Saturday, October 03, 2009

How To See Your Favorite Shows And Concerts For Less

This past week, just like tens of thousands of other fans, I went to see a major band that hails from Ireland. While our seats weren't great (apologies to my guest) I was wondering to myself how much people paid on average for their tickets, especially if they were sitting in a better location. 

When a major act comes to town, quite often they are beholden to one ticket distribution seller.  Since they are so big, I don't have a problem with calling out Ticketmaster for a being a bit ridiculous with all of their fees they add on: convenience fee, facility fee, parking fee, fee fee and so on.  By the time it's all said and done, your $30 ticket is now closer to $40 or more.  And, since if you haven't figured out that I live in DC, the large arena where a certain football team plays also has the audacity to include a parking fee on every ticket regardless if you drive or not.  We didn't drive and it cost us an extra $16 total for the privilege of being there.

The tip and lesson here is that there are alternative ticket vendors for shows that you may or may not know of.  Sites like Stubhub, Tickets Now and umpteen others sell the same tickets to your favorite bands, sports teams, etc.  You may ask, so what?  Well, these sites also accept coupon codes which are very readily available to find on the web.  The next time you are about ready to buy your ticket, check to see if there is an alternative site that accepts coupon codes.  It may be 10%, but that's more money for food, etc.  Of course there is also craigslist or eBay but I would be cautious about using them.  Scams abound where tickets are fraudulent, for the wrong date, etc. and you don't want to deal with trying to get your money back.  Go with a reputable seller, save money, and be assured that your ticket is valid.

And, while you may be concerned that your favorite band may sell out quickly, check with your credit card company, or if you work for a large corporation to see if they have a concierge service.  I know that Visa has such a service.  They may be able to get you hard to find tickets that are sold out, and maybe even for less.