Is the Entertainment book actually worth it?

You may be wondering where the Entertainment book went or if it’s still around. Well, it had a bit of a revamp in 2019, it’s now fully digital and called an Entertainment Membership.

What is an Entertainment Membership?
It’s essentially a membership you pay for that gives you access to deals and discounts on a variety of things. The first thing to know is that it’s not only about entertainment. Discounts are available for dining, shopping, travel and attractions, and for services such as parking, gym memberships and beauty services.

Leading airlines such as British Airways, Jetstar and Etihad often have deals just for Entertainment Membership holders.

Read: Five ways to bag a bargain when you shop

Membership options
There are three membership options available, spanning either 12 or 24 months.

The Single City option is $69.99 and is a one-year membership where you receive discounts in one city of your choice in Australia or New Zealand.

The Multi City membership unlocks all 20 cities and provides thousands of offers for $119.99 for one year.

The Multi Plus is the most expensive of the three options at $229.99 but is a two-year membership, again giving you access to all 20 cities.

One selling point is that 20 per cent of every Entertainment Membership sale goes to the non-profit organisation of your choice – be it your local school, community group or a registered charity.

Where can I use the discounts?

Australia

  • Adelaide
  • Brisbane and Sunshine Coast
  • Cairns, Palm Cove and Port Douglas
  • Canberra
  • Darwin
  • Geelong and Ballarat
  • Gold Coast and Northern NSW
  • Hobart and Surrounds
  • Launceston, North West Tasmania and surrounds
  • Melbourne
  • Newcastle, Central Coast and Hunter
  • Perth
  • Sydney
  • Townsville
  • Wollongong, the South Coast and Southern Highlands.

New Zealand

  • Auckland
  • Christchurch, Canterbury and Nelson
  • Dunedin, Invercargill and Queenstown
  • Waikato and Bay of Plenty
  • Wellington and Manawatu.

How to use your membership
Users can now search and use the discounts straight from their phone, wherever they are.

The program still offers two-for-one deals and discounts up to 50 per cent on a range of purchases and experiences, but you no longer receive a physical book to flip through.

This is a positive for many people, but a huge drawback for others. Many current reviews are saying that the app is poorly designed and hard to navigate while others rave about how great it is to always have their discounts in their pockets.

The secret to making use of the membership though is to use it. So essentially, you have to spend to save.

Read: Money-saving tips minimalists swear by

Let’s look at a hypothetical situation where a couple take out a one-year membership for Melbourne. They could recoup the cost of the $69.99 membership fee through the savings provided in as few as four outings. How long this takes depends on the number of times you go out each week or month.

If the couple visits the Enchanted Adventure Garden, they will receive one free admission, saving up to $35. Say they then head to Bottega for dinner, using the voucher for 25 per cent off their $120 meal. Another $30 saved.

The couple also needs to purchase a few summer essentials from The Iconic website. They log on and apply the 20 per cent discount to their basket, bringing the total down from $75 to $60.

Finally, a hair salon appointment that would normally cost $100 was reduced to $75 using the 25 per cent discount voucher.

So, the couple saves $105, but still spent $260.

This is where the catch lies. You need to spend to save, and you’re only really saving if you’re buying things you would have bought anyway and not just using the vouchers for the sake of using them.

Savings aren’t just for special days and nights out though, a 4 per cent discount on Supermarket Store eGift Cards, for example, could reduce the amount you’d typically spend on groceries in a week.

Also, the savings vary according to the city you select, so it’s important to check which discounts and outlets are available for your preferred city.

Read: Easy ways to save on your food shop as inflation soars

Shared memberships
Entertainment Membership can be shared with up to five family members or devices in your household.

To share membership, the new user will need to download the app. But it’s important to remember that membership is linked so once one person uses an offer it cannot be used again. ‍

Where can I buy it?
An Entertainment Membership can be purchased online from the website of your favourite non-profit organisation. You can also purchase directly from the Entertainment website and nominate your preferred charity upon checkout.

The cost is the same across each option.

Is it worth it?
It depends on your circumstances. If you like getting out to try new restaurants and experiences, it could save you a lot of money. And you might enjoy the feel-good factor of knowing you’re supporting a worthy cause.

But, a discount is only a discount if you are spending money on something you need or want; it can be easy to fall into the trap of going after deals just to make a saving.

Have you ever purchased the Entertainment book? What do you think of it now that it’s completely digital? Please let us know in the comments section below.

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Written by Ellie Baxter

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