The Perfect Time for a Surcharge
Cineplex will add $1.50 to the cost of every ticket purchased online, and I think it's a brilliant business move.
Sure, $1.50 per ticket represents an 11.5% surcharge (pre-tax) on the cost of a $12.99 regular-priced adult ticket...
... but most people have loads of extra money to spend these days, right?
Okay, consumers buying their tickets digitally is unquestionably more cost-effective for Cineplex compared to having more staff on-site to sell tickets in person...
... but why wouldn't consumers be willing to pay more for the privilege of doing business online? After all, that's the way it works with online shopping and online banking, right?
It's not like forcing customers who aren't willing to pay the surcharge to line up for their tickets could create a worse theatre-going experience...
... or that "experience" is the only thing that justifies the sky-high premium of going to the theatre in the first place.
It's certainly not like people have broken their habit of going to the movies regularly over the past two years and the company needs to be worried about doing anything to keep people from returning, especially given theatrical windows have shortened and most films are now available to be viewed at home less than two months after their theatrical debut.
But most importantly...
... it's not like people have any other options when it comes to watching movies, right?
(Well, aside from Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, Apple TV+, Paramount+, Crave, Hayu, or any of those "other" streaming apps and websites, obviously.)
To be honest, I'm surprised Cineplex didn't go even further with introducing additional usage fees because so much opportunity exists!
How about an Armrest Surcharge! (That's $1.50 per armrest, not $1.50 per chair, to be clear.)
A Popcorn-handling fee! (Hey, they hand it to you, don't they?)
A large-screen, big-sound film premium! (Wait, never mind... this one already exists.)
Still... brilliant, I tell you.
I'm just glad Cineplex’s chief executive officer, Ellis Jacob, has stated there are no plans to raise the cost of a movie ticket.
Because if that were to happen, going to the movies could really get expensive.