Living in Sydney

Movies [A day at the]

Fancy a film while you’re in Sydney? Well there are a few things you may want to keep in mind before you head off to the cinema in one of the world’s most expensive cities.

Release dates are different than those in your home country

Whether you are from the US, or another country the dates that blockbusters come to Australia are different and vary depending on the popularity of the film. What may have released in September in London may come to Australia in November, so be aware of those changes. Likewise you may get to see a film before your friends and family back home, making you the ultimate winner at any discussion about the film. You can even be evil and ruin the movie for them…please don’t though…

Prices are insanely high

I’m used to $2.00 Tuesdays by house in Chicago, but here the cheap films cost about $16.50 AUD and that is with a movie club membership. The student discount helps some, leaving the price at $17.50 AUD per person. If you’re an adult…first let me say “I’m sorry”, as your ticket costs $21.50. Now these prices are roughly for Event Cinemas, and Hoyts Cinemas.

A friend suggested to me a Dendy Cinemas membership, as they give you better discounts on student tickets and special deals, with tickets costing $13.50 AUD. The nearest one is near the Sydney Opera House.

However after looking at all three cinemas, I’ve just concluded that a trip to the movies here will just have to indeed be a special event. The memberships have a yearly fee, and with my stay being only a year and half I saw no point in paying for a membership ON TOP of the ticket fee.

Forget the trailers, you’re just going to see ads

Finally, you should brace yourself for the hard truth that cinemas in Australia have more local ads for products and services than movie trailers. I was gutted when I learned this; now I’ve just added it to the short list of small blessings I can enjoy when I move back home.

I’m not joking I was watching insurance and food ads for 20 minutes!


Not to worry too much though, the cinema’s obscenely high prices for snacks and food are the same, although I will say the seats in the theaters are much more comfortable, like the ones at the AMC chain in the US, without that AMC price!

So do go to the movies here if you are planning on living here. It’s an experience; plus there’s all the new movies coming out like Rogue One just recently did. I saw it and it was magical.



  1. May I just write, that, whilst on the surface this may be true, cheap ass Tuesdays at Dendy, Events & Hoyts is $13 (plus booking free/$1.25/$1.50 respectively if pre-bought online). Dendy membership is free certain times of the year so something to keep an eye out for each year – plus signing up gives you a free movie which covers the cost of joining anyway. Events have a loyalty program where you watch six movies and get one free, this can be reduced to five if buying online (as it’s points based and there’s a 25 point bonus buying online) and cheap Tuesdays still count towards this. Hoyts has a free membership (which is pointless) and a paid for one which gets you a full price ticket for $13, so a good one off discount.
    The big two (Events & Hoyts) have a regular movie of the week for $10 or $11 respectively and often it’s more than just one (sometime six or seven at either cinema) so as long as you don’t need to see the opening week these are a great way of catching a film.


    1. Thanks for sharing! I agree with you about the loyalty programs and discount offers. I wrote this WAAAYYY before I ever joined one and now after a year here have gotten a better understanding of movie tix here.


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