickets available for their employees, we may have to limit the number of tickets initially sent to you. For example, companies who order 50 or more summer tickets on consignment may only receive 25. That does not mean the company can not get an additional number of tickets if needed. They need only to call the RARES office and let us know that your initial request was for 50 and that you need the additional 25. You won’t have to re-send an order form. We will have your original copy on file.

In some cases the RARES office may not have the quantity of tickets requested. In this case, we will fill what portion of the order we can, and then re-send the remaining tickets as soon as they arrive.

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How long can we keep tickets on consignment?

We request that Delta Sonic and Regal theater tickets be sent back every quarter (three months) OR that you regularly notify us of your sales and what you still have in stock. We provide you with sample forms and reports to accomplish this.

This is important because of the financial undertaking the office has incurred in sending these tickets to you. If you can not sell them after a reasonable length of time, we ask that you return them so we can try to distribute them to another General Member. Summer tickets may be kept for the summer season and are generally due back in late September or October - depending upon the venue. Check your consignment order contract for specific return dates.

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Do we have to send the unsold tickets back in registered mail?

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How long will it take for me to get my tickets?

It is advised that you have some sort of record of this transaction. If any are lost in the mail, you will be responsible for the value of the tickets. Whether you wish to spend the money to send the tickets back registered mail is up to you. The RARES office does NOT ship tickets registered mail.

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What should I do if the information on the invoice and the actual ticket order is not correct?

If you find that the ticket numbers don’t match or the quantity is not correct, e-mail (preferred) or call the RARES office immediately so we can rectify the problem and update our records.

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Can my employees order tickets online?

Yes. Employees may order tickets online through the RARES web store in addition to ordering through the mail. Please let your employees know that if they purchase tickets online, there is an additional shipping and handling charge attached to each order which represents that percentage of the transaction that we must recoup from the credit card charges levied against RARES.

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What are the RARES office's hours of operation?

Our normal hours of operation are 9 am to 3 pm, Monday thru Friday.

For individuals who are looking for last minute tickets, we are often open after hours, weekends, and on holidays. We STRONGLY suggest that you e-mail your last minute request for tickets (if you call, we'll simply tell you to e-mail us anyway). If we're able to fill your ticket request (and 90% of the time we are), we'll e-mail you back pickup instructions.

We'll provide pickup instructions and how you can deposit payment. Tickets are then available for pickup at ANY TIME (and we do mean at any time) according to the directions we will provide you BUT you must e-mail for pickup information. For security reasons, we only provide directions and pickup instructions via e-mail and not over the telephone.

Our aim is to make this as convenient as possible for all of our members and we know that your plans often change at the last minute.

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