Ticket scalping takes off

August 27, 2007

Paying $700 for Penn State football season tickets in the student section — face value $190 — was “a decent deal” to sophomore Ben...

Paying $700 for Penn State football season tickets in the student section — face value $190 — was “a decent deal” to sophomore Ben Simmons.

Yeah, it meant he had to sell his Xbox 360. And he’ll have to watch where he eats next semester to save money.

Never mind that $700 would buy his books for a semester or two, a 37-inch flat-panel high-definition television from Best Buy, or 141 half-gallons of ice cream from the University Creamery.

He must be in Beaver Stadium for Notre Dame, Ohio State, Wisconsin. And since he missed out on the university’s student ticket sales in June, he had no choice but to throw himself to the wolves — the lip-licking opportunists who are making profits off of their fellow students.

The scary part is, $700 really is “a decent deal,” compared to asking prices earlier this summer.

“There’s a whole lot of people selling,” he said. “But not for any nice prices.”

Ticket scalping is nothing new, but a confluence of the football team’s high expectations, an impressive home schedule, a short supply of tickets and a new Pennsylvania law has made this summer’s “secondary ticket” market more frustrating for buyers and more fruitful for sellers.

If you still really, really want to go to a Penn State game, there are plenty of places to buy as long as you don’t mind paying what can be called a premium.

The resale market for tickets to sporting events and concerts has exploded nationwide as other states have rescinded limits on the resale value of tickets.

In recent years, hundreds of Web sites have emerged, giving people the chance to buy and resell tickets online. Even Ticketmaster — the nation’s dominant source for concert tickets — allows fans to sell tickets to each other online.

Those seeking hard-to-find tickets or better seats for sporting events and this year’s big concerts, such as the Police, Genesis and Van Halen, have more options. But some said it also is tougher to find tickets at face value.

Full Story:
http://www.pennlive.com/printer/printer.ssf?/base/news/118809240780130.xml&coll=1