SALT LAKE CITY — MoviePass competitor Sinemia announced a new addition to its service that aims to wean users away from MoviePass.
The new refer-a-friend service will award $10 in Sinemia credit to anyone who joins Sinemia from a competing service. New users referred through the program will also receive $10 in Sinemia credit.
The program will be available to Sinemia users in U.S., Canada, the U.K., Turkey and Australia.
Every Sinemia user will receive an unique code in their app that they can use to refer their friends.
New users will have to show that they’ve switched from another movie ticket subscription service by uploading a photo from their old service’s debit card. This is likely a reference to MoviePass, which provides customers with a debit card to use when buying movie tickets.
“We want to provide an opportunity for our users to share Sinemia with their friends while making it more affordable and convenient than ever for new moviegoers to try Sinemia,” said Rifat Oguz, CEO and founder of Sinemia in a statement. “With Sinemia, people can see the summer’s most anticipated movies as well as independent features at the theater of their choice, for much less than the price of a standard ticket. We have flexible plans crafted for all types of moviegoers and want to make it easy for our customers to enjoy their movie day or night out.”
Sinemia requires new users to pay for a full year upfront.
The refer-a-friend program comes as MoviePass struggles to find firm footing in the land of movie ticket subscription services. The service’s parent company, Helios and Matheson Analytics, reported losing $126.6 million in three months, according to my report for the Deseret News.
The monetary woes arrive as MoviePass shuffled its subscription plan to allow customers three movie tickets per month for $9.95.
Sinemia has long tried to distance itself from MoviePass. Last month, the company announced that it expanded its app beyond just ordering movie tickets, for example.
The company will now partner with Restaurant.com to offer customers discounted movie tickets and deals on their own meals before or after their trip to theaters, according to a press release from Sinemia.
Restaurant.com offers deals and discounts for more than 62,000 restaurants nationwide.
Sinemia subscribers will receive a free $25 gift card each month that they can use at one of the Restaurant.com partners.
The offer began July 11.
“At Sinemia, our mission is to provide customers a complete, end-to-end movie-going experience, and our partnership with Restaurant.com is another strong step in building the perfect movie night out,” said Oguz. “Dinner and a movie is a classic night out, but for many it’s simply unaffordable. We want to make it easier for our customers to enjoy their time out because we know they’re not leaving home just to watch a movie on the big screen, but for the entire social experience.”
Sinemia said the partnership “represents the next big step Sinemia is taking to become a one-stop destination for moviegoers planning a date night, family night out, or night out with friends.”
Sinemia currently offers a range of subscription plans to see multiple movies a month. The cheapest plan gives you one ticket per month for $4.99 (billed annually). The most expensive offers three movie tickets per month for $14.99 (also billed annually).
MoviePass CEO Mitch Lowe told BuzzFeed News he hoped to add a new “night at the movies” concept, which would include users paying for restaurant meals using their app by attaching a debit or credit card.
“Since we know the theater that you’ll watch a movie at, we know the cafés and restaurants around you that have offers,” said Lowe. “Or we know you love comedies, so we’ll promote, on behalf of a studio, a comedy we think you might like. Every one of these has an opt-out component. The idea is to make it more valuable to use our service as your guide.”
Sinemia had previously added features that MoviePass does not have. For example, Sinemia announced recently that it allows people to purchase tickets and select seats in advance, which MoviePass does not offer.
Sinemia similarly announced a new family plan that can help people bring anywhere from two to six people to the movies at one time, the Deseret News reported.