Drive-in Movie Theater Market Share, Analysis, Trends by 2030; COVID-19 Pandemic Set to Drop Sales

Drive-in Movie Theater Market: Introduction

  • The history of drive-in movie theaters dates back to 1930s. In 1932, the first drive-in movie theater was patented in Camden, New Jersey, U.S. A drive-in movie theater, sometimes also referred to as a drive-in cinema, operates similar to regular cinema theaters. However, operating costs of drive-in cinemas are relatively low, as they are in open area and do not involve air conditioning facilities like standalone cinema halls. A drive-in movie theater comprises a projection booth, a big outdoor screen, a concession stand, and a huge parking area for vehicles.

Key Drivers of the Global Drive-in Movie Theater Market

  • Rising consumer spending on recreational activities and growth in urban population are driving the demand for drive-in movie theaters across the world. Furthermore, young consumers are preferring drive-in movie theaters as an alternative to standalone or in-seat theaters. Technology advancement and rising consumer awareness in untapped markets are expected to boost the market in the near future.
  • Rise in disposable income in emerging economies is prompting consumers to spend on multiple entertainment alternatives. Modernization of drive-in theaters and increasing number of local players are attracting potential audiences to enjoy open-air cinemas in their own automobiles. Global movie theater chains are renovating old drive-in movie theaters with the use digital technology to target modern and young consumers.

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COVID-19 Pandemic to Offer Significant Opportunities in the Coming Years

  • Rules of social distancing during the pandemic have led to the resurgence of drive-in cinema in different parts of the world. Drive-in cinemas were widely preferred during lockdown days, as indoor cinema theaters were unable to operate due to the restrictions on mass gatherings.
  • Uncertainty in the vaccine programs and the introduction of new coronavirus strain in Europe and South Africa are anticipated to further promote the adoption of drive-in movie theaters over standalone theaters. For instance, in July 2024, The Philippines’ shopping mall chain SM Supermalls opened the country’s first drive-in theater near SM City Pampanga.

Asia Pacific to Become a Major Market for Drive-in Movie Theaters by 2030

  • Based on geography, the global drive-in movie theater market is classified into South America (SA), North America (NA), Europe (EU), Middle East & Africa (MEA), and Asia Pacific (APAC).
  • Country-level bifurcation of the North America market includes the forecast and analysis for the U.S., Canada, and Rest of North America. Country-level analysis and forecast for the Europe market includes historical and forecast analysis for the drive-in movie theater market in the U.K., Germany, France, and Rest of Europe. Country-level analysis and forecast for the Asia Pacific market includes major countries in the region such as India, China, Japan, and Rest of Asia Pacific. Middle East & Africa country-level analysis and forecast for the drive-in movie Theater Market includes GCC countries, South Africa, and Rest of Middle East & Africa. The South America drive-in movie theater market is categorized into Brazil, and Rest of South America.
  • Large customer base, rising middle class population, technology advancement, and changing demographics in developing economies are driving the demand for drive-in movie theaters in Asia Pacific. For instance, global movie theater companies such as Carnival, PVR, and INOX are planning to launch drive-in cinemas in key markets in India such as Delhi, Pune, and Bangalore.

Key Players Operating in the Global Market

Key industry players are investing in the new technology and advanced infrastructure. Investment in innovative theater designs, selection of unique locations, and digital transformation are key business strategies adopted in the global drive-in movie theater industry. Partnership and collaboration with established resorts and event companies enables companies to penetrate untapped markets.

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Some of the major companies identified in the global drive-in movie theater market are:

  • AMC Entertainment Holdings, Inc.
  • Cineworld Group Plc
  • Cinemark Holdings, Inc.
  • Cinepolis
  • Cineplex Inc.
  • Vue International
  • CGV Cinemas
  • Wanda Film Holding Co
  • Alamo Drafthouse Cinemas
  • The Decurion Corporation

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