Ticket buying for dummies, 2018 edition

mwplummwplum Posts: 1,354
I wanted to start this thread as a general information source as I found it a little disheartening to see several threads blaming the band for the way tickets went on sale. I think most of us get it, but for new 10C members, or for people who don't go to many shows, I hope this helps, not only for the future, but also to see the lengths that this band goes to for their fans:

General (non-PJ) shows:

1) Tour announced, general public onsite dates/times announced at same time (or within a day or so)
2) Various presales are announced within a day or two after the initial announcement (listed on TM or through various mailing lists you can sign up for through bands, local radio/newspapers, live nation, etc), these can be through:
  • American Express
  • CitiBank
  • Season ticket holders of the teams that call that venue home (ie. if it was at Rogers Arena in Vancouver, Canucks ticket holders may have a presale)
  • Local radio/newspapers
  • band mailing lists
  • Facebook
  • Live Nation/TM Mobile App
++Some shows will have multiple presales with different time windows all leading up to the general onsale (each having its own small allocation of tickets)- some of these can be good, others are clearly to get rid of bad inventory (many of these will have worse tickets than the general onsale). While I've scored some great seats through the presales, other times I've benefited by waiting for the general public onsale.

3) General public onsale - usually has a good amount of tickets, problem is that over the years, more and more professional scalpers have "bots" (computer programs) that can literally buy over 100 tickets on different TM accounts in less than 1 minute.

Verified Fan was introduced last year, and I believe the first big tour to use it was Ed Sheehan. It is used typically before the presales (but can also be after some local presales) as a way to limit bots (by getting a small amount of tickets 2-4 into the hands of someone with a TM account - through a single use password). I didn't listen to the PJ Radio interview with the TM representative, so I don't know more than the basic nuts and bots which are: 1) you sign up in advance, 2) if you're selected, you get texted a one-time use code a few hours before the VF onsale 3) You use that code at the time of the VF onsale and if you are lucky, you'll get good tickets, if not, you can try the other presales or the general public onsale

4) General public onsale - will stil typically have the bulk of the tickets, while maybe 20% were sold in presales, the remaining 80% is sold in the general public onsales. It used to be really easy to get tickets this way, but with each passing year there has been an increasing amount of bots, smarter bots, so it can be difficult to score good tickets.

PJ Shows:

1) Tour is announced, in the coming days information is sent out about the 10 Club Lottery, the general onsale (and sometimes other presales, like this year, Verified Fan) - the 10C Lottery is the only 10C affiliated pre-sale, 10C has nothing to do with verified fan
++also, while 10C has many of the best seats in the house, they don't have them all, so if you have a high 10C # you might get better tickets through another presale or the general onsale
2) You follow the instructions, enter the lottery, and hope you get tickets - this year there were more than ever 
3) You also sign up for verified fan, and should check other local presales (if any, listed on the ticketing agent's website - in this case, there were local season ticket holder presales in at least Seattle and Boston for Mariners/Red Sox season ticket holders - these were on sale before VF)
4) After the 10C lottery, you see if you still need any tickets, if you do and you have access to the season ticket presales, try those, if not you still have verified fan and the general
5) Wait for the verified fan onsale, hope you get a code, and see if you can get good tickets that way
6) If you strike out in verified fan, or don't like the tickets you're pulling, wait for the general public onsale
7) Try the general public onsale

  • 10C gives us a way better chance to get tickets before any other onsale. I don't know of any other band who is able to use their clout to secure so many tickets for its fans, (especially in advance of all the pre-sales)
  • Verified fan is a new thing and is TM's program, not PJ exclusive, it has nothing to do with 10C. It being used with popular artists more and more; some recent examples being Springsteen on Broadway, Bon Iver, Ed Sheeran, Taylor Swift, etc..
  • If you struck out, you either misread the series of emails from 10C, didn't understand verified fan, or don't realize that you still have a chance in the general public onsale (this is not meant to be a criticism, just hopefully you will find this to be a helpful resource
I may have missed some things, but I hope this helps as a general guideline, and assists in reducing the amount of threads/posts with misdirected anger.

1992-07-21 Vancouver
1993-9-4 Vancouver
1996-9-16 Seattle
1998-7-19 Vancouver, 7-21 Seattle, Memorial Stadium
2000-11-6 Seattle
2001-10-22 Seattle
2002 -12-09 Seattle
2009-8-17 Manchester, 9-25 Vancouver
2011-6-16 Seattle (EV), 9-3/4 PJ20, 9-25 Vancouver
2012-6-27 Amsterdam (#2!)
2013-11-29 Portland, 12-4 Vancouver, 12-6 Seattle
2014-AUS - 1-26 Sydney, 1-31 Adelaide, 2-11/12 EV Sydney State Theatre, 2-13 EV Opera House
2014 - USA - Memphis, Detroit, MOLINE, St. Paul, MILWAUKEE, Denver, 25/26 Bridge School
2016 - Lexington, Philly x 2, MSG x 2, Quebec City, Ottawa, Toronto x 2, Pemberton, Fenway x 2, Wrigley x 2
2018 - Seattle x 2, Missoula, Fenway x 2


  • theebradnesstheebradness Quincy, IL originally from Weymouth, MAPosts: 145
    I agree some threads/comments were due to misinformation. But, when you sign up for Verified Fan and don't get the code on time, or at all, you are completely justified to throw a hissy fit. IMO
    Lollapalooza 1992 Mansfield MA
    STL 2014
    Wrigley Aug 20th 2016

    I'm a lucky man to count on both hands the ones I love.
  • JP218404JP218404 NJPosts: 885
    I agree some threads/comments were due to misinformation. But, when you sign up for Verified Fan and don't get the code on time, or at all, you are completely justified to throw a hissy fit. IMO
    just an assumption, but something else me they did the group thing not to overload the system (it did it anyway), so maybe they delayed the code blast outs for the later group due to too many people on the system from the early times.  not saying it's right to do , but maybe a reason.  i've never seen them have groups in the verified fan system
    Marquee 91
    Wetlands 91
    CBGB 91
    Roseland 91
    and many, many more
    IMHO, band presales held outside of Ticketmaster usually yield the best seats.  If you like a band, get on their mailing list in advance of a tour announcement, since some bands limit presale access to those who were signed-up prior to the tour announcement.  

    Many bands use TicketsToday, Sandbag and other small ticketing companies to sell presale tickets, while the regular tickets are sold by TM or AXS.
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