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  1. #1
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    Purchasing show tickets becoming a major hassle

    I was just emailed by Annie Haslam's website about an upcoming show she will be doing. She will perform along with Al Stewart at the Scottish Rites Auditorium in Camden NJ on April 1. The only way to get tickets are either Ticketmaster or one of the County stores in Malls around Camden.

    Unless I am doing something wrong, with Ticketmaster, you can not speak to a Human and choose seating you prefer. It asks you the price range and your stuck with whatever the next tickets are.

    We then called the County store in the Cherry Hill Mall to find that we could pick our preferred seating. The trouble is, they won't accept credit card payment over the phone. They won't allow us to send a check or money order and self addressd stamped envelope. The only way you can purchase the tikets are in person.

    I can't get to the store by Saturday when they will no longer hold the seats. This is a problem for the performers. If they are going to make it so difficult to get decent seats, they are going to lose customers. It's hard enough to fill these venues that nobody knows about without making it a hassle to get your tickets.

    I emailed both the Freeholders of Camden County who run these shows as well as Annie Haslam herself. It will be interseting to see what kind of replies I get from both.

    Is it always so hard to get decent seats that you like elswhere? Whenever I go to a show at the Keswick, I drive to the box office and pick the seats I want. I can also do it over the phone but of course it costs more for them to "Handle" it. Not sure what they are handling.

    I'm interested to hear what anyone else here has to say,

    Hyfi

  2. #2
    In perfect harmony DarrenH's Avatar
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    My biggest complaint, other than the skyrocketing prices, are the availability of good seats. They all seem get bought up by ticket brokers or given to radio stations or the promoters hang on to them to give to their friends and families. Whatever the case may be, I have never been able to score good seats. And I've been to nearly 100 concerts in my lifetime.

    Ten years ago my friend and I (God rest his soul) stayed up all night at the Palace of Auburn Hills to get Aerosmith tickets. We were within the first 20 people and by the time we got up to the counter everything in the "golden circle" on the floor was gone. In fact, most of the floor was gone. Even the first dude in line couldn't score front row seats or anything in the "golden circle" for that matter. And unless I'm up close, floor seats suck big time. Anyway, that's the last time we ever did that.

    Last year I called in for Tull tickets and got through in the first 15 minutes they went on sale and still ended up half way back in the venue. It was a small venue (2000 capacity) and we were center stage but I was really hoping for something closer especially since I got through so quickly.

    Oh, I mailed a package to you today. Enjoy!

    Darren
    Let the midnight special shine a light on me.

  3. #3
    Musicaholic Forums Moderator ForeverAutumn's Avatar
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    Don't get me started on Ticketmaster! Grrrrrrrrr.

    I don't know if the system in the US is the same as in Canada, but here are two things that I have done to get past the computer generated tickets and on to a real person....

    1) If the venue is wheelchair accessible there is often an option to press a key and be transferred to a Customer Service Agent to purchase tickets for these seats. Once transferred to Customer Service, they have no idea what key you pressed to get to them and are able to assist you with your regular ticket purchase.

    2) The system asks you to speak into your phone as to which concert you want tickets for. Instead of saying "Annie Haslam" say, "this system ****ing sucks hippo balls". Since there will be no match for your request, you will be transferred to a Customer Service Agent who will be able to help you (the system may make you repeat this a few times to be sure that there is really no match) and....you'll feel better having been able to vent some of your frustration.

  4. #4
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    I got a response

    I'm not sure who is responsible, but I got an email from the promotors office. I guess when you remind them about the empty seats that the performers will be staring into because of thier stupidity, they sometimes listen. Here is what they said.


    ""Hi Brian Im sorry for any trouble you have encountered purchasing tickets for this date. I hope that it wont discourage you from continuing to enjoy the events featured at the Scottish Rite. If you would still like the tickets, please send a check in the amount of $64.00 written out to JACK UTSICK PRESENTS NE, Inc to Camden County Special Events, 1301 Park Blvd. Cherry Hill, NJ 08002, ATTN: Carol. She will then mail you the 2 tickets you have put on hold.

    Please let me know if I can help you out with anything else. Happy Holidays and enjoy the show!""

    So it looks like I'm going to see Al Stewart this year after all....oh yeah, Annie too!

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyfi
    I'm not sure who is responsible, but I got an email from the promotors office. I guess when you remind them about the empty seats that the performers will be staring into because of thier stupidity, they sometimes listen. Here is what they said.


    ""Hi Brian � I�m sorry for any trouble you have encountered purchasing tickets for this date. I hope that it won�t discourage you from continuing to enjoy the events featured at the Scottish Rite. If you would still like the tickets, please send a check in the amount of $64.00 written out to JACK UTSICK PRESENTS NE, Inc to Camden County Special Events, 1301 Park Blvd. Cherry Hill, NJ 08002, ATTN: Carol. She will then mail you the 2 tickets you have put on hold.

    Please let me know if I can help you out with anything else. Happy Holidays and enjoy the show!""

    So it looks like I'm going to see Al Stewart this year after all....oh yeah, Annie too!

    I replied and asked about future shows with the following response........Maybe there is a Santa Clause after all.

    ""Hi Brian - I've been in contact with Camden County and your tickets will
    be on hold until we receive your check. I've alerted them about the
    issues of tickets only being able to be paid in person and we will try
    to work together to iron this issue out for future shows. Until then, if
    there is a show you'd like to see and there are specific seats you want
    held. Please email me and I will do my best to accommodate the request.
    Rest assured this is being taken care of and please enjoy the show.""

  6. #6
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
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    Ticketmaster ... where to start? When you're dealing with venues that contract with an electronic ticketing service like TM, often the only place where you MIGHT be able to pick your seats would be the actual venue box office. And that really varies depending on which venue you're talking about.

    At least you have the option of going to an actual ticketing window to pick the seats you want. Sometimes when major concerts go on sale, they're available thru phone and internet orders only.

    In your situation, I think the weak link is that Ticketmaster voice automation system, which IMO REALLY sucks. I only tried using it once, and after dealing with it for a few minutes, I just gave up and logged onto their website. You also have to remember that Ticketmaster is setup to handle huge volumes of buyers for major events. For smaller venues that don't do a lot of events, they're just not setup to do their own ticketing for an event. Simultaneously, it's a convenience and a pain in the butt to go thru Ticketmaster. I always remember Ticketmaster outlets being cash only (or at least on the day when a major concert goes on sale), but when you're there, you get some choice on seats. (the system tells you it's the "best available", but of course that's subjective)

    At least you got your situation resolved. Think back though to the days before electronic ticketing, you had to either go to the venue box office, or go to selected outlets around an area that had a few tickets on hand.

    As far as availability of good seats go, you have to consider how many ticket outlets there might be in your area. Years ago (before the web), when I was living in L.A. and vying for concert seats, my friend and I did a little bit of research and counted over 100 Ticketmaster outlets in the region. We figured if everybody in line for a concert bought the maximum number of tickets (8 per person), then at least 800 seats were gone the second the system released the event for sale. Back then, to get the best seats, we had a friend who went to college in the middle of the state and could usually be the first in line at a Ticketmaster outlet over there, since you had less demand for concerts if they were 200 miles away. And the ticket office at my school did people in line a favor by taking "orders" in advance, and once the system went online they would just pull as many tickets as their printers could print, rather than just punching up the tickets as each person came up to the window. In those days, it was possible for a few people to get the prime seats for concerts.

    Nowadays, you add the internet and the best seats for an event can go very quickly. It's not as much as an advantage to go to a Ticketmaster outlet off in some podunk corner. Also, subtract all the prime seats that now get thrown into auctions or private sales or promotional holds, and I just don't see how average joes can get great seats for concerts anymore.

  7. #7
    Stainmaster Finch Platte's Avatar
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    And promoters, et al, wonder why people aren't coming to their shows.

    fp

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