Trying to score Elton tickets
Recently, Elton John publically announced he will be doing one last final tour before retiring. As expected, these tickets have sold out extremely quickly...almost instantly...and are now reselling for insane prices. The demand for tickets was so high that Elton went and added extra shows in most of the major cities on his tour.
So in the Chicago area, he is playing two nights at the United Center this year. Those were the two original shows. Then, later he announced that due to such high demand, he is coming back for two more shows at the All State Arena in 2019. I ended up getting tickets to both United Center shows and one All State Arena show. So I’ll be at three of the four Chicago shows. Super excited to see him for the first (and last) time!
But yeah...it’s crazy. I believe today the tickets (from Ticketmaster) just went on sale to the public for the second wave of shows. To me, it’s crazy to think that potentially people are waiting for those tickets after they are already on sale on third-party sites, going for upwards of $500+ for a presale price of $280 a pop. There’s like absolutely zero chance of getting anything decent at this point. It’s just way too late.
Luckily, I pay close attention to my Ticketmaster emails and always take advantage of the American Express presale that they frequently offer. It took me about 30 minutes on the site, but I ended up scoring two really great 100 level seats for the second night at United Center. My mother and I will be attending, and we cannot wait. She is a huge fan and knows much more of his music catalog than I, but I also love his music (I just need to learn more before the shows). He’s a legend. I mean...it’s Sir Elton John.
Anyways, I am kind of torn when people get mad at resellers for taking advantage of events/concerts like this. Obviously, if it was Paul McCartney’s last tour and I for whatever reason didn’t get tickets for myself before they all got to third-party resellers...what does that mean about me as a fan and consumer of music and entertainment? Well, for one...I think it’s fair to say that I missed my chance to get the tickets at face value from Ticketmaster. I cannot realistically expect that. I have no right to at this point. Which is unfortunate and really sucks when you’re on a budget.
How to fix this? First, be sure you’re subscribed to Ticketmaster’s emails. It is also always helpful to have an American Express card or Citi card. Those are the two credit cards that I often see offering exclusive presale options to.
Also just pay more attention to the artists/activities you really value seeing and their touring activity and rumors about their upcoming schedules. More often than not, rumors are true because for most artists there are some crazy fans out there who are just “in the know” and somehow have access to information before it goes public.
Also, I feel there’s no shame in buying from a third-party seller if you desperately want to go to a show (for something like Elton or Paul, YES...those are artists you NEED to see. So buy them) as long as you’re willing to, and have already come to terms with the fact in advance, that you will be paying substantially more for the tickets. Obviously the people selling the tickets to you need to make money, and the website hosting the tickets need their cut of the money. So do the math there.
How do I feel about reselling tickets myself? Honestly, I do it sometimes. I won’t lie. Sometimes it is just me not being able to go to a show after buying tickets way in advance. Or a friend bails and I don’t want to go alone. Other times it is premeditated and I know I won’t be going because they are just extra tickets...I bought to make money. Those instances, though, are always a risk unless it’s a big name artist. Sometimes no one wants them. And sometimes you have to lose money to get rid of them and make only part of your investment back.
Overall, my point here is...it’s really not fair to complain about third-party ticket resellers if you aren’t willing to spend some of your own time scoring your own tickets and following an artist’s schedule. Yes it sucks to pay more for something than its face value. But when you miss your opportunity...what are you gonna do? Pay up or skip it. It’s what you value!