Cinemas across the UK closed their doors to the public in March in a bid to slow the spread of coronavirus - including 90 Cineworld branches.
Now, Cineworld has announced its intention to reopen all of its branches to the public as lockdown restrictions begin to ease across the UK to varying degrees.
This is everything you need to know.
When will Cineworld reopen?
In an announcement published on Thursday 28 May, Cineworld said: “Cineworld currently anticipates that government restrictions related to cinemas will be lifted in each of its territories by July.
“Subject to this and confirmation of the schedule for film releases, Cineworld anticipates the reopening of all its cinemas in July.”
In England, leisure facilities like cinemas will be able to open in phase three, according to the government's 50-page dossier outlining the approach to lifting lockdown.
Our Plan to Rebuild: The UK Government’s COVID-19 recovery strategy states that this step will be no earlier than 4 July.
In Scotland, the route map that outlines the phased approach to lifting lockdown procedures puts the reopening of cinemas in phase three.
Phase three of the route map states: “Museums, galleries, libraries, cinemas open, subject to physical distancing and hygiene measures.”
There has been no confirmed date for when phase three will begin in Scotland.
Will there be social distancing measures in place?
In the statement, Cineworld said: “Cineworld has put in place procedures to ensure a safe and enjoyable cinema experience for its employees and customers.”
No specific details of these measures were revealed in Cineworld’s statement, but social distancing measures could include things like:
- Operating cinema screens with a reduced capacity, spreading viewers out so they aren’t sitting next to each other
- Floor markers to outline socially distant queuing
- Perspex screens installed at tills
- Increased cleaning between movie showings
This however has not been confirmed.
Will my Cineworld gift cards still be valid?
Cineworld said that it would be “extending the membership of all My Cineworld Plus accounts retrospectively once we reopen equivalent to the total duration of which we were closed”.
For gift cards that have expired during this time as well, you can get in touch with the Cineworld customer service team once they have reopened and the gift card will be replaced for you.
All the Christmas Gift Boxes that were set to expire in June will not be extended for the period of time that the cinemas were closed. This is the same for all other Cineworld gift boxes that were purchased ahead of the closures.
For those with complimentary tickets, or retail voucher codes, that have now expired, you should get in touch with the customer service team who will look into replacing these for you.
What about my Cineworld Unlimited membership?
A Cineworld Unlimited membership allows you to see as many films as you like, and get snack and drink discounts, for £18.40 a month.
All payments and memberships were frozen from 17 April.
Any payments taken during the period of closure will be credited to your Unlimited membership account.