Sinemia brings back physical debit cards for in-person, fee-free tickets

Sinemia announced this morning the return of its physical debit card for in-person movie ticket sales, by “popular customer demand.” The MoviePass competitor dropped the feature back in May, but the push toward a cardless system met with pushback from customers irritated by third-party transaction fees driving up the service’s cost-cutting promises.

The new cards can be used to purchase movie tickets in-person at theaters. They also can be used for standard online orders, but those tickets will be subject to the same sorts of fees that have left some customers irritated at Sinemia’s shifting business model. The card will also cost you $15, a one-time purchase made through the company’s site — which means it will take a couple of movies before the savings really kick in.

“While our customers have been pleased that we are the only subscription service that continues to provide tickets to any movie for any showtime at any movie theater, we are constantly seeking to improve,” CEO Rifat Oguz said in a release. “Based on customer feedback, we’ve brought back physical debit cards to give our customers the option to avoid all booking fees as well as choose how they want to enjoy their night out at the movies.”

Like MoviePass, Sinemia’s plans have gone through numerous changes in the past year, though its upgrades generally appear aimed at offering users more options, rather than a bid to figure out how to stop losing money. That said, the initial move toward an all card-free system was clearly received as a misstep among many users.