Thursday, September 26, 2013

Cheap Gig Tickets

If you’re a music lover, you may be lamenting the recent rise in ticket prices that seems to be plaguing the industry. Stay on top of your ticket-buying game and you can avoid extortionate booking fees, overpriced ticket touts and last minute panic spending to be sure you get the best experience for the lowest price.

Avoid sell-outs. The moment a popular concert sells out, buying tickets becomes a far more expensive pursuit. If you’re a big fan of a particular musician or band, make sure you’re in their fan club and on the mailing list so that you’re up to date on the latest tour dates. Plenty of artists will offer pre-sale tickets to their fans along with special discounted tickets, so be sure you’re not missing out on some good deals. You can also sign up for email alerts from ticketing websites like Ticketmaster and Ticketline so that you always know what’s up and coming and can book ahead of the crowds. If you’re an O2 customer then check out the O2 Blueroom, which offers priority booking to concerts and events and presale tickets. If you do miss a trick and find that your desired gig has sold out quickly, don’t panic. Keep your eye on fan sites to scout for unwanted tickets and hold out a little longer, sometimes bands and arts release extra tickets closer to the date. It's better to search here for a cheap deal from fan sites than it is to pay over the odds to a broker and then need to get a loan, such as offered by, to pay for it.

Try the internet. This is especially useful before the tickets have sold out, as once they’re all gone the prices tend to skyrocket. Check out sites like eBay and Gumtree to find people selling their bought and unwanted gig tickets; they can often go for less than face value. Just be sure to check the seller’s feedback ratings and be cautious when meeting strangers to swap tickets for cash, as there are some dodgy dealers out there. A good tactic, besides checking for positive feedback, is to ask for as much information from the seller as possible, including their address and phone number. This will hopefully discourage anyone who’s planning on selling fake tickets, just watch how forthcoming they are with their details. Avoid touts online who are selling tickets they’ve bought in bulk at massively escalated prices, and be wary when comparing prices to avoid getting ripped off.

You can attempt to avoid booking fees. When buying tickets online from ticketing websites, booking fees are an unfortunate inevitability. However, if you live in the town where the gig is taking place and are paying face value for the ticket rather than buying it on eBay, consider skipping the phone and internet booking and heading straight to the venue to buy your ticket. This usually cuts the cost of the booking fee, saving you a little extra cash.

If you’re a big music fan and love festival season, but hate paying the huge prices of festival tickets, you should consider volunteering to score some free tickets. Oxfam has a volunteer service set up at many of the major music festivals every summer such as Glastonbury, Reading and Bestival, all of which generally charge a small fortune for entry. All you have to do is work 3 shifts of 8 hours over the course of the festival, usually collecting tickets and doing a lot of standing around, and the rest of the time is yours to enjoy the music and atmosphere freely. You will have to hand over a deposit of £165; this is to make sure you don’t show up and then disappear into the crowds. Aside from Oxfam’s offer, the company Stuart Security also hires people to man the gates and manage crowds (and mudslides) at Glastonbury and other major festivals every year. Download the registration form from their website and you could even get paid for the job, whilst getting to see some free live music that would normally cost an arm and a leg. If you're in a trade union you might also be able to pull a few pints for Workers Beer and land yourself a free ticket to the festival of your choice.


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