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Sinemia Brings Back Debit Cards After Lawsuit Over Transaction Fees

Sinemia, the monthly subscription-based movie ticket service, is bringing back its physical debit cards for in-person movie ticket purchases.

The debit cards are coming back “by popular demand” after the company dropped the cards in May, according to TechCrunch. The cardless system caused problems for customers, who were charged with third-party transaction fees, which lead to a class action lawsuit against the company. The lawsuit claimed that Sinemia “essentially became a bait-and-switch scheme,” Business Insider reported.

“It lures consumers in by convincing them to purchase a purportedly cheaper movie subscription, and then adds undisclosed fees that make such purchases no bargain at all,” the lawsuit alleged.

Sinemia lowered its membership prices over the summer with a number of discounted plans, including a $3.99-per-month subscription for customers who could purchase one ticket each month.

The new cards will allow moviegoers to to purchase their tickets at the theater or online. The card costs a one-time payment of $15 and is purchased through the website, so the savings will begin fairly quickly. But online purchases will still be subject to the same third-party transaction fees. So it might not be the best option for people who consistently purchase early movie tickets online, because they will still be paying the $1.80 transaction fee.

“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,” Sinemia said in a press release, reported by TechCrunch.