A socially distant cinema experience that we hope is here to stay…

News of a drive-in cinema concept opening in Dubai appeared to come out of nowhere. While many residents assumed they’d have to wait a little while longer before enjoying their favourite pastime again, a new way to social distance while watching the latest blockbuster has now arrived – Vox Cinemas Drive-In.

After receiving clear instructions on how to enter the Mall of Emirates car park, we arrived ahead of the scheduled 7.30pm start time. Pulling up, there was an abundance of mask-wearing staff giving clear directions toward the red-carpeted entrance.

We roll down the left window to have our QR code scanned (top marks for the paperless tickets), while through the right window we’re offered soft drinks and snacks.

Bags of popcorn are included with cute handwritten movie quotes, as well as a generous portion of nachos, a big bag of M&Ms and bottles of Pepsi. The selection more than enough for two people to enjoy throughout the film.

A parking space is allocated based on the height of your car so everyone can easily see the huge screen, which has been erected under the Ski Dubai slope.

The movie’s audio is transmitted through a radio channel which was indicated on the screen before it started. While our car doesn’t have the most cutting-edge speakers, the booming surround sound effect makes you feel as though you’re really in the cinema.

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The best part for us, was the realisation that some of the most problematic things about going to a real cinema (such as having to turn your phone off, not being able to speak to the person next to you, or having someone kick the back of your chair) can all be avoided with the privacy of a drive-in cinema.

You’re free to take your shoes off, get comfy, chat about the movie, and even reply to a text with no repercussions. The biggest disturbance you might face is if another driver forgets to turn their headlights off, but the staff are quick to rectify this.

Despite bringing in the concept in light of social distancing measures, we really hope the drive-in cinema is here to stay. Offering a bit of variety into Dubai’s things to do scene is a welcome action, especially while many of our other favourite activities are still suspended.

Vox Cinemas Drive-In launches on Sunday May 17, with tickets priced per car at Dhs180+VAT, including the movie and plenty of snacks and soft drinks. A maximum of two people are allowed per car, with children aged three to 12 and adults over 60 not permitted.

Tickets on sale soon at uae.voxcinemas.comMovie showtimes will be revealed every Monday.

Images: Provided