I recently wrote about one of my favourite ways to save money while eating out – Meerkat Meals. But the second (and original) part of the offer, Meerkat Movies, is just as good. It gives you 2 for 1 cinema tickets on Tuesdays and Wednesdays all year.
When you consider that the average spend per person at the cinema has nearly doubled since the start of the decade (according to Statistica, in 2018, the average spend was £19.35 per person!), deals like this offer some welcome relief. So that’s why I’m always keen to save a bit of money on those cinema outings!
In this post, I’ll run through what Meerkat Movies is, how it works and where to use it, as well as how to get it as cheaply as possible. I’ve also tried to cover most of the common questions people have about the Meerkat Movies 2 for 1 offer.
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What is Meerkat Movies?
Meerkat Movies is a 2 for 1 cinema promotion run by Compare the Market. It replaced EE Wednesdays in 2015 and can be used on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Compare the Market used to offer free meerkat toys but replaced them with the Meerkat Meals and Movies offer.
Check out the fun video below for an intro from Sergei and Aleksandr…
How to get Meerkat Movies
To get the Meerkat Movies offer, all you need to do is buy a qualifying product through Compare the Market and accept the offer. Once accepted, you get both 2 for 1 Meerkat Movies and Meerkat Meals for a whole year.
In fact, I got it for just £1.01 using this simple hack originally shared by MoneySavingExpert.
When I signed up, I was originally going to go for a credit card application (I needed a new one at the time), so this would have got me Meerkat Movies for free.
But before going ahead I checked on TopCashback* and found I could get £10 cashback on the deal I wanted. For more about TopCashback check out my full review. It’s also worth checking Quidco* too as they offer cashback on multiple Compare the Market policies as well.
So, I decided to go with MoneySavingExpert’s suggestion, which was travel insurance for a single one-night policy. The top 3 quotes all came in at £1.01, so I got 1 year of 2 for 1 movies and meals for a quid. Obviously, these prices will vary from person to person but it’s a pretty cheap way of getting the offer.
What Products Qualify for Meerkat Movies?
To qualify for the 2 for 1 Meerkat Meals and Movies offer you just need to either buy or switch any of the products below:
- Buy Insurance – this includes Car, Bike or Van Insurance, Home Insurance (Building and / or Contents), Pet Insurance, Travel Insurance, Landlord Insurance, Life Insurance, Business, Shop and Professional Insurance
- Complete a Credit Card, Loan, Mobile Phone or SIM application
- Switch your energy supplier or broadband, telephone or TV provider
How Does Meerkat Movies Work?
Meerkat Movies works by giving you a weekly Meerkat code that you can use for your 2 for 1 cinema tickets. To use it though, first, you’ll need to download the app on your phone at either the app store or on Google Play. Once you’ve purchased a qualifying product and signed up, you’ll get the offer in the Meerkat app.
How do I get my Meerkat Movies code?
Getting the Meerkat code is pretty simple. All you need to do is:
- Open the Meerkat App on your phone
- Click on the Meerkat Movies tab on the main screen
- The app will then tell you how long you’ve got the offer for. To reveal your weekly Meerkat Code all you need to do is click on the little 2 for 1 cinema ticket icon.
This gives you your 2 for 1 code for the week.
To use your code, you can either use the app to book seats at participating cinemas online. Or you can show your code at the box office. When I used my code as Odeon you can enter the code when buying your tickets at the automated ticket machine – something I wasn’t able to do when I used Tastecard Plus.
Which Cinemas Accept Meerkat Movies?
You can use Meerkat Movies at several of the cinema chains including Odeon, Vue, Cineworld, Showcase, Reel, Empire, Light and Picturehouse.
The app has a handy feature that uses your location to bring up your nearest cinemas. As you scroll through the cinemas nearest to you the meerkat App tells you if it’s eligible for 2 for 1 cinema offer or not.
One of my frustrations with the app though, is that although it tells you which cinemas are 2 for 1 eligible, it doesn’t give you the cinema’s terms and conditions (as Meerkat Meals does). This means you need to double-check with your chosen cinema.
Not to worry though, as I’ve rounded up the terms for the main chains below.
Using Meerkat Movies at Odeon
You can use the offer at Odeon cinemas by either:
- Booking online or using the Odeon app. You enter your Meerkat code in the “Your Order” Step
- Presenting your Meerkat Movies code at the box office or by entering it at the self-serve counter when prompted for a code.
The code works with student prices too as this is classed as a ticket type rather than a promotional discount.
The offer only applies to standard screenings and seats. You can use the Meerkat code for IMAX screenings, premium seats or 3D screenings but you’ll need to pay the difference in price.
The Meerkat code works at all Odeon cinemas in the UK except for BFI IMAX and The Lounge at Whitleys.
Meerkat Movies at Vue
You can use at Vue Cinemas when either booking online or by presenting the code at the cinema to a member of staff. Additional supplements are chargeable on premiere seating, 3D films and auditorium experiences. Online bookings have a 75p fee per ticket.
Using Meerkat Movies at Cineworld
Again, you can use the deal with Cineworld when either booking online or presenting the code at the box office. As with other cinemas, the deal applies to standard seats. You can use it with 3D, IMAX, Superscreen, Impact, D-Box and 4DX, but an uplift charge applies to each customer, including the customer with the free ticket.
One big bonus with Cineworld though is for Cineworld Unlimited cardholders. The Cineworld Unlimited card counts as a pre-paid ticket meaning the second ticket is free.
The offer is available at all Cineworld locations with the only exclusions being The Screening Rooms in Cheltenham, Glasgow Science Centre, Cineworld Dublin and Cineworld Jersey.
Meerkat Movies at Showcase Cinemas
Meerkat Movies is available at Showcase Cinemas or Showcase Cinema de Lux venues. But there are a few more restrictions. For example, you can’t use the offer when booking online, Meerkat Movies is only available for tickets purchased at the Box office.
The offer’s also unavailable for screenings in the Directors Hall, IMAX or for gallery seating. You can use it for 3D and XLR or XPlus screenings but will need to pay an upcharge for both tickets.
Meerkat Movies at Empire Cinemas
Empire Cinemas accept Meerkat Movie codes, but the offer can’t be used on their “SAVERDAY Tuesday” which has ticket prices from £4.50.
This means you can only use the offer on a Tuesday against their standard Adult and child ticket prices, not the discounted SAVERDAY price. So you’ll need to work out which is the best deal. You can also only redeem in the cinema on Tuesdays meaning you can’t use the offer for online bookings.
You can, however, book online for Wednesday showings which is slightly confusing if you ask me!
Meerkat Movies at Picturehouse
Like Showcase Cinemas, you can’t use Meerkat Movies when booking online at Picturehouse. You can only use the Meerkat code when booking over the phone or buying at the Box office. The offer is available at all Picturehouse cinemas in the UK though.
Exclusions include premieres, private screenings and “event cinema” such as live theatre, ballet and opera. Uplift charges apply to 3D and IMAX screenings.
Meerkat Movies at Reel Cinemas
You can use Meerkat Movies on either Tuesday or Wednesday at Reel Cinemas for standard seats in 2D and 3D showings. (Premiere seating will be charged on a 3D ticket though for the hire of 3D glasses).
You can book online with Reel but there’s a 60p booking fee for each ticket. The offer’s not valid for Event Cinema, VIP and Premiere Lounge.
You can’t get 2 for 1 on their Super Saver tickets (£4.50), but I’m not really surprised as that would be ludicrously cheap! Instead, you can buy specific Meerkat Movies tickets.
On the cinema I checked, these were £6.20 for an adult, £4.70 child and senior tickets, £5 for a teen ticket and £5.30 for student tickets. This is still incredibly cheap though as you can get 2 adult tickets for £6.20, just £3.10 each!!!
Light Cinemas are a bit of a mishmash when it comes to the Meerkat Movies offer, with some locations accepting the offer and others not. Luckily there aren’t that many venues, so I’ve broken down the current policies of each location below.
Addlestone: Not accepted
Sheffield: Not accepted
Bolton: Accepted, but only on films starting after 12 noon.
Bradford: Not accepted
Cambridge: Accepted, but you can’t book online or reserve your seat
New Brighton: Accepted, but you can’t book online or reserve your seat
Stockport: Not accepted
Thetford: Not accepted
Walsall: Accepted, but only on films starting after 12 noon.
Wisbech: Not accepted
Cinema Chains that don’t accept Meerkat Movies
Everyman and Curzon don’t accept Meerkat Movies. It’s always best to check the app as well to make sure your local cinema is listed as 2 for 1 eligible before heading off!
How Many Tickets can you buy with Meerkat Movies?
This is a common question, but unfortunately, you can’t. According to Compare the Markets terms and conditions:
“You may claim only one Meerkat Movies Code per week and each code can only be used once. Your code is only valid for one screening on either Tuesday or Wednesday.”
You get the cheapest ticket free. So, for example, if you buy one adult ticket and one child ticket, you’ll get the child’s ticket free with your code.
Don’t despair though if there’s more than two of you going to the cinema. You can sign up for a Tastecard as well that gets you discounted tickets – there’s no cap on these either. The discount isn’t as good as the 2 for 1 Cinema deal, but it works 7 days a week. Plus, you can always use the two offers together of there’s more than 2 of you going to the cinema.
Can you Use Meerkat Movies and Meerkat Meals on the same day?
Yes, you can use both Meerkat Movies and Meals on the same day. You can use your Meerkat Movies code on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, and the Meerkat Meals offer can be used from Sunday through to Thursday. So if you’re heading off to the cinema to use you Movies code you can grab a bite to eat and get 2 for 1 on your food too – Bonus!
What are the Alternatives to Meerkat Movies?
The main alternative that I’ve used is Tastecard Plus. It doesn’t give you quite such a good deal (i.e. 2 for 1 cinema tickets) but it does give you a decent discount at the cinema. One of the big plus points for Tastecard is that you can use it 7 days a week rather than just on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
That’s why I have both – if I’m going to the cinema on a Tuesday or Wednesday, I use Meerkat Movies, any other day I use Tastecard Plus* to get discounted tickets. You can also get upto 40% off with a Gourmet Society membership.
Is it Worth Getting?
Most definitely. When you can get a year’s access for just over £1, you only need to visit the cinema once for it to be worthwhile. So, I’d recommend just getting it when you know you’re planning on doing a cinema trip. Don’t forget you’ll also get 2 for 1 meals with the app to which makes it even more worthwhile.
Have you tried Meerkat Movies yet? How much do you save each year using it? I’d love to hear in the comments below.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you book with Meerkat Movies?
You don’t have to book to use your Meerkat Movies Code, but if your booking online you add the code in your order section. Or if your booking over the phone you can quote your code at the time of booking.
Can you use Meerkat Movies with an Unlimited Card?
Yes, the Cineworld Unlimited card can be used with Meerkat Movies. Your unlimited card counts as a paid-for ticket meaning the second ticket is free. Unfortunately Odeon Limitless doesn’t work with Meerkat Movies though.
Can I Use Meerkat Movies Online?
Yes, you can use Meerkat Movies when booking online but not at all cinemas, and an extra booking fee usually applies. You can book online with your Meerkat code at Odeon, Cineworld, Vue Cinemas, Empire (on Wednesdays only), but not at Showcase Cinemas, Picturehouse, Light Cinemas or Empire Cinemas on Tuesdays.
This can vary by cinema and independents will have their own terms too, so it’s always best to check your local cinema’s terms first.