Like I was saying....

Q: Blockbuster vs. Netflix…Is one obviously better?

A: YES! 

I’m a movie guy. I like to watch a lot of movies. And now I’ve gotten into a few tv shows that I’m having to play catchup because I missed them when they first came on television (like 24 and Prison Break). So DVD’s are awesome.

I remember when I had a friend first subscribe to Netflix. He said it was pretty neat w/ a decent turn around time. But I still was living in Amory and would just go to the local Movie Gallery.

But after moving to Clinton where we have a Blockbuster, I decided to give them a try with the “online rental” system. In comparing them to NetFlix, Blockbuster would let you rent three out at a time like Netflix but at a $3 less (14.99 vs. $17.99)…but, you also got two coupons a month to be able to rent free movies from the store. Slam dunk, right?

Blockbuster OnlineSo we go w/ Blockbuster Online. It seems to work pretty well. Sometimes a movie would get delayed or something. And right after Blockbuster had lots and lots of commercials on during the Super Bowl a year ago, movies would sometimes be labeled Short or Long Wait. But they soon added distribution centers and it seemed to even out and be fairly quick again.

While Netflix kept their prices the same, Blockbuster raised theirs to match those of Netflix. But the two free rentals a month still tipped the balance towards Blockbuster. But then Blockbuster reduced that to only ONE free movie a week. That made me start to look over the fence at Netflix. But then Blockbuster pulled, what for me, is the clincher.

Before, after watching a movie, I would have to send it back in the envelope in order for them to process the return. And then they’d send out the next movie in my queue. So from the time I placed it in the mail box to when I’d get a new one it would be about four days, sometimes five. BUT….now I can drive it to my local Blockbuster, grab a new movie off the shelf, exchange it for FREE…and once they scan the returned movie there in store the distribution center goes ahead and sends me the new one.

It boils down to this. Instead of me waiting about four or five days for a new movie. I can get one that day, and then get another one in the mail in about two or three days. How is that not a perfect system?

Now some people will complain that the system is flawed because the whole point of online movie rentals is so you don’t have to worry w/ going in the stores. But I drive by Blockbuster pretty much every day when I’m out in town.  It’s not an inconvenience at all. Others will say that Blockbuster’s selection doesn’t have the foreign and independent films that Netflix does. Maybe not, but I’ve never gone searching for one that I couldn’t find. Never. So I guess I’m not indie enough for some people.

So…hands down, Blockbuster Online is a much better deal for me and my family. Netflix isn’t bad…but not as good.  Jason, on the other hand, feels strongly about the Blockbuster/Netflix dilemma and believes Netflix is the better option. But I think his whole opinion is skewed by his “in store” sign-up experience. Give him a read and see what you think.


  1. j-dub

    to me it is a no brainer as well… Jason could’ve paid the 9.94$ and made up for it with the three in-store free he would’ve gotten by returning his first WEEK’S mailed movies in the store… and honestly his argument doesn’t hold water. He couldn’t have walked into a netflix store and walked out with three movies for free. But, oh well, such is life.

    BTW, i do blockbuster’s cheapest plan and i think it’s better than the standard one. $8 / month… i only get three movies in mail per month, and only one out at a time, but that is still 7 movies (3 in mail, 3 when i return to the store, 1 coupon) per month. Thats more than 1 per week… which is plenty for us. When we used to do the standard, we probably only watched about 1-2 a week anyway.

  2. Blake

    We actually moved down to the middle plan. Two out at a time, and unlimited per month. Seems to work fine for us.

  3. Christopher

    I am a Blockbuster subscriber as well. The Total Access feature of taking things back to the store pretty much sealed the deal from me switching.

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