Are high movie prices keeping NJ residents out of theaters?
People are making fewer trips to the movies, according to recent data, and it’s probably due to alarmingly high prices.
It’s no secret that the cost of seeing a film in an actual movie theater has shot up over the years, along with the price of concessions like popcorn and soda. In fact, a tab approaching $100 is not out of the ordinary for a family of four or five who attend a primetime showing.
“The last time I went to the movies was probably like two-and-a-half years ago,” said Christina Stranaghan of Millville. “It’s too expensive.”
She’s thankful her kids are old enough to see a movie on their own, and spend their own money while doing it.
Mays Landing resident Tracy Torres said her family can’t make trips to the movies because the prices are “outrageous,” no matter how bad her kids are itching to see Minions or The Good Dinosaur.
“We’ll wait until it comes out on DVD,” Torres said.
Patience is key for Janet Margusity of Medford. Instead of paying full price when the movie is released, she’ll wait until the film is placed online to rent or buy.
“I stream movies over my Amazon Fire, and I’m able to get it for $3.99 or $4.99,” she said. “For me, it’s just so much nicer sitting in my own living room.”
According to data from the National Association of Theatre Owners, the average price of a U.S. ticket price has risen each year since 1994.
The 2014 average was $8.17. That actually seems pretty low, but keep in mind these numbers factor in matinee prices as well. A movie that costs less than $6 before noon can run you more than $12 in the evening hours.
The association registered 1.27 billion visits to U.S. and Canada theaters in 2014, compared 1.34 billion in 2012 and 1.36 billion in 2012. Box office grosses experienced a dip from 2013 to 2014 as well.