Canadian operator Cineplex has joined its American counterparts in introducing a surcharge for the convenience of booking movies online.
With the exhibition business facing a slow recovery from the pandemic, Cineplex customers will be charged a $1.50 reservation fee when purchasing movie tickets using the mobile app or website of the company. The new online booking fees will not apply to tickets purchased at theater box offices, ticketing kiosks, or for food and beverage purchases.
“We are deeply committed to keeping cinema as affordable as possible, while seeking to continue to improve the experience for our customers. As one of Canada’s leading entertainment and media companies, we need to invest more and evolve our digital infrastructure. So we have implemented a $1.50 reservation fee for ticket purchases made online and on our mobile app,” Cineplex spokeswoman Sarah Van Lange said. The Hollywood Reporter Wednesday in a statement.
Cineplex cites the prevalence of online booking fees elsewhere in the global industry and earlier for other paid entertainment like concerts, live theater and sporting events.
Members of Cineplex’s Scene+ loyalty program will pay a $1.00 fee per ticket when reserving a ticket online, and the company’s CineClub subscription movie ticket program will waive the reservation fee for his members.
In the United States, chains like AMC Theaters already have surcharges on online movie purchases, in part to encourage customers to sign up for subscription ticket programs.
In March, AMC Theaters also introduced peak prices and fees in North America – ranging from $1 to $1.50 – for tickets to see The Batmanwith Robert Pattinson.