Concert tipster: Why tix were as low as $19
Less than a week before the Charlottesville U2 show, the event hadn't sold out, and the prices appeared to be dropping. Some $30 tickets were offered for $19, the $95 tickets for as little as $71, and the $250s appeared as low as $130. And with just six days before Charlottesville's own U2 concert, the head of the world's biggest ticket reseller was advising would-be concert-goers to hold off a little longer.
"Wait out the weekend, and see where ticket prices fall," said Joellen Ferrer, the communications director for StubHub, the eBay-owned service that links ticket buyers and sellers.
As of Friday, September 25, StubHub members were advertising nearly 1,800 tickets for the October 1 show at Scott Stadium. If the venue holds 60,000, that's about three percent of all seats.
"That's actually quite a high amount," says Ferrer, and that's why she was predicting a further price drop, as ticket holders have shown a willingness to discount in order to avoid getting stuck with already paid-for tickets.
Overall, U2 's "360º Tour" appears quite the profit center–- and not just for StubHub (though it's their #1 ever). The 24 European U2 shows grossed nearly $188 million, which is more than the Rolling Stones raked in during the North American portion of their record-breaking 2005 tour when U2 took the #2 spot.
This year, according to Pollstar editor Gary Bongiovanni, since Madonna seems to have finished her tour, U2 holds a strong chance of standing atop the rankings–- even without selling out Charlottesville.
"That's probably not a surprise in this economy and in a town like Charlottesville," says Bongiovanni.
Concert venue manager Larry Wilson says he's pleased with the ticket sales. And with the in-the-round format of the U2 event meaning no blocked-off sections and lots of floor capacity, he might be looking at a record-breaking audience at Scott Stadium, even without selling every ticket.
As for would-be concert-goers, the next few days may be the time to get a bargain on a once-in-a-lifetime event, and StubHub's spokesperson says any ticket bought by Tuesday should be deliverable in time via Fedex.
"It's basic supply and demand," says Ferrer. "This close to the show with high inventory, sellers have to price their tickets more competitively, so that makes a more vibrant marketplace in the favor of fans."
By Monday morning, three days before show date, the number of tickets available on StubHub had fallen 1o just over 1,500, thanks apparently to brisk weekend sales.
"We saw a noticeable spike in sales beginning Friday, presumably after the story ran," says StubHub's Ferrer. "Sales have been strong since, and are moving quite briskly today."
By Monday afternoon, the number available has fallen to around 600, as– according to the "refresh" button on a reporter's internet browser– tickets were selling at the rate of about 20 per hour toward the absolute deadline of 4pm Tuesday for hard tickets and 3pm Thursday for "eTickets."
–last updated 3:04pm Monday, September 28
–orig headline: Buy U2 tix Monday or Tuesday