The Latin American influencers of Pokémon GO have published an open letter to Niantic, addressing the problematic price of tickets for events in the LATAM region. We usually cover news from the LATAM region at pokemongohub.net, but given the recent spike in ticketed events we wanted to expose this on our main site.
If you are not familiar with the subject, ticket prices in the LATAM region are much more expensive than in the rest of the world. The cost per dollar is the same, but the relative cost of the ticket compared to the standard of living is much higher than in the rest of the world. The entire campaign is promoted under the #PokemonGOLATAM hashtag on Twitter and other social media websites.
LATAM Open Letter on Ticket Prices
Hi Niantic, how are you doing? We hope everyone is doing well!
This year was full of financial successes for the game, which are reflected in the company’s profits, equivalent to more than a billion dollars according to Sensor Tower. But from the Pokemon GO LATAM Community, we would like to publicize a critical issue that we believe should be considered: the current cost of paid events in Pokemon GO.
We understand that the cost that we see in the store is the result of the exchange rate of dollars to the currency used in other regions. However, the price in dollars is much more accessible for other countries outside of Latin America.
To give you more context for what we’re trying to say, let’s use the Kanto Tour event as an example: In the countries of the region that sign this letter, the ticket has a cost between 5% and 7% of the minimum wage. That’s a lot! And it is that our economic situation has been conditioned by the different political and public health contexts that we live in.
Such a high cost will result in little involvement from our community, causing frustration and a feeling of being left out. We ask you to review the cost of tickets for the LATAM community, with a new cost closer to our reality. We truly believe that there will be many more players participating in events like these at a new and fair price. We also have some suggestions (see image below) that may be helpful for our problem.
We hope to wait for an answer.
Pokémon GO LATAM Trainers
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Regional pricing methodology
As you probably know, a common practice in the gaming industry is regional pricing, where prices are not set equivalent to the US dollar in different markets. This practice considers the local currency.
Many game companies implemented this strategy, selling more games as they reached a larger audience and making gamers happy on top of that. Some examples of video game companies that use this methodology are: Epic Games, Steam and Blizzard.
We know that some stores have strict rules that do not allow it, but we came up with a possible solution to this problem and we would like to hear your point of view on this proposal.
We know that the 100 Pokecoins pack is priced regionally using Apple’s “Alternate Tier A – $ 0.99”, which makes it possible for multiple players to purchase in-game items at a local and fair price, and we appreciate your efforts to enable that option in the in-game store.
Our proposal is to extend the same pricing methodology for new paid events, since this type of event seems to be a trend, considering the most recent events announced.
Tickets can be purchased directly with Pokecoins.
So a ticket to the Kanto event, which actually requires more than 2 days of work for a player to buy (considering the average salary for our region), would cost something like half a day of work.
Our opinion on the matter
I can only talk about Croatia, the country I am from, but I guess other European countries and North American states fall into the same bucket. Tickets for Pokémon GO events were never something we consider expensive. Not something that costs 5% to 7% of our minimum wage.
Kanto Tour ticket costs 12 USD, our minimum salary is 658 USD per month, which is equivalent to 1.8% of salary. That’s a fair and acceptable price for something, and in Croatia, $ 12 is something I’d spend in an afternoon having coffee and drinks if it weren’t for COVID.
Personally, I feel that LATAM Trainers and Influencers are completely within their rights here: the price is simply too high in many of the countries in the LATAM region, including Brazil and Mexico, where the minimum wage is around 200-250 USD. watch this Statista page for a complete list of minimum wages in the LATAM region.
Even in Uruguay, which has the highest minimum wage in LATAM (430 USD), the cost is 2.7% of the wage, which is not negligible when taking into account the additional costs associated with gambling.
We await Niantic’s response on this, but we hope LATAM players will get a price adjustment.