Tara’s Take on Cinema Seating

My opinion regarding movie theatre seating policies.

Tara Shear, Opinion Editor

It is a typical activity in which teenagers indulge in fairly often, especially on weekends: a trip to the movie theatre. Whether you prefer Tinseltown or AMC 24 or your own local cinema, you will likely be able to purchase your tickets ahead of time on the theatre’s website or on Fandango, a popular site that anyone with access to the internet can use to avoid unnecessary social interaction and skipping queue lines at theatres. Needless to say, most of us show up at the movie theatre with a QR code ready on our phones, and this makes going to see the newest film pretty easy.

My problem, though, pertains specifically to the policies regarding purchasing seats: that no single seat can be left unoccupied between parties or at the end of a row. I understand the purpose behind this, that it ensures the theatre can make the most money by filling up all possible seats, and discouraging single seats allows parties of two or more to continue to purchase seats in a single theatre, but my opinion stands. I wish that this policy did not exist, allowing me and my introversion to sit at the end seat with my friends and not have to worry about who is going to sit on the other side of me.

I know that this is a policy at popular theatres in Jacksonville such as AMC and Tinseltown, but there are definitely some theatres who do not participate in choosing seats online prior to actually sitting down in the cinema. For those who want the seclusion and introversion, they can go to a theatre that does not have a requirement to choose seats prior to seating, but you then risk the chance of finding no available seating or at least only undesirable seating. Therefore, this policy remains and the incentive of purchasing specific seats prior to a movie time outweighs the downsides, but I would much rather prefer if I could leave a single seat between me and the person in the party beside me.