The TRUE Cost of a “Free” Red Box Rental

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Free Redbox?One thing you should know about me is that I love movies. And a big part of that love is my love for Netflix — though they are straining the bonds of our singularity with continued price increases and surcharges and the like; seriously you are On Notice, Netflix; I don’t know that I can stand by my man through yet another rate hike! — and my equal distaste and general “I hope I live long enough to dance on your grave! I DANCE ON YOUR GRAVE!!!”-ness of feelings towards Blockbuster. (They seem to be like some Nosferatu with their in-and-out of bankruptcy. Die already, you unholy monster!)

What this leaves in a Sciacca emotional purgatory is Redbox. Not quite a Netflix, not quite a Blocksuccubuster. I guess you can say I’m spiritually agnostic towards the Redbox; I neither embrace nor condemn them. I believe they exist, and welcome others love for them, but I’m unconverted.

So, my ninth degree coupon black belt sensei of a wife, Dana, has signed me up for this text thing where like once a month Redbox will text me a coupon with a code for a free movie rental. (And by “free” they mean a $1 regular movie, not a $1.50 Blu-ray movie. They do, however, extend the largesse of giving you a $1 credit towards a Blu-rental.) I have unlimited text messaging, so it literally costs me nothing to accept these messages. And, the incoming text alert always fills you with that sense of, “Ah! Someone DOES care enough to send the very best!” so there is that momentary endorphin rush before you see that it is just a 6-digit Redbox code.

And while driving home one night, I figured out that this “free” Redbox movie is actually costing me about $9.60.

Click here to check out my math and see if renting that “free” movie is really worth it next time.

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