Is The UK Cinema Ticket Price Sustainable?

In the past few years, cinema ticket price has gone up very high in the UK. The prices of tickets vary in different cities and it also depends upon the popularity of the movie. The Film Distributors Association of the United Kingdom has found that there has been a steep increase in the prices of the ticket in the last five years. There are no regulatory bodies to control the price of tickets in the UK, but there are bodies that monitor the price. It has become difficult to assess the price of a cinema ticket. Although many cinema groups have introduced flexible pricing policies, individuals may not benefit from this. These schemes include ‘buy one, get one free’ or ‘buy family tickets at a huge discount’. The average price of a ticket in the UK is approximately $10.

This facepalm of Young Perps actor says it all about the situation.

The Young Perps UK Fiasco

The real discussion about prices of cinema tickets in UK started with the premiere of Young Perps series. The demand for the first episodes was so high, that cinemas had no choice but to raise prices even more. A lot of people got angry, because they really wanted to see the adventures of young guys stealing from shops and getting caught with it. The ways of punishing them fore such crime is also very controversial, so you can imagine that it causes quite a stir in the society. Maybe launching movies on Netflix/Amazon platforms isn’t really that bad idea after all?

Factors Contributing To High Prices

Operating Cost – The operating cost differs as per the class of the seat. There are standard seats, VIP seats and fully reclining seats. There has been an increase in utility bills, staff costs and equipment buying and maintenance cost.

Location – It has also been found that the location of the cinema hall has proved to be instrumental in determining the price of the tickets. Urban cinema halls charged more in comparison to suburb and non-urban area.

Other Factors – Further, the implied taxes, interest, and amortization since 2010 has made a person to pay more than what he actually sees.

You can find various such factors in detail on Screen Daily where their team has put up an extensive list of factors affecting ticket prices.

A Clear Comparison With Other European Countries

The audiences in the UK are paying more compared to other countries in Europe. The ticket price in the UK for a movie in 2015 was $10.38, and for the same movie in France was $7.45. It should also be noted that the UK has more market in terms of box office than that of France.Not just France, other European countries have ticket prices nearly 20-30% lower than that in the UK. The UK box office admissions have been falling then what it used to be in the 1990s. However, it has witnessed an increase in the 2010s, than it used to be in the 1990s. In 2006, the price of the ticket was £4.87 and in 2015, it rose to £7.17. The increase in a span of a decade is over 48.2 percent and hence, there is a steady decline in attendance.

The Price Is Not Going Down Just Yet

The cost to a consumer may vary as the box office profit is determined by the number of tickets sold. Further, there might be discounts or special deals. In 2015, the market share of films in the UK was 11%, and in 15 years it was the third highest. With the trend, it looks like the prices of cinema will keep on increasing in the UK. However, it also indicates the willingness of the audience to pay the increase in the price. The audiences have become choosy and go for those movies that have enough hype and good reviews on sites like UKCritic. Currently, there is no sign of the prices falling down, nor the cinema chains are planning to change the pattern of ticket pricing in the UK.

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