The summer concert season is almost here, and if you love festivals or outdoor concerts — or if your favorite group is about to come into town — you’re probably wondering two things. First, how can you get tickets? Second, how can you save money on those tickets?
If you’re trying to get your Rolling Stones tickets, for example, you’ve probably noticed that they aren’t exactly cheap. A date night which includes a concert can be expensive for couples who don’t know the secrets. Here a few tips from expert concertgoers that will help you save money over the summer.
Understand the Ticket Market
The ticket market is divided into two parts: the primary market, and the secondary one. Buying on the primary market happens when you buy from the original source of the tickets, like the venue website, the box office, or primary authorized dealers.
The secondary market, on the other hand, are the resellers. Ticket search engines, secondary ticket sites, and scalpers all make up the secondary market. This does not mean the secondary market is more expensive than the primary one. According to a study by Seatgeek, a secondary reseller is the same price or even cheaper about 40% of the time.
Get Your Timing Right
Tickets tend to be the priciest right as they go on sale. If you’re buying tickets to a major act, bide your time and wait until the date is approaching, keeping an eye on the secondary markets. Tickets usually drop in price. (On the other hand, for small venues such as the Hard Rock Cafe, tickets will tend to go up in price, so buy yours early.)
Also, if an artist has multiple performances in the same location, the first show will tend to be the priciest.
Don’t Be Snobbish Over Seats
Many people look at “lawn seats” and think it will be like standing at the fence trying to get a glimpse of the show. But that often isn’t true. For many venues, lawn seats are an excellent experience. You may not get a “seat,” but you probably weren’t going to be sitting down much anyway. While it’s true you might hate the experience of lawn seats, if you haven’t tried it, go ahead — it’s plenty cheaper.
Take An Airline-Style Approach To Ticket Searching
Don’t watch just one website when you look around for tickets, use one of the search engines like Seatgeek or Seathound. These sites let you search across multiple sites.
Be Very Careful With Craigslist
The $20 tickets to a $100 concert you see listed on Craigslist aren’t a deal. Those tickets are fake. It’s hard to tell fakes from legit tickets on Craigslist, but never buy electronic tickets. Anyone can resell fakes if they aren’t in physical form. Keep in mind — if something is too good to be true, chances are it is.
Buy Direct From The Box Office
If you’re going to buy tickets right when they go on sale, you can often save a few dollars by avoiding websites such as Ticketmaster and buying directly from the venue box office. The box office usually won’t charge the service fees that the big websites do.