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August 6, 2018

MoviePass: Everything you need to know

by John_A

Here’s your one-stop-shop for all the MoviePass news, controversies, and more.

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Unless you’ve been living under a rock lately, there’s a good chance you’ve heard a thing or two about MoviePass. Although the company was founded way back in 2011, it’s picked up a lot of steam over the past year or so with its too-good-to-be-true offer of allowing you to see one movie per day for just $9.95/month.

MoviePass has become one of the most disruptive companies of recent memory, and whether you’re looking for the latest controversies or want to learn more about the service before you sign up, you’ve come to the right place.

Without further ado, this is everything you need to know about MoviePass!

The latest MoviePass news

August 6, 2018 — The new MoviePass plan will remain at $9.95/month but limit subscribers to 3 movies per month

Just about a week after MoviePass announced that it was raising its monthly subscription cost to $14.95/month, the company has since issued another press release to outline a tweaked version of its business model that’ll hopefully allow for better sustainability.

Starting on August 15, 2018, MoviePass’s new plan will officially go into effect. It’ll still cost $9.95/month as usual, but instead of subscribers being able to see up to one new movie per day, they’ll be limited to just 3 movies each month. The plan will “include many major studio first-run films”, and after you see your 3 movies, you’ll be able to get up to a $5 discount on additional tickets you purchase through the app.

Additionally, subscribers of the new plan won’t have to deal with the controversial Peak Pricing or the Ticket Verification system that requires you to take a photo of your ticket before you can see another movie.

If you’re currently subscribed to any of the exisitng monthly or yearly plans, you won’t be transitioned to the new model until your plan is up for renewal. In other words, you’ll still be able to see one movie per day but will have to put up with Peak Pricing, Ticket Verification, and being limited from seeing new releases.

July 31, 2018 —MoviePass is raising its price to $14.95/month, First Run Movies will be limited in availability for the first two weeks

In an official press release issued by MoviePass’s parent company Helios & Matheson, a few big changes were announced as an effort for MoviePass to cut its cash burn by 60%

Perhaps the biggest change is with the service’s cost. The iconic $9.95/month plan that allows you to see one new movie per day will be increased to $14.95/month within the next 30 days. Even with the higher monthly rate, Peak Pricing isn’t going anywhere.

It was also confirmed that “First Run Movies opening on 1,000+ Screens” will see limited availability during their first two weeks of release unless the studio makes a promotional deal with MoviePass. From the way the press release reads, that sounds like yet another limitation on top of the restrictions we heard about yesterday for movies like The Meg and Christopher Robin.

All the important details

There are two plans to choose from

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Right now, you’ve got two options to choose from if you want to get MoviePass — MoviePass and MoviePass Unlimited.

The former of those two costs $7.95/month and lets you see three movies per month.

While it’s nice that MoviePass has this available if you want to save a couple bucks each month, I’d recommend going all the way with MoviePass Unlimited. For $9.95/month, you can watch one new movie per day in theaters every single day.

Both plans are billed monthly and can be canceled at any time.

See at MoviePass

E-ticketing makes everything easier

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MoviePass is regularly partnering with more and more theater chains to support e-ticketing, and if you happen to live near one that offers this, you’re in for a real treat.

For theaters that don’t support e-ticketing, using MoviePass requires you to be within 100 yards of the theater you’re going to, check-in to the showtime on your phone, and then swipe your card to get your ticket. If the showing happens to sell out by the time you get to the theater, you can either choose another movie or call it a night.

However, if there’s a theater near you that does support e-ticketing, the process is way simpler. Once you find the showtime you want to go to, a “Get E-Ticket” button will pop up instead of the “Check In” one.

E-tickets can’t be canceled once you buy them, but they do have the added benefit of allowing you buy them wherever you are. Also, if you’re theater supports e-ticketing and reserved seating, you can even choose your seat right from the MoviePass app! Once you get to the theater, just type in the redemption code for your e-ticket or scan the QR code.

Right now, e-ticketing with MoviePass works at Goodrich Quality Theaters, Studio Movie Grill, and MJR Theaters.

Only 2D movies are supported, at least for now

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As it currently stands, you can only use your MoviePass to watch regular 2D movies. In the near future, however, that will soon be changing.

By Labor Day (September 3), MoviePass will allow you to pay an upgrade fee to see RealD 3D, IMAX 2D, 3D, and other Premium Large Format movies.

That fee will range between $2 – $5 depending on what kind of premium show you’re seeing.

You can’t rewatch movies

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As good of a deal as MoiePass is, it’s not without a few limits here and there — the first of which is the fact that you can’t rewatch movies.

MoviePass experimented with letting people rewatch the same movie over and over again for a few months but eventually decided to revoke the right to prevent ticket-scalping and other misuses of the service.

It would certainly be nice to have the option of seeing a movie again that you particularly like, but don’t expect this to come back anytime soon.

You can still benefit from your theater’s loyalty program

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If your theater has a loyalty program that rewards you with points for buying tickets and concessions, you can link it up to your MoviePass account and still get rewarded for the tickets you “buy” with your MoviePass subscription.

As it currently stands, you can link loyalty programs from Goodrich Quality Theaters, D Place Entertainment, and Starlight Cinemas.

It’s an admittedly small list right now, but it’s one that should only grow more and more as time goes on.

What’s the deal with Peak Pricing?

MoviePass is always trying to find ways of adapting its business model as more and more people join, and one of those latest efforts is seen with Peak Pricing. On June 22, MoviePass said the following:

Under this plan, if the combination of demand for a title, date or part of day is higher, subscribers may be asked to pay a small additional fee depending on the level of demand. You can avoid this peak surcharge by choosing an alternative date or film.

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In the MoviePass app, showtimes that are affected by Peak Pricing will be indicated by a red lightning bolt icon next to them. If a showtime isn’t currently in Peak Pricing but might enter it soon, you’ll see a grey icon.

The surcharge you’ll need to pay is entirely dependent on the movie and time, but as a point of reference, the screenshots MoviePass shared show a surcharge of $3.43. Thankfully, MoviePass will launch Peak Passes in the coming weeks that’ll allow you to waive the Peak Pricing fee once per month.

Peak Pricing officially launched on July 5 and is rolling out to users over the coming weeks. If you’re currently subscribed to an annual or quarterly plan, you won’t have to deal with Peak Pricing until your plan ends and renews.

Be mindful of the device authorization limit

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If you’re someone that lives the two phone life or frequently goes from device to device, you’ll want to keep MoviePass’s device authorization limit in mind.

To “keep your account secure”, MoviePass only allows you to be signed into the MoviePass app on one phone at a time. However, if you do get a new phone or need to sign into another one for whatever reason, you can log into your account on another phone every 30 days.

Just download the app, enter your credentials, and confirm that you want to use that as your authorized device.

Updated July 12, 2018: Updated the plan information now that the iHeartRadio promo is over and added more details about premium movies.

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