Saturday, May 18, 2013

Buying Same-Day Sports, Theater or Concert Tickets Could Save You 50% Plus

MarketWatch reports in on the price declines of  wasting assets:

Last week, we reported those purchasing a Groupon deal for up to 54% off Yankees ticket might still be overpaying by as much as 700%. According to data, terrace seats for recent Monday and Tuesday night Yankees games sold for as little as $3 on the secondary market on the day of the game. The $22 Groupon seats in that section for weeknight June games against the Cleveland Indians are likely to see a similar decline. (Already, resellers are offering terrace seats for those games, which the daily deal site said were worth up to $48, for as little as $18.) 
With few exceptions, prices drop in the days just before an event, says SeatGeek spokesman Will Flaherty. “Even when comparing prices the day before the event to the day of the event, it would be about 10% cheaper to wait until the event day to buy,” he says. Drops can be a race to zero for less-popular events, but even a hot game or concert will see some price breaks for remaining inventory to attract last-minute buyers, says Jesse Lawrence, founder and chief executive of ticket deal aggregator “Sellers would rather sell for a little than make nothing,” he says. “It is a perishable commodity.”[...] 
High supply and variable demand based on the weather and the team’s performance can mean lots of bargains, with tickets as cheap as $1 in some cases. Fans who buy MLB tickets 30 days in advance overpay by an average 43.3% compared with game-day prices, Flaherty says. Buy 14 days out, and you’re opverpaying by 33.5%. Key games tend to sell for more than face value throughout the sales cycle, though the price still drops somewhat as game day approaches. Some teams with large local, devoted fan bases — like the Pittsburgh Steelers and New York Giants — may have less of a last-minute decline, too, Lawrence says.
With the exception of a very few hit shows, like “The Book of Mormon” and “Kinky Boots,” shows rarely sell out. “There’s prime inventory available,” Lawrence says. But resellers know that, and don’t snap up tickets for any but those hot sellers, which means the secondary market is limited. Buyers’ best bet for most shows is still last-minute discount ticket booths like TKTS in New York City and Tix4Tonight in Las Vegas, he says. But even for hot shows, prices cool slightly on the day of. “Book of Mormon” same-day tickets available for the April 12 show averaged $295 apiece, versus $340 a week out, according to TiqIQ. That’s a discount of 20% off peak resale prices of $369 for that show date.
Last-minute buyers tend to have limited selection. Promoters usually have a good idea of demand for an artist in a particular market, says Lawrence, and the rarity of a performer being in town makes for dedicated buyers. “If you buy a ticket to Justin Bieber, it’s usually because you want to go,” he says. If demand is strong enough, prices can even increase on the day of. Still, according to SeatGeek data, secondary-market buyers pay an average of 29.6% more than day-of buyers.

I have only recently started using StubHub for last minute ticket purchases  but you can often find big bargains. The trick is to keep an eye on how much supply is posted at StubHub. If it is big, then prices will crash on the day of the event.

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