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Is it OK to Sneak Food into the Movies? Here's Why It Is Not a Good Idea

Updated on March 29, 2018
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Music, Movies & TV series are three of my interests. Reviews, facts about artists, fans and much other in my articles!

If you like to watch movies, maybe you enjoy going to the cinema. It is actually a very relaxing and entertaining activity everyone can do in order to spend some time with their friends or family.

If you like to go to the cinema, maybe you also love to have some snacks while sitting on the chair: watching a movie while crunching popcorns and drinking something is actually the description of paradise for many people. Not everything is perfect anyway: high prices of snacks sold in the movie theaters are actually a serious issue for people who just want to crunch something without spending a fortune. These guys usually bring with them food they have bought somewhere else, even if many movie theaters clearly forbid people to do it. Here we come to a question: is it ok to sneak food into the movies or not?

Have you ever bought snacks outside the movie theater in order to save money?

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A movie theater
A movie theater

Why are Snacks at the Cinema Expensive?

In order to answer this question, we should explain why snacks sold at the cinema are so expensive. When you buy a film ticket you are essentially paying the company which produced that film, not the movie theater itself, which only takes a little percentage of the earnings. Cinemas actually make a real profit by selling snacks and gadgets: we can say, all the extra things customers can choose to buy or not. That's the reason why they are expensive and you cannot bring food bought somewhere else with you: if all people do this, the movie theater doesn't earn enough money to survive. Here comes the decision of some cinemas to ban people who try to enter with food they have bought outside.

A packet of popcorns and a bottle of water
A packet of popcorns and a bottle of water

The Pros of Buying Snacks Outside the Cinema

Saving Money

Many guys cannot afford high prices of snacks sold at the cinema. At the same time people love to eat popcorns while watching films. Buying them outside the movie theater is actually a good solution for them to save money.

Snacks Sold at the Cinema are not Always Healthy

Popcorns and pastries are not usually suitable for people who are on a diet. Eating healthy food bought somewhere else is a good solution for these customers and the same popcorns are much healtier when made at home rather than those you can buy at the cinema. If we also consider people who have intolerances, we easily understand not all movie theaters are offering specific food for them, so that they have only two alternatives: watching the movie without crunching any snack or bringing food from home.

Do you like eating popcorns at the cinema?

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You are Free to Eat What You Want

There is also one last reason why this solution may be actually good for you: because we are born as free people. If you are paying for a movie ticket, you are entitled to watch the film and nobody should care about the food you are bringing with you.

Ticket gives you the right to watch the film. You should be free to bring food you have bought outside the movie theater if you want.
Ticket gives you the right to watch the film. You should be free to bring food you have bought outside the movie theater if you want. | Source

The Cons

Movie Theaters need to Make a Profit

As said before, snacks are an important source of income for movie theaters. If you buy popcorns inside the cinema, you are actually contributing to keep it alive. While it is true snack prices there are high, it is also true you can start saving money on other expensive products: cigarettes, alcohol, chance games... they affect your wallet much more than a packet of popcorns bought at the cinema.

There is a Wider Choice of Food in Movie Theaters than in the Past

Many movie theaters are actually providing various alternatives to popcorns, even healthy food solutions, so that fat snacks are not a must anymore. You can even choose to have a little meal while watching the film, as many movie theaters also sell slices of pizzas, sandwiches and other fast dishes.

A little margherita pizza bought in a movie theater: it is a little meal, not just a snack, and it can be a good alternative to popcorns.
A little margherita pizza bought in a movie theater: it is a little meal, not just a snack, and it can be a good alternative to popcorns.

Rules are Meant to be Followed

There is a final reason why sneaking food bought outside the movie theater is actually wrong. Following rules (even if you may not agree with them) will make you enjoy your film without any worries. Have you ever traveled on public transport without a valid ticket and with the constant fear of being fined? It is not a good sensation and you are not enjoying your journey. The same can be applied to people going to the cinema: here you only want to relax yourself and enjoy a moment with your friends or family. As you are not going to the cinema every night, snack prices will not be a so big problem for your wallet.

Your Arguments
Movie Theaters' Arguments
The Solution
Snacks at the cinema are expensive: buying them outside the movie theater is a good idea.
Prices of tickets are not enough to cover all the costs, as only a little percentage is taken by the movie theater: selling snacks is good for cinemas to make a profit.
Selling snacks at the cinema without making them too much expensive.
Food at the cinema is not always healthy.
Popcorns are the most sold snack at the cinema. Healthy food is not so much sold inside movie theaters.
Selling more healthy food inside the movie theaters, so that everyone can find snacks of their preferences.
I am free to eat what I want: I have paid for the ticket!
Movie theaters are private structures: owners have the right to tell you what you can do and what you cannot do inside, including eating food bought somewhere else.
Understand and follow the rules. If your cinema is not banning food bought somewhere else, feel free to eat it, otherwise it is better to buy snacks inside the movie theater.

Do you think cinemas have the right to ban people who eat food bought somewhere else?

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A frozen yogurt bought in a movie theater: a delicious alternative to popcorns you can try when you are going to watch a film.
A frozen yogurt bought in a movie theater: a delicious alternative to popcorns you can try when you are going to watch a film.


If your cinema doesn't allow people to bring food bought outside, don't do it. In this case you have three solutions: buying snacks inside the movie theater, refraining to crunch snacks during the film or finding another cinema which gives you total freedom.

Not only customers have to follow the rules: also cinemas should sell food at a reasonable price. Snacks should be a little more expensive than in other places, but not too much. Finally, movie theaters should provide the customers with a huge variety of food so that everyone can find snacks of their preferences, otherwise they'd better allow people to bring food bought outside.

And you, what do you think? Is it ok to sneak food into the movies? Have you ever done it? Write your opinion and your experiences in the comments!


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