Want your family cinema trips to end happily ever after? Move to Cardiff
- A trip to the flicks can cost 300% more depending on where you live –
A new study by money-saving website Voucherbox.co.uk has revealed that your post code might have a bigger impact on a cinema experience than first thought, with a trip to your local cinema sometimes costing four times as much as it does in other areas!
This could be a particularly painful read for any parents from London of Manchester, many of which probably understand the costly struggle of fulfilling your children’s insatiable hunger for the seemingly never-ending Disney princess/robot/superhero craze. Even more so for any of those parents planning to brave the costs of a cinema birthday party.
The study, which looked at prices across the Vue, Odeon and Cineworld chains, compared the cost of a standard ticket for upcoming blockbuster X-Men: Apocalypse on the same day and time in nine cities around the UK*.
Parents who regular the Vue in Cardiff Stadium Plaza are certainly more likely to live happily ever after, with the cheapest adult tickets in the country at £4. Patrons of Leicester Square’s London West End Cinema, on the other hand, might be screaming in horror after finding out that the same ticket will cost them almost 300% more at £15.99. But we can’t just blame this on those pesky Londoners and their love for price inflation, Manchester also comes out as the most expensive place to purchase an adult ticket at £12.99, 200% more than in the Welsh capital.
Out of the chains, Vue had the biggest disparity between the cheapest and most expensive cinemas (300%), Odeon showing a 127% increase between it’s locations and Cineworld appearing to be the best value for customers, with ‘only’ a 42% difference between its most expensive cinema in London (£13.60) and it’s cheapest in Birmingham (£9.60).
“But Leighanne!” I hear you scream, brandishing a children’s ticket tightly in one hand and your old student card in the other. “Surely these are ways of avoiding this tragedy!” Well, whilst it is possible to catch a good deal in some locations with a student, child or senior ticket, others don’t offer any discount at all.
A student ticket at the Cineworld in Cardiff is 62% cheaper than an adult ticket, whilst the already cheap Vue in Cardiff is the same price regardless of the variety of ticket you purchase. In what can be considered a confusing pricing structure for consumers, London Tottenham Court Road offers one of the more expensive adult tickets at £15, yet is the cheaper of the other tickets priced at £8.50.
Shane Forster, Voucherbox.co.uk UK Country Manager, voiced his disapproval on the matter, “The cinema is no longer regarded as a cheap evening out. Whilst some variation in costs across the UK in costs is to be expected consumers don’t expect a 300% increase – this is just not comparative to the cost of living.”
But this doesn’t mean that you can’t try your best in your area to get the most out of your money. When looking at the costs within the same location, the results may come as a surprise to many. An adult ticket in Cardiff can see an increase of 143%, while you can expect a 63% increase within Bristol and 61% in Edinburgh. In London, a five-minute walk (from Covent Garden to Leicester Square) can increase the cost of a ticket by 39%! A significant increase when purchasing multiple tickets for the family.
As a family, there are sometimes considerable cost savings to be made. Calculating the collective admission cost of two adults and two children, the family ticket at Vue Leicester Square will save you £6.40, whereas the Odeon Leicester Square ticket will save you an amazing £17.
In the end, the key to saving money is to check before you head out of the door, and see if there are any deals to be had by purchasing tickets beforehand online, bearing in mind booking fees and additional expense when you arrive, such as snacks, 3D viewings and seat upgrades.