The summer movie season could be a lot cheaper for film lovers this year as ticketing service Fandango and a new, studio-backed competitor are aggressively wooing audiences with free ticket offers.
Atom Tickets and Fandango have both rolled out customer loyalty programs that aim to get more people in the seats. Atom’s just announced program will give members a free ticket to a standard-format movie after they see four movies. Additionally, users can refer a movie to friends. Once three friends buy tickets for that recommendation, they’ll get another free ticket. (Canadian users will get a free popcorn.)
Fandango, which is owned by NBCUniversal, recently launched its own program, offering a $6 credit, which can be used for tickets, digital rentals, or other purchases, for every four tickets purchased.
Both programs, for now, are limited. Fandango’s is set to run through Aug. 31, while Atom’s can shut down after Nov. 30. But either could be extended, depending on the competitive conditions this fall.
If you sign up for either loyalty program, though, don’t stockpile those free tickets. In Atom’s case, at least, they must be used within 30 days. (On the upside, you’ll have plenty of movies to choose from this year, including Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, Mission: Impossible-Fallout, and Ant-Man and the Wasp.)