I recently moved up to Christchurch, and loving going to the movies, I got a Hoyts Reward Card. Â Christchurch Â – or the bits I’m local to by bike – has 4 cinemas, 3 Hoyts multiplexes and Alice’s Cinematique (a 35 seat arthouse I haven’t been to yet, but am dying to). Â The Hoyts are your normal multiplexes, run by teenagers than run from freindly to surly, expensive snacks (5.00 bottles of water), badly soundproofed screens. Â Normal suburban stuff.
For ten bucks you can get a reward card, and for that a free ticket. Â That makes it financially viable. Â From then on there is the promise of cheap tickets to selected films, and a points system. Â Points are awarded on a price per purchase scheme, 10 points per dollar. Â They are then redeemed at anÂ outrageousÂ markup – a couple of sodas costs 1890 points. Â I’d love to tell you what a ticket to the films cost, but their website is broken and won’t tell me.
I’ll continue to use it, but the chances of getting enough points for a ticket (and I go to the movies once a week or so) before the points expire in 24 months are kinda small.
The return for Hoyts for me using it are great: they can profile my cinema going and snack buying. Â The amount of effort they expend trying to get me to link to facebook is extraordinary, but what do I get for the effort of publicising their business? Â Nothing.
The last benefit they provide are cheap tickets. Â So far, the offer for the $10 tickets are for movies they are desperately trying to make some return on. Â For a typical Hoyts audience that, I suspect, means the kinds of movies I’m interested in occasionally. Â Trying to fill up screen 6, or at least, get A warm body in there. (I always seem to end up in screen 6). Â There may be some utility in this for me.
In summary, the rewards scheme is a bunch of screaming advertising copy with little real benefit for me. Â I wrote to Rialto and asked if they were going to open a cinema in Christchurch, but they have no plans. Â Sad.