The allocation of time between leisure activities and work has been extensively analysed in academic literature. However, leisure time is limited and there may not be sufficient time to enjoy all the leisure activities desired. Hence, this article considers the allocation of time between substitute leisure activities. International football tournaments provide an opportunity to consider consumers’ preferences for watching football and films in a quasi-natural experimental setting. A trade-off between these leisure activities is identified using a difference-in-difference methodology. Using an original, four-country data set, a large and robust negative effect of mega sports events on cinema admissions is identified.