It’s a good day for concerts: Live music makes a comeback in the United States after 150 million people were immunized. Every artist appears to be announcing new tour dates at the same time. Whether it’s the Dave Matthews Band, the Jonas Brothers, or Lady Gaga, your options are endless, and your pocketbook will thank you ConsolidationNow personal loans.
Tickets service fees are back with a vengeance with the return of concerts. A $50 surcharge on top of the ticket price is probably not something you’d have missed during the COVID-19 epidemic. Even minor inconveniences become prohibitively costly due to the “convenience charge.”
What’s the point of such fees, anyway? According to David Goldberg, a long-time ticketing executive and investor, people used to go to the box office to purchase tickets to events. Companies had to pay for the service of setting up computers and paying employees to answer the phones when ticket sales began to migrate online. As a result, the service charge.
Since then, we’ve gone a long way, but the infrastructural expenses are still there.
When it comes to selling tickets online, Goldberg believes that “people misunderstand that it is simple and inexpensive.” Although you won’t be paying a phone operator or a clerk, this service is not free.
Is there a service charge for purchasing tickets?
According to Goldberg, various tiers of ticket firms have different business strategies and, as a result, varying fees.
There are three principal ticket dealers: Ticketmaster, AXS, and SeatGeek, while StubHub and Vivid Seats are considered secondary sellers.
We’ll focus on the leading sellers. Goldberg uses a performance at Madison Square Garden to make his point. It costs $15 to purchase a drink at the stadium refreshment stand. It’s irritating that you can get the same beer for $5.
He explained that a contract allowing them to sell that beer at Madison Square Garden goes up for sale every few years, and numerous concessionaires compete for it. To get the contract, they must make bold claims about how much money they will return to the venue in addition to their fantastic selection and service. They may have to charge $15 for a $5 drink to keep their promises.
Ticket sales function similarly. For companies to compete for the privilege of being the only ticket distributor for a venue, they must make arrangements. In addition, Ticketmaster has been the target of many class-action lawsuits due to its lack of openness.
The venue or the organizer of the event you’re purchasing a ticket for in most instances receives a big chunk or a majority of those service fees,” Goldberg says. One more way to make money for the company. Even if Ticketmaster, AXS, or SeatGeek charge the customer, they act as a seller on behalf of the venue.
A percentage of the fees collected by Ticketmaster are given to clients “in exchange for selling their tickets,” according to the company’s website, which states that “in return for the rights to sell their tickets, our clients often share in a portion.” All remainders are profit-making, “when combined with other sources.”
What is the purpose of ticket service fees on websites?
Convenience fees, also known as service fees, do not spring up anywhere. According to Goldberg, they’re laid out in the contract. But it doesn’t make them any less expensive or less annoying to confront while attempting to get front-row tickets than they already are.
GAO found that major ticket vendors imposed fees amounting to 27% of the ticket price. Customers may have been unable to correctly see the costs on several of the ticket websites GAO investigated, resulting in concerns about consumer protection.
When it comes to secondary sellers, things are a little more complicated. Christine Yeo, Vivid Seats’ marketing and communications manager, say that the company is a marketplace. Resale tickets may be advertised on the site once vendors have been vetted.
Customer support and the technology that runs Vivid Seats are just a few things that Yeo claims Vivid Seats’ “service fees” go toward. Sending tickets through email and mail costs money. Thus, there is also a delivery charge.
How to avoid service costs when purchasing tickets
Cashback on ticket purchases may be redeemed via the Vivid Seat app as part of a rewards program. The Savor Rewards card from Capital One provides clients with 4% cashback on entertainment purchases.
Purchasing tickets in person at the box office may save you money if you’re ready to do things. No-cost ticket services like TickPick also exist to offer tickets without charging a charge. )
To sum it up? A high ticket price isn’t completely random. Service or convenience fees are standard in the secondary market, but primary sellers charge them because they must if they want to win venue contracts.
To Goldberg, “it simply becomes part of the whole economics of attending to a function.”