Alamo Drafthouse Just Launched a Subscription Service and Please, Take My Money

Illustration for article titled Alamo Drafthouse Just Launched a Subscription Service and Please, Take My Money
Screenshot: Alamo Drafthouse

My committed film enthusiasts: I have some incredible news to share. The long-awaited Alamo Drafthouse subscription service for all-you-can watch movies has arrived—and if you’re a frequent moviegoer (and can restrain yourself from going nuts on pricey snacks), it could save you a good chunk of change.

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The Alamo Season Pass comes with two primary perks: unlimited movies up to one per day, and the ability to book tickets up to seven days in advance. That last one’s a big deal for folks who like to catch movies shortly after their release, as those screenings tend to fill up super quickly. This way, you’ll actually have a shot at getting into a show you actually want to see.

All three Season Pass subscription tiers that are available for its 41 theaters come with the same perks, but they’re priced a little differently depending on location. For example, a subscription for Alamo’s New Braunfels only costs $15 per month, while subscriptions for New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles will run you $30 per month. The tier for Alamo’s Austin, Denver, Kansas City, Phoenix, Raleigh, San Antonio, Springfield, and Yonkers locations falls slightly in the middle at $20. (This plan can also see shows in NYC, SF, or LA for a discounted ticket price of $10.) In some areas, there may be a waiting list. But the company said in a press release that memberships should be available to everyone “in the coming months.”

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One of the best parts about the plan is the ability to add on tickets, so you don’t have to coordinate precision booking with a friend while hoping someone doesn’t swipe your buddy’s seat. Season Pass lets you book companion tickets during checkout if you’re just adding on a ticket, but users can also add up to four Extra Seats to their subscription at a discounted price. Adding one Extra Seat to a subscription, for example, knocks a dollar off the regular price for the second. But the account holder has to be present, so this option would be ideal for, say, families or couples who regularly go together.

This is, to be sure, not your $10 MoviePass subscription. For one thing, you aren’t limited by your options, as Season Pass is good for almost any Alamo Drafthouse screening. If you’re hoping to catch a flick in 3D, 70mm, Dolby Atmos, or Big Show formats, you can book those too for an additional, non-refundable fee of $2. And the app allows you to make up to two reservations in the same day, in the event you already know what the next film you want to see is. And as a cherry on top of this already fantastic deal, Alamo will still reward Victory points to Season Pass holders.

Is $30 a month a little steep as far as monthly subscriptions go? Sure, if you’re comparing it to some on-demand services. But even AMC’s A-List plans cost as much as $24 a month and limits the number of movies you can see to three a week. But if you typically see two movies a month in New York, for example, your tickets are going to run you somewhere in the ballpark of $19 after tax. For just $11, you can see all the movies you want. You feel me?

If you’re looking to make the most of this deal, remember to go easy on the snacks. That’s what’s really going to hurt you if you start using this thing weekly.

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DISCUSSION

djtsshittygolfgame
DJTsShittyGolfGame

A few thoughts from someone who has been using the Season Pass since November of last year. The seven day restriction is hardly a perk, many new movies and speciality screenings are announced weeks in advance. A few times since I’ve had the pass I’ve gone ahead and bought tickets for a screening I wanted to see that was rapidly filling up. For newer movies it doesn’t really bother me, I can wait to see Black Widow the week after it hits, but My Man Godfrey sold out three weeks before showtime so I paid full price for those tickets.

In Austin at least, there is a buck fifty (or so) non-refundable “convenience fee.” It’s not much, but it’s there. In addition, you can’t use it for movie parties or any special screenings like that. Not really a complaint, just a fact. We saw ten movies in November (Hanksgiving ruled), but only a few in December because the majority of the screenings were movie parties or some other special functions.

All of that being said, for the SO and myself it’s still an amazing deal. We have to see two movies a month to make it pay for itself, which is easy. It really allows you to take some risks when seeing movies, we saw Parasite last night, which is a movie I usually would have waited to stream. I also feel like this is uniquely suited to Alamo given all of the weird/old/niche movies they show. Honestly, we love it. If you like going to the movies and you have some money to spare it’s easy to pay for the pass in a months time and Alamo is (imo) the best theater experience around.