Hoyts are worse than Ticketmaster, I swear. (For non-Aussies, Hoyts is the major movie theater chain in Sydney.) On Wednesday I saw in the newspaper that Return of the King tickets were going on sale the next day. I am a big nerd and I want to go to the first possible showing. Accordingly, yesterday I headed over to the Broadway to procure four tickets for the 9:30 am premiere on Boxing Day. First off, there weren’t any signs or posters about the ticket sale. I was confused. I figured they’d have something. So I waited in line and when I got up to the counter I asked the guy, “Are you selling Return of the King tickets today?” And he’s like, “Yeah, uh, I guess so.” Ooookay. So I pull out a fifty and wait for him to add it up. “That’ll be $61.20,” he says. I choke. I dig for more money. As I’m putting the tickets away, I hear the next couple behind me buying two tickets for a show about to start… and their total is less than $30. Something doesn’t jibe. I look down at the tickets in my hand and note that the $15.30 price includes sales tax and “public holiday surcharge”. What? They’re actually charging me extra to come in on what will probably be their biggest day of the year. What, do they think they’re doing us a big favor by being open that day? Snookums reckons it’s because they have to pay their employees extra to work over Christmas, but I think that’s bull. The cinema should suck up that cost since they’re easily going to make it up with all the extra refreshments they’ll sell that day. Money-grubbing bastards!


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  1. That is foul. I’m fed up with ‘surchrges.’ When Linda was visiting she went to see a movie on Saturday b/c I had to work. She got there and found out that there were no matinee prices on weekends or holidays. What? And I’m buying from Ticketmaster right now (unless I can find something – strike that – anything else), and just stared at the $7.90 ‘convenience’ charge. That obviously doesn’t include any sort of speedy shipping, just a regular old have my tickets sometime before the day of the show – which is perfectly fine. Grrr, it just irritates me.

  2. Yeah, I got used to that matinee thing in London. They were even bigger bastards there. They’d give a student concession but only before 6:00… when the students are all in class!

  3. Tell me about it. Hoyts, Village and the like are pure evil. You should totally seek out some of the cool independent cinemas who generally charge less – there are some absolutely charming ones in Melbourne and I’m sure it would be the same in Sydney. Though I guess they generally screen movies a week or two later than the Evil Big Ones, so it would kind of defeat the purpose here 🙂

  4. oh man, you and my hubby should form an anti-Hoyts club. He hates them. He gets really annoyed that they have no list of what everything costs at the candy counter. I wonder if Return is going to play at the Dendy….

  5. I try to avoid Hoyts whenever possible, but it’s hard given that they’re pretty much the only option for big first-run movies here. I’m a Dendy member but I don’t think ROTK is playing there. The last newsletter doesn’t mention it in their Christmas schedule. Poodoo.

    (I do have one Dendy complaint though – the Newtown one only ever has the WEIRDEST choc top flavors. Like, I generally just want vanilla, but instead they’ll only have boysenberry or Jaffa or something weird like that.)

  6. I’m not sure how it works in Austrailia, but when I worked for a movie theatre in high school, most of the ticket prices went to the movie distribution companie and the concession prices actually payed for the individual theatres (so that’s what would pay the employee salaries and why it costs a fortune for those sodas and snacks). We pay for Bennifer’s pink rock with those inflated ticket prices. 😉

  7. Wow, I’m with you on the Hoyts hate — up until a couple months ago, they had a complete monopoly on the theaters in New Hampshire. It was ridiculous, but more because of the poor service than the prices. (I was unable to see Adaptation one night because the bulb broke in that projector and they had no replacements.)

    I had no idea they were multi-national. . .

  8. i actually quite like the dendy weird choc bomb flavours. although i almost died when one and a bottle of water set me back $9!

  9. I know, you basically have to get a loan from the bank if you want to buy something to eat. Okay, that’s my last bitchy rant on this one!

  10. hello:) i actually work for hoyts in perth, ive been with the company for five years. i know it is expensive but what tricia wrote above is correct. hoyts makes there money only really from the candy bar. do you have any idea how expensive it is to run one movie?? even if there is only one person in the theatre? as for poor service, i totally agree. theres too many 15 year olds with jobs at the company.

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