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I Got Into a Sold Out Concert. Here’s How It Happened.

At the end of the day, I found out that you actually can go to sold out concerts—as long as you have a (the) Golden Ticket!

Photo by John Price

If there’s one thing I’m terrible at, it’s planning my weekend schedule. When it comes to events I want to go to, I often will forget to buy tickets until the day of the concert. If I don’t forget, I tend to have bad luck and often will log on at a time where tickets have all but sold out.

It’s a terrible curse to have if you’re a music fan. That often means that I can’t see shows I want to see—or that I will just end up paying tons of money in order to get “premium” tickets from a scalper outside the venue. It’s kind of a nightmare, really.

However, it seems like my hard time with event tickets has come to a close. A while back, there was the Lana Del Rey concert I wanted to attend. That concert changed everything, and I mean everything, about the way that I plan out my weekends. Here’s what happened.

Let’s talk about concert tickets for a moment.

While I’m very well-known for having an affinity for indie bands and DJs, the truth is that I do occasionally want to see some mainstream musicians. Mainstream music shows have a totally different environment and tend to have better light shows, amenities, and merchandise. I like them from time to time.

Of course, the problem with mainstream events is how frequently they sell out. Depending on the artist, it’s not even about selling out after a couple of days. It’s actually closer to hours, minutes, or if you believe some PR agencies, seconds. 

I’m very picky about my mainstream concerts.

Like most music aficionados, I’m pretty picky about my bands. When I go to a mainstream event, I am willing to spend money on it. However, not just any concert (or any performer on the radio) will do. It has to be great seating, a wonderful performer, and also has to be something that people look forward to.

Basically, what I want out of a concert typically lends itself as a perfect recipe for a sold out show. When I heard Lana Del Rey was going to be performing nearby, I knew I had to see her. I quickly called up my boyfriend Steve and my best friend Jess to get them to clear their schedules.

The quest for concert tickets quickly took a turn for the worse.

I took a look at the show’s dates, and was happy to see that it was right before my anniversary with Steve. It would be the perfect present! I texted him to let him know that our anniversary would be spent watching Lana Del Rey and eating dinner. He was elated.

Then, the day came when the tickets were supposed to go on sale. I remembered that I had to buy them, but it seemed like the universe itself was against my plan. That very day, my boss held me up after work to discuss a new account we obtained. As I rushed out the door, I found myself stuck in bumper to bumper traffic.

I rushed and rushed, but at the end, my rush didn’t get me to a computer in time. By the time I got home to order the tickets, every single seat to the concert had sold out on Ticketmaster. I stared at the screen, dumbfounded. What could I do now?

Now, I actually had to own up to my mistake.

Admitting I messed up isn’t easy to do. It hurts, especially when it deals with something as important as an anniversary. I just don’t like to be the bearer of bad news like that.

When I called to tell Jess what happened, she understood and said that she’d just go alone. It is a good concert, and we totally could understand that it was worth a solo journey. Even so, she said she’d miss having us there.

My boyfriend was pretty upset when I called him up with the news. I can’t even blame him for being angry. It ends up that Steve had already rented a hotel room in town and booked a car rental to the venue. So, he ended up spending a lot of money assuming that I already got the tickets.

“Thanks a lot, babe,” he said as he hung up. As he hung up, I realized he would have to cancel all the plans he made because of my gaffe. At this point, I actually wondered if this was breakup material for him. This wasn’t the first time my forgetfulness or bad luck has cost us a nice night out.

Just like that, I went from a happy anniversary to a potential breakup. I ended up sulking and called up a friend of mine, Stephanie, to vent. She always knows how to fix relationship problems and regularly ends up being my confidante about matters of the heart.

Almost immediately, Steph realized I sounded really upset and asked what happened. I told her the situation, and Stephanie seemed pretty mellow about it. She didn’t see the problem. She simply explained that I could “Golden Tickets” it. 

Wait, what?

I asked her to repeat herself. It was then Stephanie told me how she got into a bunch of her favorite sold out shows. Rather than rely on Ticketmaster to seal the deal, she went to secondary ticket sellers to get into the shows she loves.

She had tried a couple of sites that sells “sold out” tickets, but only one really seemed to be her choice. Her favorite site was called Golden Tickets, a small site I’d never heard of before. So, I started asking her about it.

Stephanie explained it pretty easily within a matter of minutes.

What I didn’t know was that Ticketmaster is a primary seller which sells tickets at face value. The problem with primary sellers is that they sell out of popular events in the blink of an eye. Golden Tickets and other resellers buy portions of those tickets and resell them. As a result, these resellers will often have tickets when most other primary sellers are sold out. 

So, I decided to give Golden Tickets a try.

Not going to lie, I’m skeptical of indie brands, but if she vouched for it, I’d give it a shot.

I went on Golden Tickets, and it was already easy to see why she preferred it. It was a very easy to navigate site. I clicked on concerts, searched for Lana Del Rey—and BAM! There were tickets, just waiting to be bought.

I clicked on the venue and time that I wanted to see her perform, then picked my seats from the chart. Checking out was a cinch, and the tickets were immediately sent to my email. As long as I didn’t forget my phone, I could actually go to the show. 

But that’s not all I did.

I signed up, filled out my information, and paid for the tickets. As I checked out, I realized that there was actually a Golden Tickets customer loyalty program called Golden Bucks. Since I bought my tickets and signed up, I earned money back that can be used towards my next night out.

After seeing the Golden Bucks program, I realized that I finally had an ally when it came to seeing shows at the last minute. Not only did they have tickets when I’d remember to buy them (whenever that may be), but they also treated me to a pretty nice loyalty program.

We went to the show and had a great time.

I called up my boyfriend to tell him the good news—we got the tickets! We ended up spending extra time together as we prepared for the show, and he seemed both thankful and impressed. As expected, Lana Del Rey performed beautifully and we got to enjoy the full “Summertime Sadness” song in all its glory. It was great.

Due to the seats we chose, we couldn’t hang out with Jess at the concert. It turns out that the tickets we got were way better than what Jess got. (She forgave us, though!) While we couldn’t sit with our friend, being able to see Lana up close totally was an amazing experience. 

Golden Tickets totally saved my social life.

Since my Lana concert, I ended up using Golden Tickets a lot more often. I’ve used it to tag along to concerts like Panic! At the Disco, and even got to snag a couple of Broadway shows through it too. The Golden Bucks eventually added up until I finally had enough to see a really awesome rodeo show with Steve.

Golden Tickets has been a game-changer for me, and that’s no lie. It helped me get out more, see more shows, and also get more in touch with shows of all types...and these days, I know I’ll never miss a great show again. 

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