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New Research: Season Ticket Holders Disapprove of Restrictive Ticketing

11/22/2011

As sports fans are well aware, college and professional teams (like the Cavaliers and San Francisco 49ers) are experimenting with restrictive ticketing to strengthen their control over tickets after purchase. We wanted to see what fans thought about these new restrictions on their ticket packages, so we polled over 400 baseball, basketball, football and hockey season ticket holders to get their opinions.

Our findings revealed that season ticket holders strongly object to these restrictive ticketing practices:

  • Nearly 60 percent of the season ticket holders surveyed said they would not likely renew their ticket packages if teams prevent or restrict their options for re-selling tickets or sharing them with friends, family and colleagues.
  • Forty percent said they would be less likely to renew if forced to sell/transfer tickets solely through their team’s website.
  • Seventy-five percent said that fans should determine resale prices – and not ticket companies, sports teams or venues.
  • Ticket holders also reported that arbitrary resale price caps and floors would decrease their likelihood of renewing ticket packages.

Recent changes in the marketplace – including the wide availability of below face value tickets online – are making the season ticket package a less attractive a prospect for fans, leading CNBC Sports Biz columnist Darren Rovell to predict the eventual collapse of the season ticket as a viable ticketing product. Faced with that competitive environment, teams should be doing everything in their power to court their most loyal fans. Instead, more and more teams are implementing restrictive policies that treat ticket holders like criminals by locking down how fans can use the tickets they’ve bought and own.

If teams continue down this unpopular path, our poll shows that they could be in for some economic pain as once loyal season ticket holders express their displeasure through their pocketbooks.

You can read the full results of our poll here:

Season Ticket Holders Disapprove Restrictive Tickets

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