• Sweden's news in English

Swedish cinema charges baby for viewing film

TT/Rebecca Martin · 2 Mar 2012, 07:24

Published: 02 Mar 2012 07:24 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

“Are they kidding me? I couldn’t believe my ears when I was told we needed a ticket for the baby,” said mother Jana Lillepea to local paper Västerbottenskuriren.

The family had travelled the 55 kilometres from Vindeln where they live, to larger town Umeå to see a children’s movie. According to the paper they had purchased tickets for everyone except the baby.

However, the family hadn’t reflected much over baby Albin not having a ticket, as he was not expected to get anything out of the show.

But the ticket controller didn’t agree. And the cinema backed her up, saying that they need to be able to show how many people are on the premises, both for fire safety purposes and to inform the film company that produced the movie.

“In general we are not certain that bringing an infant to the cinema is a good idea. It can be a disturbance to the other customers," said Thomas Runfors, spokesperson for Swedish cinema giant SF Bio to news agency TT.

Story continues below…

The hullabaloo regarding his attendance didn’t however disturb baby Albin, who slept all the way through his first cinema visit, according to the paper.

TT/Rebecca Martin (news@thelocal.se)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

09:27 March 2, 2012 by nolikegohome
charging for a baby to see a movie is stupid but on the other hand a baby could be disturbing to the customers that is quite true. I have been to several conferences in sweden where babies were causing a hell of a disturbance with the crying and screaming. And nobody dared to say anything to the mom. which i think is quite selfish on the mothers part.
09:42 March 2, 2012 by robban70226
Im sure she did not got charged for viewing the movie but if the mother want to use one seat for the baby it is only fair that she pay for it.
09:48 March 2, 2012 by mr.user

"In general we are not certain that bringing an infant to the cinema is a good idea. It can be a disturbance to the other customers," said Thomas Runfors, spokesperson for Swedish cinema giant SF Bio to news agency TT.

But, apparently, you are certain that paying the ticket for the infant IS a good idea!

10:02 March 2, 2012 by Svenny Brogarth
Dam right they should buy a ticket for the baby. I have an 18 month old and he has not gone yet for the risk of disturbing other viewers, If i was in the cinema and a 6 week old screamed the whole way through the movie i would ask for my money back.

However paying for a babies plane ticket when they dont get a seat annoys me.
10:15 March 2, 2012 by mr.user
I don't see the relation in between paying and disturbing other viewers.

If baby crys, he/she will leave the room as well as an adult.

But baby is not getting any service from the cinema and should not pay the ticket.
10:19 March 2, 2012 by SimonDMontfort
The story is hardly surprising as there is such a stinginess about life in Sweden that I'm sure many Swedes would sell their own granny for 20 kronor.

But yes - it does seem surprising that somebody wants to take a baby in to see a film; I thought childcare was so wonderful here, and is one of the things we pay taxes for
10:37 March 2, 2012 by LMUD
Agree with mr.user.

They wanted to charge the baby for a seat, or charge for distrubing other viewers.
10:45 March 2, 2012 by eppie
A 6 week old is not disturbing other people. He sleeps, and when he wakes up he drinks, and then goes back to sleep again. And getting a seat for a 6 week old??? Are you crazy....what do you do? you just lay him down on a seat or so?
11:10 March 2, 2012 by Twiceshy
Assuming the baby is not occupying a seat, the right thing to do here would be to allow the baby in for free, with the condition that if the baby makes noise for any significant period the parents have to leave with the baby.
15:36 March 2, 2012 by calebian22
The right thing to do is to leave the baby at home, with a baby sitter. Having a baby should cramp your style. Dumb parents.
17:26 March 2, 2012 by hipersons1
@eppie and what does a baby do, exactly, when it wakes back up? Or feels hungry or thirsty? And how is that not disturbing to movie viewers??
19:19 March 2, 2012 by johan rebel
I suppose the cinema could have made an exception if the mother had proof the baby was blind and deaf, and therefore unable to enjoy the show.
10:15 March 3, 2012 by Toffee_apple
For fire safety purposes I wonder if the ticket controller and other staff also need to buy tickets since they are also in the building. What a dumb excuse. Surely they make a note in their system that there's a baby in one of the cinemas or perhaps a non-paying patron. They must have to make a note of some kind if there are patrons in wheelchairs since they can't exactly run out of a cinema and down the stairs. Swedes always put up a rope to climb over. They never make exceptions, even just one.

Anyway, I find it strange that in a country like Sweden that is generally children/family friendly there are so few cinemas (just one in Stockholm for instance if it's still there) that have sessions where mothers are allowed to bring in their babies and children. It's common in other European countries and Australia I know. I went to a session years ago with a friend in Poland who had a baby at the time. There were a lot of babies in there but I still got to hear the movie without a problem. Mothers could park their prams/strollers at the side and there were a couple of change tables set up at the front of the cinema. When my kids were babies here in Sweden there was just one cinema near us in Stockholm but it only had sessions for mother and baby once a month with movies that were in the common cinema years ago. In Poland they were the latest movies , so I never bothered with the one here. I doubt it's still in business.
20:46 March 3, 2012 by StockholmSam
Just another in a long list of examples of poor customer service in Sweden.

Parents should not have been charged for the baby unless the baby was going to take up a seat. It really is that simple. As others have said, if the baby cries, the parent should be sensitive to the other paying customers and take the baby out of the theater; paying a fare for the baby does not relieve the parents of that responsibility. Neither does it satisfy other moviegoers when the baby screams.
23:33 March 3, 2012 by Antonito
A baby shouldn't be asked a ticket unless important reasons behind. Insurance for example. What would be case if a baby would have been in Globen and gets injured? I do not know how these things work but I would like to be clear about them. I thing SL solved this problem before. Perhaps cinemas can adopt the same policy.

I think parents with babies have full right to bring their babies with them. It is assumed however that parents have common sense and will take the baby outside if he/she starts disturbing other viewers.

I have never had a bad experience with babies crying in the cinema but with those who eat POP CORN. They are really annoying. I would prefer a baby crying for few seconds somewhere in the room than having a big rodent eating polystyrene during two hours. I think is time to divide rooms in two sections: Pop-corn-eaters and Non-pop-corn-eaters.
19:47 March 4, 2012 by Evander
Compromise: The baby gets in free, but if he desturbs viewers, he pays for their tickets.
09:17 March 5, 2012 by jamesblish
This has been the case for years. Because a woman was unaware, now it's suddenly "news". It's probably a safety precaution on the theatre's part, to prevent people from bringing the baby in in the first place. No one wants babies in theatres.
21:46 March 5, 2012 by dizzymoe33
Why would anyone bring their baby to a movie theater? The loud noises is so damaging to their young ears and it is so rude to sit there watching a movie that you have sold your first born for to buy a ticket to then hear a baby screaming!!! Come on people where is your Common Sense?!!!!!
21:34 October 11, 2012 by janeway
Noone in their right mind first travels 55 km to a major city and, secondly, brings a 6 week old baby into a movie theatre.

But the new sign of the times, is people getting violated (kränkta) all the time and ask for their 15 minutes of fame and/or monetary compensation.

And media is fast by jumping on the band wagon and by that constructing a nation of cry-babies (woe is me) that need help.

Stop catering to all those losers that can't function in society of today. Silence them by not giving them any sort of publicity. Not that media is going to follow my advice, since "cry foul"-stories seem to sell.
Today's headlines
Swedish photographer shot near Mosul
Hansen was being operated on in the Iraqi city of Erbil on Sunday. Photo: Nora Lorek/ TT

Paul Hansen, a photographer working for Swedish daily Dagens Nyheter, has sustained light injuries after being hit by what appears to be a sniper while covering the battle for the Isis-held city of Mosul in Iraq.

Trollhättan remembers school attack victims
'It was an attack on all of Sweden,' Education Minister Gustav Fridolin said. Photo: Thomas Johansson/ TT

Hundreds of people on Saturday turned out for a torchlight procession in the small town of Trollhättan in southwestern Sweden to honour the victims of last year’s deadly school attack there.

Sweden wants emission-free cars in EU by 2030
Photo: Jessica Gow/ TT

Sweden's environment minister on Saturday urged the European Union to ban petrol and diesel-powered vehicles from 2030.

Hundreds protest Swedish asylum laws
Around 1,000 people protested in Stockholm. Photo: Fredrik Persson/ TT

Hundreds of people on Saturday demonstrated in Stockholm and in many other parts of the country to protest Sweden’s tough new laws on asylum-seekers.

Dylan removes Nobel-mention from website
The American musician has more or less responded to the news with silence. Photo: Per Wahlberg

American singer-song writer Bob Dylan has removed any mention of him being named one of this year’s Nobel Prize laureates on his official website.

Refugee crisis
Asylum requests in Sweden down by 70 percent
Sweden's migration minister Morgan Johansson. Photo: Christine Olsson/TT

Sweden received 70 percent fewer requests for asylum in the period between January and September 2016 than it did during the same time last year, the country’s justice and migration minister Morgan Johansson has revealed.

The unique story of Stockholm's floating libraries
The Stockholm archipelago book boat. Photo: Roger Hill.

Writer Roger Hill details his journeys on the boats that carry books over Stockholm's waterways and to its most remote places.

Refugee crisis
Second Stockholm asylum centre fire in a week
The new incident follows a similar fire in Fagersjö last week (pictured). Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Police suspect arson in the blaze, as well as a similar incident which occurred last Sunday.

More misery for Ericsson as losses pile up
Ericsson interim CEO Jan Frykhammar presenting its third quarter results. Photo: Claudio Bresciani/TT

The bad news just keeps coming from the Swedish telecoms giant.

Facebook 'sorry' for removing Swedish cancer video
A computer displaying Facebook's landing page. Photo: Christine Olsson/TT

The social media giant had censored a video explaining how women should check for suspicious lumps in their breasts.

Sponsored Article
This is Malmö: Football capital of Sweden
Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Here's where it could snow in central Sweden this weekend
Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Blog updates

6 October

10 useful hjälpverb (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I think the so-called “hjalpverb” (auxiliary verbs in English) are a good way to get…" READ »


8 July

Editor’s blog, July 8th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hej readers, It has, as always, been a bizarre, serious and hilarious week in Sweden. You…" READ »

Sponsored Article
7 reasons you should join Sweden's 'a-kassa'
Angry elk chases Swede up a lamp post
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
The Local Voices
'Alienation in Sweden feels better: I find myself a stranger among scores of aliens'
People-watching: October 20th
The Local Voices
A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Swede punches clown that scared his grandmother
Sponsored Article
Swedish for programmers: 'It changed my life'
Fans throw flares and enter pitch in Swedish football riot
Could Swedish blood test solve 'Making a Murderer'?
Sponsored Article
Top 7 tips to help you learn Swedish
Property of the week: Linnéstaden, Gothenburg
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
Swedish school to build gender neutral changing room
People-watching: October 14th-16th
Sponsored Article
'There was no future for me in Turkey'
Man in Sweden assaulted by clowns with broken bottle
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
Nobel Prize 2016: Literature
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Watch the man who discovered Bob Dylan react to his Nobel Prize win
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Record numbers emigrating from Sweden
Sponsored Article
'There was no future for me in Turkey'
People-watching: October 12th
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
The Local Voices
'Swedish startups should embrace newcomers' talents - there's nothing to fear'
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
How far right are the Sweden Democrats?
Property of the week: Triangeln, Malmö
Sweden unveils Europe's first elk hut
People-watching: October 7th-9th
The Local Voices
Syria's White Helmets: The Nobel Peace Prize would have meant a lot, but pulling a child from rubble is the greatest reward
Missing rune stone turns up in Sweden
Nobel Prize 2016: Chemistry
jobs available