Doesn’t it piss you off that the best concert tickets are always gone before you even have a chance to buy them? Why does it seem like ticket brokers always have the best seats? Do they have an inside source at Ticketmaster sneaking them those prime seats before they go on sale? The answer is, no. Ticket brokers just know how the system works. Now you too can use the same techniques the ticket brokers use by knowing how Ticketmaster works. After all, it’s kind of hard to go concert tailgating if you can’t get tickets in the first place.
Right off the bat, the term “hacking” in the headline is not to be assumed or implied that we are giving away insider secrets on how to infiltrate the back-end system of Ticketmaster. Please remove all premonitions of the movie “War Games” or “Weird Science” from your brain. The term hacking is meant to imply gaining an advantage legally and within the established rules. If you have ever visited HackingNetflix.com, you know what I mean.
The first thing you need to do is create a Ticketmaster account complete with your current information. You don’t want to be fooling around with entering in your address and daytime phone number when the clock is ticking on getting your tickets. The next thing you need to do is sign up for alerts for your preferred venues near you and your favorite bands or sports teams. Ticketmaster will send you a message well in advance of those tickets going on sale. (These alerts can be sent via email or text message to your mobile phone so select the method you like best.) This way you will never be left out of the loop on when to buy the tickets you want.
…you need your computer’s clock to be EXACTLY synchronized with the clock Ticketmaster uses…
Now that you will already know when the tickets for your favorite band or sports team is going on sale, it is time to get an advantage. In order to give yourself the best chance at being first in line to buy tickets, you need your computer’s clock to be EXACTLY synchronized with the clock Ticketmaster uses. How you do that is a day or two prior to your tickets going on sale, try to buy tickets for another event. (Don’t worry, you can always bail out of the checkout process before you have to complete the checkout process.) Try buying in different time zones so that you can find out exactly the time Ticketmaster releases tickets according to your computer’s clock. Getting synchronized with their computers will greatly increase your chances of being first in line when the online ticket window opens.
Now that you are synched up, it is time to buy some tickets. On the day the tickets you want go on sale, you need to open up three or four different browsers. Not just three or four different windows or tabs, but three or four different browsers like Internet Explorer, FireFox, Opera, Netscape, etc. Log onto your Ticketmaster account about 15 minutes before your tickets go on sale. Stick with one browser for the time being and DO NOT refresh the page in that 15 minute window. Do start hitting the F5 button like a crazy person about two seconds before your tickets go on sale. (You know exactly when it is two seconds in front of the sale of your tickets because you already have your computer’s clock synchronized with Ticketmaster’s, right?) Once your first browser allows you to select tickets, refresh the other browsers and put in your information. Select the number of tickets you would like and make sure to select “Best Available” in each browser. Once you get to the page where you can get a visual on your seat locations, if you like them, pull the trigger and buy them.
…The key here is you need to be familiar with the seating arrangements of the venue so you can quickly judge good seats from bad…
If the tickets you find on one browser are decent but not great, move them to the check-out page. They will sit there reserved for you for a few minutes while you compare them quickly with the seats on the other browsers you have open. The key here is you need to be familiar with the seating arrangements of the venue so you can quickly judge good seats from bad. If you find better seats in another browser, go ahead and buy them. Don’t worry, the first set you moved to the billing page will time out and will be filtered back into the mix after a few minutes of inactivity on them.
Something to also consider is the faster the internet connection you have the better chances you have in getting first crack at good seats. If you have a job that uses a T1 line and your boss is cool with you using it to buy tickets, use it. Definitely do not try this technique on a dial-up connection. Dial-ups are too slow and you will just come away frustrated and probably in the nose bleed section. Also, keep in mind that Ticketmaster releases blocks of tickets in waves so as to discourage scalpers from gobbling them all up. These waves are timed in 15 minute intervals so be patient. If you didn’t get in on the first crack you’ll likely get a shot at the next set of tickets released.
That’s about it. Good luck and once you have your tickets, it is never too early to start planning your concert tailgate party.
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