Sunday, December 13, 2009

Movie Experience

Ideas/thoughts based on what I noticed at multiplexes in Bangalore.

1. First and foremost I was recently very pissed off to learn that when you buy a ticket online using your debit card you cannot print tickets at kiosk!!! Why not??
I had to wait in queue for long to collect tickets. Why can't one print tickets(with bar code) directly based on the booking(at your desk) and walk into a theatre right away?

2. There is a large chunk of movie goers who buy popcorn/drink at the theatre before or during the break. So why not add the facility to buy the coupons of the same while or immediately after booking the tickets(online). At least it will reduce the queue at the snacks counter and increase customers movie experience.

3. Tatkal Quota for Booking: Theatres can introduce the concept of tatkal booking(prevalent and popular in railway bookings) into movie tickets sector. Tatkal tickets could be available on or a day prior to the show with a higher price tag. Of course very minor amount is returned upon cancellation(next point)!

4. Movie Cancellation

I wonder why don't we have movie ticket cancellation option. Lot of us book tickets in advance for convenience or to ensure we have tickets. But we also restrain ourselves from booking tickets when a plan is not concrete because there is no cancellation option. There are number of times when we could have gone for a movie but are not sure if one of them in the group is going to complete his/her work on time. Also we might have some unplanned meetings which come up. So, I think cancellation feature in movies would help many movie goers.

Why should the multiplex or single screen theatre owners provide this facility to the customers?

Positives:
* Revenue on every cancelled ticket. Can have different cancellation charges based on when the ticket is being cancelled.(Similar to what, one of the best online bus booking providers, redbus.in provides for their ticket cancellations)
* Helps allocate tickets to the customer who actually can/wants to see the movie. Provides better customer convenience/experience especially in today's world where things change every second.

Negatives(really ?? ):
* If the movie reviews are not good then customers can tend to cancel their tickets.
We can overcome this partially by using a feature which the flight-travel booking sites provide, refundable and non-refundable tickets. So non-refundable tickets will be sold at lower price but cannot be cancelled. Also I personally believe if the movie reviews are bad some people still see it and others would have anyway waited for the reviews before booking tickets in current scenario(where we can book tickets only 2 days in advance). At least, now multiplex can get cancellation charges from customer(confused/unsure) who might change mind based on reviews and at that same time keep them happy.

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