AMC Will Base Ticket Prices Depending on Seat Location in Theatres

AMC Theatres is moving its prices to a new model that will change the cost of movie tickets depending on a viewer's seat location inside the theater.

The AMC theater near Columbus Avenue is viewed on October 10, 2015 in Chicago
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Image via Getty/George Rose

The AMC theater near Columbus Avenue is viewed on October 10, 2015 in Chicago

AMC Theatres is altering its prices to a new model that will change the cost of movie tickets depending on a viewer’s seat location, Variety reports.

The movie theater chain, which is the biggest in the country, is starting to roll out its new pricing initiative entitled Sightline at AMC. The move will see the price of tickets change depending on the location within the auditorium, a move similar to how many music venues, sporting events, and Broadway shows charge for tickets. The idea is that seats in the front row will cost lower, while the ones in the center will be higher. 

“Sightline at AMC more closely aligns AMC’s seat pricing approach to that of many other entertainment venues, offering experienced-based pricing and another way for moviegoers to find value at the movies,” said AMC Theatres executive VP and CMO Eliot Hamlisch. “While every seat at AMC delivers an amazing moviegoing experience, we know there are some moviegoers who prioritize their specific seat and others who prioritize value moviegoing. Sightline at AMC accommodates both sentiments to help ensure that our guests have more control over their experience, so that every trip to an AMC is a great one.”

AMC will start rolling out the initiative on Friday (Feb. 10) at locations in New York, Chicago, and Kansas City. The plan is to roll out the pricing to every location across the country and three tiers of pricing, with Standard Sightline described as “seats that are the most common in auditoriums and are available for the traditional cost of a ticket.”

The chain described Value Sightline, the cheapest of the three options, as “seats in the front row of the auditorium, as well as select ADA seats in each auditorium, and are available at a lower price than standard sightline seats.” The budget pricing option is only available to members of AMC Stubs, although this will be included in its free membership option, too.

The final option is Preferred Sightline, which promises “seats in the middle of the auditorium and are priced at a premium to standard sightline seats.” AMC Stubs members on the A-List tier can reserve the premium tier at no additional cost.

Theaters that utilize Sightline at AMC will only implement the pricing on showtimes after 4 p.m., and Discount Tuesdays tickets will remain $5 regardless of seating location.

Screen veteran Elijah Wood was one of many to take to Twitter and criticize the move, writing, “The movie theater is and always has been a sacred democratic space for all and this new initiative by @AMCTheatres would essentially penalize people for lower income and reward for higher income.”

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