Have you ever really wanted to go to a popular show near you? Maybe it was your favorite rock star, broadway show or sports team. And the moment you go online to get tickets, they were all sold out way ahead of the show?
The truth is, the event ticket market is stacked against you higher than a Vegas casino. A venue that accommodates 20,000 wild fans can sell out in about the time it takes for you to log into your computer.
Before tickets even go on sale, entire batches are claimed by the artist’s own organization, corporate sponsors, season pass holders, and others. Nearly 20 percent of available seats are gone by the time you click to purchase your tickets. And unlike when buying airline tickets, where you can get a good deal at the last minute, waiting until the last minute to buy event tickets just doesn’t work.
But never fear! You still have options. Here are some of the best ticket sites that are better than Ticketmaster if you want to get awesome seats at popular, hard-to-get-into shows and events.
Because so many groups and organizations have access to the best seats before you do and you really want to get good seats for the show (especially after Ticketmaster has sold out), your best bet is to track down and purchase tickets on the secondary market. That’s really where all the best seats are anyway.
Online City Tickets is one of the most popular resale ticket marketplaces. When you visit the site it’ll detect your location based on your IP address and present you with a list of upcoming shows in your area that you can buy tickets for.
Even when tickets are sold out elsewhere, you’ll be able to find some good seats available at this site.
This is one of the best places to buy concert tickets, but keep in mind that you’re probably going to have to pay above face value to get those seats.
Just like Online City Tickets, Good Seat Tickets is a resale marketplace where third party individuals or organizations sell concert, event, or sports tickets fo prices ranging from face value to well above face value.
It’s the best place to buy tickets when the good seats have sold out everywhere else.
If you have the money to spare, the odds are good that you’ll still be able to get a ticket even if they’re all sold out on Ticketmaster.
Bargain Seats Online offers concert and theater tickets just like other resale marketplace sites, but it specializes in sports event tickets. You’ll see a menu item for each sports league, with all available sports events listed, sorted by date.
You can be sure that you’re going to pay a premium for these tickets. For example, LA Lakers tickets are available on this site, but mostly court side tickets ranging anywhere from $180 to $300 each.
The point is that if you desperately want to attend an event and the tickets are sold out elsewhere, resale marketplaces like this are the best ticket sites to grab your coveted seat at the event.
Brokers (essentially scalpers) use inside connections to garnish huge blocks of tickets for sale on the secondary market. Case in point is TicketCity. Randy Cohen, CEO of TicketCity, told BNET in an interview:
“We have relationships and contracts with people and venues. Through our relationships, we’re able to get tickets.”
TicketCity covers just about any sort of event you’d probably be interested in, including sports, theater, and concerts. There’s also a page where you can contact TicketCity if you’re interested in selling your own tickets to TicketCity!
There are also ticket specials in select locations and a 100% money-back guarantee. This is obviously one of the “big dogs” of ticket brokerages and one of the best places to buy tickets when you can’t find them elsewhere.
Another major broker of event tickets is the very popular site RazorGator. It even touts itself as the place to go when you’re dying to get popular tickets and can’t find them anywhere else.
How does RazorGator get these rare tickets? The truth is, like the other sites listed in this article, RazorGator is a reseller marketplace. When Ticketmaster has completely sold out of tickets, it’s likely there are resellers (i.e. “scalpers”) looking to hawk those tickets at a marked up price.
RazorGator seems to cover more event types compared to many other sites. Where else could you get tickets for a rodeo, Cirque du Soleil, and a Nickelback concert all in one place?
You get a 100% money-back guarantee. RazorGate also claims to offer prices that are 10-15 percent less than other sites. It also features a grading system on tickets based on price and seating. The site also lets you use your IP address to search for upcoming events near you.
Imagine you’re in a situation where you’re on a date and the person across the table from you says, “Oh, I’ve always wanted to go see the Phantom of the Opera on Broadway but they’re sold out for months!”
How cool would it be to have a friend who you could call and say, “Hey, could you hook me up with a couple of tickets to the Phantom of the Opera?”
Well, at TicketsToGo, you’ve got that friend to call. At TicketsToGo, you place an order for a show and even if it’s officially sold out, this independent broker will locate an available ticket for you.
You’re probably going to pay a lot more for it. But at this point, when you’re dying to see your favorite band or show, and there aren’t any seats left, does it really matter?
Definitely use TicketsToGo as the last option, but at least it’s an option that you have.
How to Find and Buy Event Tickets Fast
When there’s a popular show in your area, you can sit by the computer and attempt to grab a ticket the moment they go on sale. However, because of the way the system is set up, the odds are stacked against you.
Unfortunately, in this arena, money talks. If you want good seats at a popular event, you’re going to have to pay more than face value. The resources listed above are some of the best ticket sites where you can access those premium tickets.
If you’re buying tickets to a local event like a music festival, make sure you have the right tech gadgets when you go.