A couple of weeks ago I published a translation of a survey into Toho Cinema’s proposed 300 yen cut to a standard admission ticket, but since then I came across a Japanese-language article telling me why it is a portent of things to come.
First, the article listed historical prices for cinema tickets, calling it cartel pricing. However, there was no adjustment for inflation, but I found a site with historical CPI data, so I’ll use January 2011 as a base.
I think that table is saying that the correction to 1,500 yen makes prices cheaper than what they were in 1970. If the price remains at 1,800 yen, the 1970 price adjusted for inflation is 576 yen, which means that current prices are within 4% of what they were in 1970 allowing for CPI; this actually destroys the author’s argument about how prices have risen drastically since 1970. However, let’s move onto the other points.
Currently, although 1,800 yen is the standard price, one day a week is Ladies’ Day, where women get in for 1,000 yen. Furthermore, over 60s get in for the same discounted price, but Toho Cinemas are talking about getting rid of Ladies’ Day and limiting the OAP discount to the over 65s. The reason for this is that at the moment over 60% of tickets sold are at 1,000 yen, just one-tenth are at the full price, and another tenth at 1,500 yen, so if this goes through it will mean eight times as many people paying more than paying less!
The final statistic provided is that in 2004 the average ticket price was around 1,200 yen, but by last year it had dropped to under 1,100 yen, according to unnamed sources in the cinema business. Although there seems to be a bit of a slippery-slope argument here, it is iinteresting food for thought!
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