MoviePass today provided detailed information regarding how its new “Peak Pricing” system will work. While also confirming that it’s now in the process of going live with the expectation that all MoviePass subscribers will be exposed to the pricing change “in the coming weeks,” and that it will be in effect at all movie theaters in the US.
Peak Pricing is basically surge pricing and was first suggested by MoviePass late last month, although the details were a little limited at the time. With MoviePass simply confirming that during busier times, some users can expect to have to pay an additional fee to see select movies. As part of today’s explanation, MoviePass has still not defined the exact price and instead states the “small additional fee” will be dynamic. Meaning, it will vary depending on “movie demand and popularity.” Likewise, while it was understood Peak Pricing will mostly affect those attending movies on opening weekends, MoviePass has stated it will not affect all movies, or all opening weekends. Again, it will depend on the demand and popularity on a case-by-case basis. What’s more, MoviePass states its members will have the option to avoid having to pay the cost once per month - members will essentially be able to waive the Peak Pricing on the first occasion in a given month, and then be liable for the rest of the month. Movie Pass also explains users will be able to check whether a desired movie is subject to Peak Pricing before heading to the movie theater, although this will likely be limited with the subscription service saying its “unable to predict exactly when a showtime will enter peak pricing.” So, how far in advance movie-goers will know remains to be seen.
Previously, MoviePass had confirmed those who have paid for their plan on an annual basis would be exempt from Peak Pricing and while this still is the case, this is a limited-time exemption as today MoviePass confirmed those annual members will be liable for the additional costs once they renew their annual plan. Speaking of which, Movie Pass states the use of Peak Pricing is needed to ensure it can continue to offer a best-value subscription price. To highlight this point further, MoviePass draws on AMC’s recent subscription model as evidence that in spite of the higher price at certain times, it remains a better and more value-based option than simply raising the monthly and yearly plan prices in general, and for all members.