Taking Snacks/drinks into theaters

Christy - posted on 12/03/2011 ( 56 moms have responded )

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I read a letter to Dear Abby about what people thought about bringing in food and drinks to the movies. Some say it is like theft, others say the snacks are too expensive and the movie theater is robbing people on the cost of drinks and snacks.

One person that responded also said that it teaches children the wrong thing to do so, and to eat before hand.

I am not sure my take on this, my mom used to bring in food and drink for us as kids to the theater, ( we didn't have much money at all and didn't get to go to the movies that much).

What are your thoughts on this?

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[deleted account]

"Where I live they check your purse so sneaking food in is very difficult. "

I would easily decide to never attend a theater where my bag was checked. Either they're nosy parkers or they have sucha HUGE crime problem that I wouldn't feel safe there period. - snacks or no snacks.

Christy - posted on 12/04/2011

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I can't believe someone asked one of the commentors on here to throw away their paper cup from taco bell with tap water in it. I would have thrown it in his/her face! ARG

√v^√v^√♥ - posted on 12/06/2011

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It can cost like what Hope was saying, some 60 dollars if you eat there. Why don't they just open up a decent restaurant inside with a quick line for people wanting small meals to take inside the theater? I don't get it. They serve garbage and the costs are astronomical. I have a heck of a time buying a candy bar in a store for 1.29 or at a gas station for 1.59 because I remember them being less than .50 cents each. Then they went to .65, then .75. I just can't do it. I don't buy them anymore unless they go on sale. Now all the pop is going through the roof too? Charging the same amount for a tiny 12oz as they would a 2 litre bottle? Nope. It's suuuuuuch a waste! Guess my life will be healthier because I'm not buying it anymore haha
So heck if I'm going to the theatre to pay 4.50 for a candybar. I can't do it. It's not like they charge double. It's quadruple! They need to figure out a better way to make money, because I'm not helping out their business by buying the food anymore. Nope nope nope.

Nikki - posted on 12/05/2011

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Yeah I take food, but we are allowed too. I haven't been to the cinema in years. @ Jodi, on the Sunshine coast it's like $18 for a normal ticket and 20 something for a 3D.

Jane - posted on 12/05/2011

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We always buy the food at the theater, however, I see no problem with bringing your own stuff either. I'm just too lazy. The theaters charge such a ridiculous amount of money for their food that it's almost criminal. When you get a bucket of popcorn that costs about 50 cents to make (that includes the bucket/bag), to charge 5.00 for it seems so unreasonable. A family should be able to enjoy a movie with some treats even if that means bringing their own.

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Stifler's - posted on 12/06/2011

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The movies here has a restaurant attached! It's awesome too we go there for lunch without going to the movies.

Janice - posted on 12/06/2011

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Yeah, its crazy but at all the local theaters if you have a medium or bigger purse they ask to take a quick look. Sneaking small candy like hershey's kisses is doable but a drink is not. And as others said if you are caught with outside food you can be kicked out with out a refund. At 11$ a ticket its not worth it.

~♥Little Miss - posted on 12/06/2011

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Yup......but it is not illegal. You really are not doing anything illegal, you cannot get arrested, it is just frowned upon.

~♥Little Miss - posted on 12/06/2011

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Why is it theft? Because someone does not want to pay 5 dollars for a beverage? Or because they may not have the snack someone wants to eat? Not getting that. Theft is when you are physically stealing from a place. It is not against the LAW to bring in outside food/drink, it is a policy by the Cinema. I do it, and I will continue. I like to eat twizzlers with my popcorn, and I don't want to pay that much when i could by them for 3-4 dollars cheaper at the store.

[deleted account]

Oh I'm a bad bad person. I do it all the time.I have since I was a teenager. At one point, my BFF and I had it down to a science. I'm sorry, but with tickets for 2 people costing $25, to then spend the SAME amount on 2 popcorns and 2 pops (small) would be unaffordable. Yes, yes, I could go without but then the theater would still be out the exact same amount of money. So I get my bottle of pop and my snack for under $5 per person.

Tracey - posted on 12/05/2011

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I have a far bigger problem with people noisily rushing in and out (always from halfway along the row so the maximum number of people have to move) of the cinema to get drinks & food halfway through the film than I do with people taking their own snacks in.

Corinne - posted on 12/05/2011

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We don't go to the cinema very often because of the ridiculous prices. On those very rare occassions, I break out the big handbag and stuff it with juice boxes, fruit, popcorn and chocolate. No way would I be happy with someone rummaging in my bag, that's just daft.

Carlie - posted on 12/05/2011

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Where is the sign that says you can't? Ha. Sneaky sneaky. Ya know what? I do it too. And I do it just about EVERY time. And I have no shame either. Ya know why? Because I make sure I buy food from them as well. Now. Where's that sign? :)

[deleted account]

They fucking check your purse??

Is a water bottle OK? How about a pack of gum or a few tic-tacs?

Janice - posted on 12/05/2011

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Havent been to the theater in years because it is so expensive. Where I live they check your purse so sneaking food in is very difficult. I definitely snuck food as a teenager though. The prices really are outrageous. As an adult I definitely paid for the food but I wasnt happy about it.
When my kids are old enough to see a movie in the theater we will pay for food in order to set a good example. We will definitely go to a first showing though because it is cheaper. They still have drive-ins where I live and those are sooooo much more affordable so I'm sure those will be where we see movies most often.

Stifler's - posted on 12/04/2011

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Yeah I'd pay that for Gold Class. We don't have one here but my sister in law reckons it's not much more expensive and you're allowed alcohol and way better seats.

Jodi - posted on 12/04/2011

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Holy shit Hope, that's REALLY expensive. Unless it was a Dendy Cinema (I've had a few expensive date nights in the premier lounge, but it is SOOOOO worth it). But for a standard cinema? Wow.

Stifler's - posted on 12/04/2011

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That happens to me if I get a drink too Liz. I always need to pee really bad in a good bit and end up missing some of the movie.

Hope - posted on 12/04/2011

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We went to the movies a month ago, it was $18 for an adult ticket. We got a large soda and pop corn to share and it us nearly $60 just for my Husband and I to see a movie. It was date night so we didn't mind.

Aniesha - posted on 12/04/2011

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Yep, I smuggle stuff in. Not just because of the prices (although they are stupidly high!), but because of diet restrictions, being a vegan, they just wouldn't have the stuff there that I could eat!

[deleted account]

Whatever it is, you can buy it as a gift for your loved ones. LOL



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http://www.amazon.com/Wabash-Valley-Farm...

Bonnie - posted on 12/04/2011

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Yes, here to you have to pay extra for butter on your popcorn. I think it's $.25 or something, but margarine is free.

Lady Heather - posted on 12/04/2011

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For anyone that did not understand my post...half the 12 bucks is popcorn and the other half is the syrup that they use to make the drink. Also made of corn. And some chemicals.

Oh, and you have to pay extra for "buttery topping". Whatever the fuck that is.

[deleted account]

We usually buy the food.
Honestly, I very rarely take J to the theater outside the Free Summer Movie Festival (free kids movie at 10am) so I figure if we're getting the movie free, I can buy a popcorn and soda to share--otherwise I feel like I'm just ripping off the theater. I do usually smuggle in a water though because the popcorn makes J so thirsty and soda just doesn't quench it.

My husband LOVES movie theater popcorn. He swears it's different than anything he can pop at home (and we have a really nice popper) so he always gets it as a special treat, along with a soda to share.

Bonnie - posted on 12/04/2011

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At the theatre here, they charge $8 for a child between the ages of 3 and 13. I think that is ridiculous. No child at 3 has the same attention span as a 13 year old or fully understands a movie.

As for food and drinks, the only thing we usually buy is popcorn to share, even that is $6 for the regular size.

Jenni - posted on 12/04/2011

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We've only taken the kids to the theatre once. And we did buy a large popcorn, skittles and pop to share. The portions are huge so that was plenty enough for the 4 of us.

But before I had kids I would bring my own food and drink. The prices are gauged to all get out of town. Sorry, they are... it's a bit ridiculous when a drink and popcorn or other snack can cost more than the movie ticket alone.

I can buy a huge box of popcorn at the grocery store for 3 dollars and make the same amount of popcorn 10x over. It's obscene.

[deleted account]

I go to the cinema maybe once every two years. And when I do, I'm not about to shove my face into a giant tub of neon yellow popcorn and a 32oz soda (both called "small"). It just makes me need to pee throughout.

Jodi - posted on 12/04/2011

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Hahaha, yep, sounds like where I grew up. The movies were the only entertainment around. We had the lake to ski on too...... :P

Stifler's - posted on 12/04/2011

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It's so ridiculous but it's the only thing to do in town so people will pay. If they don't own a ski boat.

Jodi - posted on 12/04/2011

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Crap, you pay $15 and it ISN'T in 3D??? THAT is theft, LOL. I can't remember the Hoyts prices, but I'm pretty sure that's the 3D price (thereabouts anyway). Our local theatre is $11.70 for a 3D movie, and $9.70 for a standard one for an adult.



Emerald's theatre sounds like the one we had where I grew up and the population was only 2000 people :P

Stifler's - posted on 12/04/2011

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LOL Lisa I went at 10am. I ate beef jerky that I bought from the movies sadly. But usually if we go I take supermarket bought snacks.

Stifler's - posted on 12/04/2011

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NO. Emerald doesn't even have a 3D cinema. They also left the lights on until 15 minutes into the movie and people were screaming at them to turn them off and then they refused to restart the movie.

Minnie - posted on 12/04/2011

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I don't ever bring snacks. We manage to survive two hours without stuffing our faces.



Yeah, I went to the midnight showing of Breaking Dawn..didn't feel the need to down M & Ms at 1 a.m. blech.



I usually buy a bottled water.



Not that we go to the movies much. Maybe twice a year.

Stifler's - posted on 12/04/2011

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And last time I went to the movies (2 weeks ago) they charged my 15 dollars to see Twilight. I'd say they're making enough money out of people paying to see the movie.

Stifler's - posted on 12/04/2011

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I say that the movie theatre prices are robbing people blind and I always take my own M&Ms bought from the supermarket in my handbag BAHAHA. Or a big bag of McDonalds. They don't care here. Where I grew up they only just started checking whether or not you had a ticket.

Becky - posted on 12/03/2011

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We almost never go to the movies because it's just too darn expensive now days! As kids my mom used to have us bring in our own drinks and snacks. Never saw an issue with it then & I would do it now too! All & all it costs almost $40.00 for a family of 3 to go to the movies around here! It's simply ridiculous . . . and add a $15.00 popcorn and soda "deal" to the mix just makes it that much more out of our price range!

Johnny - posted on 12/03/2011

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The theatres don't sell stuff we eat, except for popcorn. So I bring in my own water and snacks, usually trail mix. Our local theatre only has pop to drink and candy to eat, and I'm only going to feed that to my daughter if I don't want to sit through the movie but instead have to drag a screaming kid out in the dark. No thanks. So until they start selling edible products, rather than fake stuff, I'll be bringing my own. There are a few small theatres here that sell a good variety of snacks, including trail mix, veggies and dip, water, and baked goods at a reasonable price, but they don't usually run kids movies. If they did, I wouldn't smuggle in food because I like to support their efforts to provide better quality.

Sal - posted on 12/03/2011

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You pay for the movie so taking your own snacks is nothing like theft, I dont go often but see no prob in a discreet packet of lolls in my bag and if they didn't over price themselves I'd buy there..... I have seen people taking in bags of hot takeaway that's probally pushing the boundary

[deleted account]

We don't go to the movies too often, but I have done it in the past. I honestly don't see why they care. Some people will still buy their popcorn and pop.

[deleted account]

That would be nice Sharon. Here they have a sign telling you that you aren't allowed to bring in any glass or plastic bottles and no outside food or drink. I always hid my water bottle in my jacket that I carried in. One time I forgot my jacket, so I brought an empty paper cup from Taco Bell and filled in from the drinking fountain... and they told me to throw it away!.. and if I wanted water I could buy it. Yeah, I just kind of stood there til the guy walked away and walked my butt and my free water into the show. I was NOT happy.

Mrs. - posted on 12/03/2011

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I think Dear Abby can eat me.

Seriously, I can't eat anything at the movie theatre. Between the dairy, gluten and sugar sensitivities, it ain't happening.

Now, if they started selling healthy options, including popcorn that wasn't pre-cover in this weird yellow film, then I might just purchase something.

So yeah, I sneak my Larabar and water that isn't that nasty-ass Dasani (they only sell Dasani at the theatres in Ontario it seems...just like every friggin airport I've been in..sometimes I loathe Coca-Cola for that monopoly) in.

Of course, there are times I don't eat at all. For years, I didn't bother.

I guess you could ask these "stealing" folks if someone goes to the theatre and doesn't eat anything, are they stealing too? Because a lot of people choose not to eat anything. So, if you bring yourself a little snack, how does that effect the theatre's bottomline any more than someone not eating?

Sherri - posted on 12/03/2011

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Ya who and where adds corn syrup to their popcorn, never heard of such a thing in a movie theater.

[deleted account]

I honestly don't see it as "smuggling" and I've walked right into movie theatres carrying a water bottle. But, yeah, juice boxes go in my purse. We do get the mega-popcorn bucket and share it as a family.

Jodi - posted on 12/03/2011

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$12 for popcorn? Wow.....we don't pay that. Neither does it have corn syrup in it here.

Lady Heather - posted on 12/03/2011

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Theft? Theft is charging 12 bucks for a bit of corn and syrup that is also made of corn.

Tinker1987 - posted on 12/03/2011

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my mom used too bring out own snacks and drink but we didnt have much money then. Im not sure where i stand either,one one hand its more convenient to bring your own,because at a ciniplex the size of the pop and popcorn is just to big.and expensive...while on the other hand you wouldnt go to a restaraunt and bring your own meal right?

Amanda - posted on 12/03/2011

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I always take my own food and drink in with me. My hubby has always bought what he wanted from the kiosk, since he met me we do it the cheap way. However he still refuses to be seen taking his own food in and will only walk through the door with me if I have it hidden in my bag

[deleted account]

I've done it in the past (haven't been to the movie theater since I was pregnant w/ my son). The one thing I ALWAYS smuggled in was my water bottle. Sorry.... not paying $3 so that I can drink water that is free out of the drinking fountain (they will charge just for the cup, but won't allow you to bring your own in... even if it's a paper cup).

Jodi - posted on 12/03/2011

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We don't have to smuggle them in. Our local theater has no restrictions on it at all.

If they had reasonable prices on their own stuff, I could care less that they put restrictions on it. But given the absolutely exhorbitant prices they charge, I don't think they should legally be allowed to restrict the food and drink brought onto the premises.

My husband and I run a leisure and recreation business and have a snack bar - our prices are horrendous (LOL) but it is a convenience price. We don't restrict people bringing food and beverage onto the premises themselves though. A lot of people don't bring their own and will pay the prices, but some (such as kids birthday parties, etc) will be more organised and bring their own stuff to make it cheaper. We feel that by allowing them to do this, we end up with more patronage anyway.

Tam - posted on 12/03/2011

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I agree with Sherri. The only stuff I will purchase at a theater is stuff like popcorn and maybe those awesome sour pickles if they have them. Other stuff, like drinks and so on, I tend to carry in myself. My main reasoning is that while I would normally be fine paying the prices, my kids don't NEED the ridiculously large sodas and subpar foods. They don't normally get a lot of soda in the first place and a juice box or two is plenty.

I tend to frequent those movie tavern type places anyhow, so my gripes are kinda moot. They tend to have prices for food a bit more on par with a casual dining place like Ruby Tuesdays anyhow. And more reasonable portion sizes.

Sherri - posted on 12/03/2011

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I always have the kids smuggle snacks and drinks in to the theater what the charge is highway robbery and I refuse to pay such ridiculous prices when I can supply all of them with candy and a drink for what I would pay for one candy bar at the theater.

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