What If Your Family Is Not a Four-Pack

Who’s idea was it to package four tickets to an event (usually with a meal of some sort) as a “Family Four Pack”? Probably some genius marketer. I can say that because I used to be in marketing. Ostensibly to marketers “family” means two adults and two kids. Which means that to get a deal on tickets (it is most often four tickets, four meals, four drinks). What happens if you really only need three? You can’t break down that ticket rate to $22 each (using the example of $88 for a four pack). I am a deal hunter – but when I have to spend extra to get a discount…it’s not a deal. Even television shows seem to be getting this right more and more. Sometimes “family” is a divorced mom with two kids (or a blended family, or extended family, or…)

So here is my dilemma. I get invited to things from time to time and I’m offered a family four pack. There are three of us (I’m divorced and have two kids). That is where the fighting usually ensues. My kids argue over who got to bring the extra friend last time or even if it is appropriate for that particular gender (really even if it is my son’s turn I’m pretty sure that he would not want to bring one of his teen friends to Disney’s Princesses on Ice). So far, I have let them be the one with the extra friend – not me. Some times we let the ticket go because I don’t feel like driving in circles to take a friend home late at night.

So really marketers – are we really not a family because there are only three of us? What about those families that have more kids? Who do they sit at home? The other adult? Which child has to sit this one out? Usually the marketing genius has also booked the entire section for families – meaning there are no additional tickets available anywhere near where the family section is. Do you sit one in a different side of the theater/auditorium/stadium just so they can see it too?