Friends and I were "evacuated" out of a local multiplex with no written compensation. If we don't get it, here's part of the letter I'm planning to send:
To Whom It May Concern:
Two friends and I went to the showing of Star Wars: Episode III: Revenge of the Sith at the Regal Cinema in *** Mall in *****, **** on Wednesday, June 29th at 6:50 p.m. Approximately one hour into the film, the screen went black and the house lights came on. After sitting in silence for five minutes, we were told to evacuate due to an unclear power outage. When asked if we would be given any kind of reimbursement or free passes to return and finish the movie, the employee responded that she didn’t know. After leaving and coming back after about forty-five minutes, we were given no new information. The employees told us that if we brought back the ticket stubs within the next few days and explained what happened, we would be able to see it for free. “Does that offer expire?” we asked. Again, they did not know and could not give us an answer.
Your staff was polite, but clearly ill-informed about how to handle the situation or accommodate customers. They need to be given the authority to give customers the standard compensation when an emergency situation arises, or at least a supervisor (or a phone number to call one) to advise or inform them to do so. “We don’t know” or “we can’t tell you anything” is unacceptable – they should at least be able to say “I don’t know for sure – let me check with someone.” My friends and I had just spent over nine dollars ($9.25) on a film we didn’t get to see, with no guarantee that we would able to see it again at no extra charge.
A similar occurrence took place in May 2004, we arrived planning to see a movie, only to find all movie patrons and employees gathered outside a theater because of some type of evacuation. When we asked employees what the situation was or how soon the theater would reopen, they similarly responded that they didn’t know and had no information about compensation. Clearly, the theater at *********** has some type of technical issues because the rest of the mall still had power – a multicinema should have some type of emergency power system because this has clearly been a problem multiple times. And again, if this occurs regularly, your employees should be better equipped to deal with the needs of customers – this problem should have been addressed the first time it happened. I don’t know what your staff is there for if they cannot respond to problems or at least be able to get in touch with a supervisor – your management is at fault for not being available. I do not wish to criticize your young clerk staff, but your management for not properly informing them of how to deal with a situation like this or at least making sure employees know what to do or who to contact should a situation like this arise.
The increasing prices at Regal ******** make it one of the more expensive theaters in the area - and one of few that does not offer a student discount. It is rare that any of my friends (all college students) will go to the Regal Cinema at ********* at all due to the high prices, and especially not at night when the rates are higher. We are reluctant to want to go more frequently after this experience, if at all.
So, basically, we're taking our ticket stubs back any time we damn please, and if we don't get in for free, we'll pay, and then send this letter to the company for six free passes. Also, what if one of us had lost our stub? We were clearly there, exiting the theater, and if they had just taken care of this at the time, it wouldn't have been a problem.