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Film lovers fall foul of soaring ticket prices

George Mills · 21 Feb 2014, 11:41

Published: 21 Feb 2014 11:41 GMT+01:00

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Moviegoers in Spain have been hit hard by rising ticket prices in Spain in recent years.

The average price for weekday sessions has skyrocketed from an average €4.80 ($6.60) to €6.97, according to new research by consumer group Facua.

That's a rise of 45.2 percent, or around twice the overall consumer prince index rise for the same period.

Facua pins the increase on decreased between competition and higher taxes.

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The number of  cinemas in Spain from 1,223 to 841 from 2002 to 2012, according to Spain's culture ministry, while Spain's value-added tax rose from 8 percent to 21 percent in late 2012.

Barcelona is now the most expensive place in Spain to see a film with average ticket prices of €9.11 on the weekend and €8.60 on weekdays.

At the other end of the scale, the cheapest place to catch a flick is Almeria. Prices there are €5 and €4.

In Madrid those prices are €8.40 and €8,12.

Facua now wants Spanish cinemas to introduce subscription schemes which allow people to see as many films as they want in a month.

Spain's rising ticket prices come at a time when Spanish cinema attendance is falling. Numbers dropped from 94.2 million in 2012 to 79 million according to the European Audovisual Observatory. 

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That drop is four times the European average.

Spain's cinema industry is also struggling for funding with government subsidies in free fall. Meanwhile, an increasing number of Hollywood film makers are choosing Spain as a location for their films.

Spain is also considered one of the worst offenders when it comes to internet piracy.

A study by the International Data Corporation commissioned by a coalition of rights holders claimed 77 percent of movie downloads in the first half of 2010 in Spain were illegal.

George Mills (george.mills@thelocal.com)

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