Costing £8.99 a month for a Standard Membership, with a £29.99 joining fee, and £11.99 a month for a Premium Membership, with a £34.99 joining fee, the new membership scheme will enable those who join to enjoy the same benefits as the Standard and Premium Annual Passes. Only available to buy online, all memberships are subject to a 12 month minimum contract, starting from the date of purchase, after which customers will continue to make monthly payments with the ability able to cancel their membership at any time following the initial 12 month period by giving Merlin the applicable notice.
The total cost of the new membership scheme for the first 12 months works out cheaper than purchasing a new Standard or Premium Annual Pass at full price, with the Standard Membership coming in at £137.87 (compared to £179 for the Standard Annual Pass), and the Premium option totalling £178.87 (compared to £219 for the Premium Annual Pass). However, unlike the Merlin Annual Pass, the Monthly Membership Scheme does not offer the option to purchase a family membership at a reduced cost, meaning some families may not receive the benefit of the discounted cost of the Monthly Membership.
This is not the first time Merlin Entertainments have introduced a pay monthly membership scheme for their annual passes. Back in July 2013 Merlin launched ‘Merlin Membership’ for the first time, offering a similar product to this most recent offering, however without the joining fee. The scheme proved to be short lived, with Merlin ceasing to accept new Merlin Memberships in late 2014, before the scheme was revoked completely at the end of September 2016 with those still a part of the Merlin Membership scheme offered the opportunity to purchase a Merlin Annual Pass at a reduced rate instead. Many people will be pleased to see the return of the Monthly Membership Scheme, especially those who may have struggled to afford the full cost of the Merlin Annual Pass up front.
What are your thoughts on the return of Monthly Memberships? Will you be taking up the option of being able to pay monthly for your Annual Pass? Make sure you share your thoughts over on the Attraction Source Forum.