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PRE-SALES, PLATINUM PURCHASE, DYNAMIC PRICING – BUYING CONCERT TICKETS IS MAKING US MISERABLE NOW

By 23 June 2022No Comments

Dickie Felton | 24 June 2022

“Credit cards lined-up, mobile phone glued to ear, landline on redial, computer screen freezing.

“Panic stricken and in a hot sweat I shout in desperation and disbelief: ‘How can York Barbican be sold out already?’

The above passage from ‘Morrissey International Airport’, was written more than a decade ago.

But that 2011 tour bears striking similarities to the one just announced.

Morrissey is returning to small venues this autumn and the scramble for tickets has fans in frenzy.

The 63-year-old will play his most intimate shows on these shores for more than a decade when he appears at nine UK venues and one in Ireland.

He’ll sing to crowds ranging in size from 2372 at Stockton Globe to the biggest venue on the tour – the 4921 capacity Brixton Academy.

It makes a big change from his recent UK tours which have been played out in large arenas.

At 0930 today virtual shutters went up as fans clambered to secure their moment with Moz.

By this afternoon most tickets were gone. Or so it seemed.

A pre-sale took place on Tuesday for the venues which are associated with O2.

This left the general public to slug it out on their software for the remaining tickets today.

Pre-sales are just a cunning marketing ploy to make a commodity seem super scarce and only the ‘special ones’ have access.

Today it was quite simple getting face-value tickets direct from venues like Stockton Globe and Blackpool Opera House (who kindly put their box office live five minutes earlier than advertised…)

I managed to get tickets for the Morrissey shows I wanted to go to.

But other fans were not so fortunate and ended up paying through the nose.

Buying concert tickets is a bit like buying rail tickets – it’s a hugely confusing mess.

Some are sold by the venue itself.

Some are split between different ticket agencies to sell and charge what they like.

Some are given to other ticket agencies who can sell them, but must wait till the bigger agencies have plundered pockets first.

The smaller agencies may sell their tickets a bit cheaper – but they’ll sell super quick.

Some tickets will be kept back until the day of the gig.

But nothing gets said about that because we are encouraged to shell our Sterling right now.

Are you confused yet?

Today a lot of fans wanted tickets for Morrissey’s homecoming Manchester Apollo show.

Standing tickets in the stalls, with a face value of £85, were snapped up within a hour of going on sale.

Yet tonight, official outlet Ticketmaster has the same stalls tickets for sale at £148.50 – almost double the original fee.

The reason for such an extortionate uplift? – ‘dynamic pricing’ – which is a new concept on me.

Ticket touts of yore used to hang around outside concert halls with a stash of tickets in one hand and a stash of dosh in the other.

I would see the same fellas operating outside Liverpool Royal Court and Manchester Apollo for decades – until the internet arrived.

Shady characters by trade with an army of lieutenants in tow, you generally knew where you stood with them.

These sole traders who put in a slightly unmoral shift on street corners have now been replaced by the big ticket agencies.

Can you imagine that baggy jacketed Scouse spiv of yesteryear demanding more cash as part of his ‘dynamic pricing’ structure?

Ticketmaster say the price of tickets is now “driven by demand from fans” – IE it’s yours and mine fault we want to see a band we love.

Buying concert tickets is apparently now “similar to airline tickets or hotel rooms”.

Ticketmaster think they are doing us all a favour by cracking up the cost somewhere north of Neptune.

Look at this one tonight for Morrissey’s Manchester date:

What one earth is a “Platinum Ticket”?  I thought that royal monstrosity from the other week was at an end.

One experienced fan who has been buying tickets to see Morrissey since his Smiths days, sat out today’s ticket chase.

He said: “This is the first time since 1984 that I haven’t bought any tickets. I’m going to wait until two weeks before the gigs and just see what’s left.”

He’s got a point. I’ve often left it very late to get tickets for sold out shows.

Lots of spare tickets will emerge nearer the time.

I’ve even got Morrissey tickets outside the venue ten minutes before he’s due on stage.

There’s aways someone whose mate is ill, or couldn’t make it out of bed, or whatever…

Twitter has proved invaluable to me in securing tickets for sold out shows.

So, hold your nerve, put Viva Hate on repeat, take a deep breath and worry about it all later.

Do not succumb to sky-high ticket agency attempts to fleece you.

You’ll get in to the gig you want to.

And Morrissey will be amazing.

Morrissey International Airport and The Day I Met Morrissey are still buyable *here*

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