Movie prices in South Africa: 2005 to 2015

Ticket prices at South Africa’s major cinema chains have increased this year, with Ster-Kinekor leading the charge.

While Nu Metro’s prices went up by between 0% and 10.5%, Ster-Kinekor’s prices saw hikes of between 5% and 16%.

Many of the hikes are above the consumer price index and inflation numbers, as determined by Statistics South Africa.

When previously asked about its ticket price hikes, Ster-Kinekor said an annual price adjustment is normal for companies operating within the entertainment industry.

It also said ticket prices vary across Ster-Kinekor’s sites, and therefore the price increases also vary.

For our comparison, we looked at three categories of Ster-Kinekor ticket prices and plotted them against where they would have been had they only increased by CPI every year.

Ster-Kinekor 3D and 2D ticket prices versus inflation – 2005 to 2015

Ster-Kinekor ticket prices versus inflation - 2005 to 2015
Ster-Kinekor ticket prices versus inflation: 2005 – 2015

The three categories we considered were:

  • 3D movies at Ster-Kinekor’s most expensive cinema complexes, referred to as Classic.
  • 2D movies at Ster-Kinekor’s most expensive cinema complexes.
  • 2D movies at Ster-Kinekor’s mid-range cinemas, referred to as Junction.

Ster-Kinekor no longer refers to its cinema complexes as “Classic” or “Junction”, although signs referring to the cinemas in this way are still up all over South Africa.

Ster-Kinekor also operates cheaper cinemas, notably Sterland in Pretoria and Carlton in Johannesburg. 2D prices at these cinemas (R24 and R29 respectively) remain in-line with the CPI projections from 2005 Junction prices.

Ster-Kinekor’s movie ticket price data was gathered from multiple sources, and prices were rounded up or down for the comparison.

It’s also worth noting that the CPI percentages above were derived from Stats SA’s re-based index.

In January 2009, Stats SA changed the naming and composition of headline CPI measures. The weighting of items in the basket were also changed.

This means some of the CPI figures published prior to 2009 differ from the new CPI percentages calculated – usually by fractions of a percentage point.

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Movie prices in South Africa: 2005 to 2015