Thanks for your reply, Mike. You make some very fair points. To be fair to me, I think I at least alluded to a number of them. And this is not intended to be a deep dive on ticket reselling (although recall that there is a Part 2 coming Saturday). I can’t imagine anyone would stick with any reselling activity (tickets or otherwise) if it had a less than 50/50 profit/loss rate. Of course, overall profit margin is the more important factor. When I first got started doing this, it was tough to get over the losses (and they will happen – as I highlight more in Part 2).
So let’s go back to the San Francisco Giants. If they have an experimental section and they drop the price, why would I buy a ticket in the next section over that’s at a much higher price? So if I were going to buy that ticket, I would say, well, gee, I can save $10 by going to the experimental section. Why not? So my hunch is that there was a lot of cannibalization going on, and that 20% figure really didn’t represent new revenue, getting people price sensitive, in the door. My hunch is that the majority of this increased 20% came from people who would have actually paid a higher price. That’s a negative of dynamic pricing that I don’t think has been satisfactorily accounted for.
The goal of reselling any product is maximizing profit.  Thus, you want to buy the product as inexpensively as possible, and be as certain as you can that a market exists for that product at a reasonable profit margin. The nice thing about sports (and some theater) tickets is that season ticket holders usually get a nice discount off of face value.  The amount of the discount can vary significantly, so this requires some research. More importantly, in today’s world of secondary ticket markets, you should be far more concerned with the discount (if any) you are able to buy the season tickets at relative to prices found on StubHub.com, Craigslist, and elsewhere.

Airline rewards programs are a great way to get free flights, free upgrades, and free companion tickets. No matter how often you fly, you should be signed up for the airline’s reward program. I stick to US-based airlines since they are involved in all the major alliances and you can earn miles on their partner flights. For example, if I fly Singapore Airlines, I can earn United Airlines miles because they are partners. Likewise, if I fly Air France, it’s credited to my Delta rewards account.

Most concertgoers don’t usually consider ticket prices as incredibly low. After barely keeping up with inflation for decades, concert prices have risen wildly since 1996, or around the time when baby boomers, who helped start the industry, aged into a lot more disposable income. (It was also around this time that Internet piracy made the music industry more reliant on concert revenues.) These days, prices can seem incredibly high. Barbra Streisand, who charged more than $1,000 for some seats at a concert in Rome, inspired so much anger that she canceled the show. Yet to an economist, the very existence of scalpers and companies like StubHub proves that tickets are far too cheap to balance supply and demand. Pascal Courty, an economist at the University of Victoria, in Canada, who has spent the better part of 20 years studying the secondary-ticket market, has identified two distinct pricing styles. Some artists, like Streisand and Michael Bolton, seem to charge as much as the market will bear — better seats generally cost a lot more; shows in larger cities, with higher demand, are far more expensive, too. (If you want to catch Bolton on the cheap, head to Western New York.) The second group comprises notable acts, like Bruce Springsteen and Pearl Jam, that usually keep prices far below market value and offer only a few price points. An orchestra seat to see the Boss in Jersey costs only about $50 more than the nosebleeds in Albany.
While most business (and frequent) travelers feel good about doing their part by booking the lowest possible fare, they may be doing themselves and their company a disservice. The first disservice would be to themselves because the lowest fares often do not give the most elite qualifying points for their frequent flyer program. In fact, some of the lowest fares may not qualify for frequent flyer miles at all, depending on a flight's specific route.
As an industry leader, with access to nearly limitless data, Ticketmaster can determine fairly precisely just how much fans are willing to pay for every kind of show. Generally speaking, Smith says, artists who charged a lot more for the best 1,000 or so seats would reduce the incentive for scalpers to buy these tickets; it would also allow artists to charge even less for the rest of the seats in the house. Kid Rock told me that on his forthcoming tour, he is planning on charging a lot more than usual for “platinum seating” so that all other seats — including those in the first two rows — can be around $20. “It’s a smart thing for me to do,” he said. “We’re going to make money; I’m going to make money. I want to prove there is a better way to do this.”
It pays to plan ahead. The closer you are to your traveling day the more you pay. Why? Because a while back some smart guys and gals at an airline figured out that business travelers tend to schedule meetings at the last minute and have the least flexibility. So while the airlines stick it to the business folk, a well-organized vacationer can take advantage. To find the best fares for you, search for your trip on KAYAK and complete your booking 21 days or more in advance; for next best try for 14 or more. You still here? What are you waiting for?
I also sell tickets and this accounts for a portion of my self-employment income – I sold over $100,000 in tickets in 2014 and I’m way way small time. John is correct in assessing that this blog post is a terrible idea. The reason is because you’ll lose money on many, many, many events. Just saying “hey, this is a popular concert/show/sporting event” isn’t enough knowledge to know if you can turn a profit. There are a lot of other factors. For example, you may buy tickets to a concert at face value only to learn that people from a pre-sale or VIP program bought them for X% less. Good luck selling those on stubhub at a profit once they take their cut. Sporting events are seriously cutthroat, and it’s hard to make money unless you’re a season ticket holder. I paid $13,000 for my St. Louis Cardinals Season tickets. I might break even or take a small loss. I buy them to be able to give out some games as a promotion through my business and to have access to postseason tickets. You make all your money on the postseason, at least with the Cardinals. Even if you could turn a small profit from buying these season tickets regularly, you pay for them months before the season starts and you don’t get paid until you deliver the tickets for each game. Your money is tied up for months and months. You could use that money for other ‘angles’ and make more money overall due to faster turnover. I sell tickets because I enjoy it. And I’m being sincere and genuine when I say that if you’re just trying to earn points/miles, please stay far, far away unless you truly understand the real downside risk. I lose money on over 50% of the tickets I sell – that’s a true story. If you’re just dabbling, you’re hoping you’re going to pick the golden event and avoid the rest? That sounds like a terrible investment strategy to me.
1. Get familiar with your product: "If you're just starting out, choose a team or an artist that you know really well and know will make money on the secondary ticket market," Menard says. "Think about all the factors that contribute to their success and why fans are willing to pay big bucks to see them. Now start applying that same knowledge to other artists and teams and follow the market." Some scalpers choose an emphasis, such as basketball or hard rock, to suit their interests.
If you don't want to put in the leg work, you can let the deals come to you. Condé Nast Traveler shares many of the best flight deals on social media, but for those even more obsessed, it's hard to beat the convenience of flight deal blogs like Scott's Cheap Flights, Airfarewatchdog, SecretFlying, and TheFlightDeal, which are constantly posting deals from around the world. Follow them on social media or sign up for their newsletters.
Owing to the benefits of blockchain technology, when a smart ticket is issued, its origin and pricing can be tracked from the very moment of issue that is registered in a smart-contract, up to the redemption at the door. Even if a ticket is resold, there is no way to copy and resell a duplicate, or override resale rules specified by the promoter, unlike it often happens with conventional forms of tickets.
Thankfully, there are plenty of ways to save money on flights and lodging that don’t involve eschewing them altogether—life hacks I didn’t even realize existed until I began reporting this story. Like, did you know you can download apps that will alert you the moment the price goes down on that flight you had your eye on? Or that hotels will often offer you better deals on rooms you’ve already booked if you find that room available for a cheaper price after the fact on some other site? The list goes on. And here it is:

Thankfully, there are plenty of ways to save money on flights and lodging that don’t involve eschewing them altogether—life hacks I didn’t even realize existed until I began reporting this story. Like, did you know you can download apps that will alert you the moment the price goes down on that flight you had your eye on? Or that hotels will often offer you better deals on rooms you’ve already booked if you find that room available for a cheaper price after the fact on some other site? The list goes on. And here it is:
There is a possibility that airlines do not honor the booking of a flight with an error fare and cancel the reject your reservation (and, of course, refund your money). Therefore, it is advisable to wait at least 14 days after the purchase, before you begin to arrange accommodation and other travel logistics. Bear in mind, that even if you receive a confirmation email after your purchase, you are still not on the 'safe' side yet. However, if you also get an electronic flight ticket ... well, then there is a high probability that you will get away with it. :)
And the first is, there’s just a great deal of uncertainty when a ticket price is set, whether it’s for a baseball game that the Red Sox are doing well or not, or even a rock concert. The Rolling Stones can be very hot in some cities and not so hot in other cities. And so one of the key reasons is due to this uncertainty, many sports teams and musicians tend to be conservative, and set a low price. The second key reason is there’s generally a hesitancy to set prices too high, because there’s a brand or goodwill associated with these entities, and they don’t want to set prices too high to damage that. 

Be sure of your dates before you book. Changing or canceling your ticket can be very expensive, as airlines can be aggressive about change fees, with most charging around $250 per ticket per change. Unexpected circumstances can happen to anyone, so understand your ticket's change policies before you buy. (While nonrefundable tickets are cheaper and the most restrictive, even certain types of business and first-class tickets have penalties for changes.)
If an event is hot, the tickets will be sold for above face value. However, if the event is not well attended, tickets could sell at below the original price. Sometimes the prices are drastically reduced, so don’t be shy about haggling. In any case, the scalper, the broker and the corporate client each get one-third of the tickets’ actual sale price, plus the scalper made money buying the tickets in the first place.
Cheapest days to fly: Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday. According to a FareCompare.com study, the cheapest days to fly are Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday for domestic travel. "If you can’t book cheap days for your entire flight, do it for one leg of the trip and you’ll still see some savings," according to the website. For international travel, weekdays are usually cheaper than weekends, says FareCompare. Friday and Sunday are the most expensive days for domestic travel.
Kiwi.com, on the other hand, will mix and match airlines (including budget airlines) in order to find you the very cheapest route. For long-haul flights especially, this can make a huge difference. The same search on Kiwi.com returns a route at $459.80 USD via JetBlue, Norwegian Air, and Vueling. That’s a savings of $171.40 USD, and the travel time is even shorter!
When it comes to some things in life -like Coachella tickets and restaurant reservations on Valentine’s day- it pays to book early. The same can’t always be said for booking flights. Flash sales or low booking rates can drop airfare prices as your travel date approaches. Be careful though- waiting too long can cost you big time too. Studies show the sweet spot is around 6 weeks before your domestic travel dates or 12 weeks before international travel dates. Everything else aside be prepared to book a ticket to one of your bucket list destinations on a whim when you hear of a sale!
I’m kind of a relative newbie to the points/miles hobby (just ask Shawn). My sorry little blog is truly an endeavor targeted at friends and family who would (sorry Shawn) never come to MtM (or even the pure “deals” websites). I haven’t done a conference of any sort, but I would love to go to Trevor’s ResellingDO. (Just too far away! come out West, Trevor!) Maybe someday I will expand on this brief introduction (and sure there’s many other folks far more experience than I am!), whether on this blog or at a conference. I’m glad you found it an interesting topic.
To find cheap flights, price trackers are the ultimate tool—just search once, and you can be done. Using services like Google Flights, Hopper, or Kayak, you can set an unlimited number of price alerts for countless destinations. You'd could set alerts and receive emails about every place you're considering for your next vacation, and if one of them miraculously drops below your price threshold, you'll be notified. Sometimes the dream destinations are cheaper than a flight one state over.
Comparison-shop "air plus hotel" promotional deals. Some airfare aggregators and airlines offer "getaway" deals. For one low price, you get a round-trip flight to a European city as well as a few nights' lodging. Given Europe's high accommodation costs — especially in big cities — these can be a good value, though you can expect to be put up in a soulless business hotel.
There is no federal law prohibiting the use of bots, but 13 states have outlawed them and federal legislation to ban their use is pending in Congress. Though reselling tickets was once largely illegal, most states relaxed or eliminated their anti-scalping laws within the last decade or so for assorted reasons. Among them: the rise of internet ticket sales, the inability to enforce resale regulations, and the chance to collect taxes on sales.

The goal of reselling any product is maximizing profit.  Thus, you want to buy the product as inexpensively as possible, and be as certain as you can that a market exists for that product at a reasonable profit margin. The nice thing about sports (and some theater) tickets is that season ticket holders usually get a nice discount off of face value.  The amount of the discount can vary significantly, so this requires some research. More importantly, in today’s world of secondary ticket markets, you should be far more concerned with the discount (if any) you are able to buy the season tickets at relative to prices found on StubHub.com, Craigslist, and elsewhere.

The chart below shows the combination of the 5-7-13 simple moving average periods on a 1-minute chart. The lines of the 5-7-13 moving averages will stack up, pointing either above or below. Trends have prices stuck to either 5 or 7-bar simple moving averages. Diminishing strength is depicted when price penetrates the 13-bar moving average, an indication of a range bound market or a reversal signal.

If you live close to more than one airport, check out the fares from all of the airports near you. Many online fare searching engines will ask you if you are willing to depart from or arrive in more than one city. Yes! Also, experiment with different travel dates; shifting your itinerary by a month, a week or even a few days can make a significant difference when looking for cheap flights. You’ll usually find the lowest fares for travel on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Saturdays.


Comparison-shop "air plus hotel" promotional deals. Some airfare aggregators and airlines offer "getaway" deals. For one low price, you get a round-trip flight to a European city as well as a few nights' lodging. Given Europe's high accommodation costs — especially in big cities — these can be a good value, though you can expect to be put up in a soulless business hotel.
Cheapest days to fly: Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday. According to a FareCompare.com study, the cheapest days to fly are Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday for domestic travel. "If you can’t book cheap days for your entire flight, do it for one leg of the trip and you’ll still see some savings," according to the website. For international travel, weekdays are usually cheaper than weekends, says FareCompare. Friday and Sunday are the most expensive days for domestic travel.
For many of us, airfare can be a struggle, both in terms of cost and availability. But when it comes to planning your river cruise vacation, there are some simple research precautions you can take early on in the process to ensure you don’t end up on the wrong side of the airfare game. The first step starts with doing some research on your hometown airport.
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