At an average price of over $3,000, Super Bowl tickets are down almost 25% since the conference championships. At a get-in price of $1,400, we may be headed for the cheapest Super Bowl in five years. Even at these lower prices, though, this is still the biggest event in the ticket industry all year. With over 10,000 seats available for sale, there’s over $30 million of inventory available on the secondary market. In the ticket world, marketplaces like StubHub make money by charging a fee to both buyers and sellers. On average, that fee ends up running about 20% of the transaction value. When we’re talking about $30 million of ticket inventory that equates to roughly $6,000,000 in fees, for just a single event. Thanks to a new venture called the Ticket Club fees may become a thing of the past, for just $49.99 a year.
Fees have always been a major consumer complaint in the ticket market. In part as a result of that ongoing Sturm und Drang, StubHub recently moved to an all-in pricing model. Make no mistake, fees have not gone away. Now they’re now just baked into the listing price, and some might even say hidden. All-in pricing is actually something that we’ve been promoting at TiqIQ for our four years, and it’s great to see the industry finally catching up. At the end of the day, however, fees still exist. In an all-in pricing world, you’re just avoiding the sticker shock that so often comes when you hit the ‘next’ button.
The reality is that without fees the entire secondary ticket industry would cease to exist. While that wouldn’t exactly be a sad day for a lot of consumers, the secondary market plays a critical role in making sure that there’s accountability, security and reliability when you purchase a ticket off of a reputable ticket Website. For that and many other reasons, the secondary ticket market, and their fees, is not going anywhere soon. For consumers that buy more than $500 a year worth of tickets, however, that days of ticket fees can be a thing of the past.
The Ticket Club was launched in late 2013 by TicketNetwork, one of the biggest companies in the online ticket industry. Not only does Ticket Network operate the largest point of sale for brokers in the ticket market, but they also sell over a billion dollars worth of tickets every year through sites like Ticket Liquidator and other broker sites. It’s more than a bit surprising then that TicketNetwork has decided to launch a business that seems to undermine its existing business. According to TicketNetwork CEO Don Vaccarro, however, this is an offering that he believes caters to the 1% of ticket buyers who spend enough on tickets every year to justify the membership.
When it comes to Super Bowl tickets, however, every purchase is in the 1%. Below is a breakdown of ticket prices and fees for SuperBowl tickets through the Ticket Club compared to two of the other big secondary market sellers
-$2,500.00 Price per ticket
-$0 Service fee
-$15.00 Local pickup Delivery fee
-$5,015.00 Total (for two)
-$2,870.00 Price per ticket
-$574.00 Service fee
-$24.95 Special handling Delivery fee
-$6,314.00 Total (for two)
-$2,935.00 Price per ticket
-Service fee built into price
-Local pickup Delivery fee built into price
-$5,870.00 Total (for two)
At a $49.99 annual membership, and assuming that the average fee a ticket buyer has to burden is 10%, you’d break even on your membership at $500 worth of ticket purchases a year—not enough to get you into the parking lot at MetLife Stadium. For anyone who goes to a single Broadway show, or a big concert, though, the $50 will pay for itself in one event. Currently Billy Joel tickets for the first show of his residency at Madison Square Garden has an average list price $384. Coachella music festival tickets are going for over $500 each, and Luke Bryan tickets or Jason Aldean tickets, the two hottest tours in country music, both have average price above $250. Daytona 500 tickets have an average price of $285. Unless you’re planning to go any of those shows alone, you’d break even with just a single purchase on the Ticket Club. For NFL fans, eight teams had an average price this year at $250 or above, which means that a pair of tickets to one of their average games would pay for the Ticket Club membership. For SuperBowl tickets, you’d be saving anywhere between $600 and $1,000 on the average ticket, to mention nothing of nice seats. For Broncos and Seahawks fans looking on the secondary market for Super Bowl ticket, joining the Club seems like a no-brainer.
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