How to Sell Your Concert Tickets in 2023
Maybe you got ill and can't go to the concert of your favorite artist, or you have more nefarious reasons and are actually looking to make money by ticket scalping: here's how to go about selling your concert tickets.
If you are looking up how to sell your concert tickets, one of two thing are possible. Either you bought your ticket to a concert of your favorite artist but life got in the way: an important work errand, or, God forbid, something more serious like a family or health emergency. Simply giving your entrance voucher might feel like too big a waste to you. After all, ticket prices, like the price of so many other things, have exploded in the past couple of years.
In 2019, the average concert cost $125 in the US. By 2023, ticket prices more than doubled, now the average is $252.
The second reason you are looking for ways to sell your ticket may be a little more nefarious: you may just be looking to make a profit on it, and sell it for more than you bought it for. In small volumes, the process is basically the same as the first one. However, if you want to do this on a large scale, and run a scalping operation for a substantial income, you are going to run into a lot more trouble. You may even be breaking a law in some places - more on that later.
So, let’s start with the first scenario of how to sell concert tickets.
It’s the simpler one by far. Concert passes tend to be non-refundable, unless the event is canceled or postponed. Event organizers are entitled to set their own terms for refunds, so they could give you the option to return them for the money - however, industry practice tends to dictate otherwise. It’s not simple greed, dealing with on-demand refunds may be too much of a human resource burden for the organizers.
So, if you are really unable to go, and don’t feel like just gifting your ticket, the easiest way would still be to ask around friends, family, and acquaintances to see if anyone is willing to buy it off you. In-person, cash dealings are the simplest to handle, and you supposedly know and trust the person you are dealing with.
However, there are downsides.
One, this person may expect a discount as a gesture of affection; and two - this is the bigger one - this ‘market’ is very limited in size, so the chances for success are relatively low. What are the odds you happen to know someone who is into the same type of music as you, to the point that they're looking to pay for an expensive concert ticket, and are also available on the exact date?
So, most likely, you’ll need to branch out to online sales to reach a wider audience with your offer.
Thankfully, large ticket sales sites. like Ticketmaster and StubHub, have built-in features for that. On TM, for example, you can go to your “My Tickets” menu point in your account to see the ones you have already purchased, where you’ll also find a sell button. The site also allows you to set your own price. This is a good option as the users on these sites are specifically interested in event passes, unlike a general online marketplace like eBay or the Facebook marketplace. Also, ticket sales sites have developed fraud protection mechanisms as well.
Now, if you are in it to actually make some sizable income ticket scalping, some of the advice above still may apply (such as the use of the sell functions of specific websites), however, an array of additional issues also arise.
How to Sell Concert Tickets - Part 2
First off, the most important one: in many places, scalping (to be clear, the bulk selling, then reselling event tickets for profit) is illegal in many places. In the United States, 7 states have outlawed the practice so far: New York, Alabama, Georgia, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Illinois, and Massachusetts.
So, if you’re looking to make money with this practice, please start by checking your local laws.
The second issue is that, if you’re going after significant profits, you will have to buy tickets in bulk - but all ticket sales platforms have set varying sales limits (the most tickets one user can buy to an event) to discourage scalping. You’ll have to buy your tickets across multiple platforms to maximize profits. Also, consequently, this is going to be a serious investment on your part with the risk of failing to resell.
One last thing to keep in mind: always be early. The prices of concert passes tend to go up as the date is nearing, as people are buying up the tickets and fewer and fewer of them are available - simple supply-demand principles dictate that. So, if you want to make your money this way, you can’t afford to sit around.
If it’s legal where you live, you can go ahead and give it a try - however, you will not be popular with music fans. Scalpers tend to be looked down and disliked among actual concertgoers, for some good reasons, might we add.