Why I’m NOT not going to Hoyts Sylvia Park to see The Bee Movie

January 2, 2008

Just sent this to the good people at Hoyts Cinemas. Hopefully they’ll respond.

Hi there, I’ve just tried to book a family pass to go and see the Bee Movie at Hoyts in Sylvia Park. I really like the cinema complex you have there – the staff are friendly and the lounges are great. I like that I can see a grown up movie and get treated like a grown up. Thanks for that.

Your online booking process is, sadly, not up to that standard. Firstly, there’s no way of booking a movie from either the home page or any of the pages that tell you about either the movies or the times. A simple “Book a seat” button would help on any of these pages.

Secondly, once you do find the “book a seat” page (cunningly hidden on the cinema profile page) there’s no option to buy a family pass, only “adult”, “child”, “student” or “senior”.

About that time I gave up and called the theatre on the number provided, only to get a recorded message telling me I can’t book on the phone and hey, why don’t I use your website. I can’t, that’s why.

Finally I tried reading through the FAQ to see if that had any information to help me. Sadly, while the information was accurate, the only phone number I found should I have any problems with my booking was an Australian phone number (“I get a “Cannot connect to Venue Server” error. What do I do?
If you get the above error message it means that either a connection to the venue cannot be established or the venue’s ticketing system is down. Please contact eBooking on 1300 304 370 during business hours or the venue in question.”)

which really doesn’t give me much faith in the security of the whole process. If I can’t call should something go wrong with my booking, why would I put my credit card details in in the first place?

I’d really like to take my family to see The Bee Movie tomorrow at your theatre but unfortunately I can’t. I’d end up spending $50 instead of the advertised $35 for a family pass. Instead, I’m going to have to go to the theatre in town and that’s run by your opposition. They charge $40 for a family pass, the staff are unpleasant and the carpet smells bad. But I can book a ticket with them and that’s the main thing.

I just got an auto-response back:

Thank you for your email


Please be aware to expect delays to responses during the Christmas period. We will endeavour to respond to all enquiries as soon as possible.The Hoyts customer service team will be back on the Monday 7 January.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

Hoyts Customer Service Team

So we’ll see what happens next.


Just got this from James the national operations manager who responded in a record-breaking  40-some minutes:

Thanks for your email. Sorry to hear about the problems that you have experienced with the web site. I can’t offer to fix those overnight, but I would like to get you sorted with some tickets for the Bee movie at Sylvia Park for tomorrow

If you can let me know how many tickets you need (I assume it was 2 adults, 2 children , ie a family pass?) and for what session and a contact number I will get it sorted for you.

I’ve emailed James back to say thanks for the incredibly speedy response. Rarely have I seen such prompt service and considering that today’s still officially a holiday, I’m well pleased. Companies can make mistakes. That’s not the issue – it’s the putting right (as someone much wiser than I once said) that makes for real customer service. Well done, James.


2 Responses to “Why I’m NOT not going to Hoyts Sylvia Park to see The Bee Movie”

  1. Mysterious Dave Mather Says:

    I enjoyed Ray Liotta.

  2. Anonymus Says:


    this is great.. i tried to go online and book tickets for Indian Jones.. couldnt even find the BOOK ONLINE button. i typed up book tickets online at hoyts sylvia park and this was the first search result that showed up!!

    i have had the same complain agains Hoyts.. tried callin up the number listed there and just like you, got a recorded message… emailed them as well.. but atleast you got a reply, i got NOTHING back!!!!

    now im contemplating if i should fully ditch hoyts and look for a substitute cinema!!

    but im glad that you brought it up and listed it online too!!

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