Largest cinema chain not taking nat'l film gift certificate

Nationale Bioscoopbon
Sinterklas left a film gift certificate in the rather large shoe of one child, December 2013. (photo: Nationale Bioscoopbon). Sinterklas left a film gift certificate in the rather large shoe of one child, December 2013. (photo: Nationale Bioscoopbon)

Cinema chain Pathé will no longer accept the national film vouchers sold by retailers across the country. The ban affects only those gift certificates, called the Nationale Bioscoopbon, purchased on or after April 1, the country’s largest film theater chain said in a statement.

People in the Netherlands spend between 10 and 13 million euros annually on the national film gift certificates, according to a NRC analysis of data from the Dutch cinema operator association NVB. The NVB is responsible for Bioscoopbon sales.

Pathé called the voucher “an important marketing tool” that was not meant to be profitable. Instead, it should be up to the individual theatre owners and chains to bring in audience members, a Pathé representative told the NRC.

Pathé controls about half of all movie theaters in the Netherlands.

Vouchers purchased before April 1 may still be used at Pathé theaters. Pathé still offers their own gift card, sold at theaters, many grocery stores and other retailers.

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