January 2006 Archives
By Greg Wiles, The Honolulu Advertiser
Aloha Stadium will prohibit scalpers from selling tickets to U2's April 8 concert on its property, but fans desperate for seats can look online, where a brisk market is developing.
They just need to be prepared to pay as much as 10 times more than face value.
As of late last week, some of the best reserved seating was available at $1,770 from Internet resellers and marketplaces. The same seat sold for $165 when 35,000 tickets went on sale on Jan. 14.
Hundreds, if not thousands, of tickets for the Dublin, Ireland-based band's show, anticipated to be the biggest concert in the Islands this year, are being re-offered online at sites like eBay, StubHub.com and FriendlyTickets.com. The Internet has made it easier for ticket brokers to do business, while giving individuals and scalpers a chance to make a quick profit.
Among the sellers on eBay was Bill Aman, a Mainland U2 fan who started reselling the band's tickets last year when he ended up with a pair of disappointing seats during a pre-sale event for fan club members.
That led him to check resale prices on eBay, where people were turning around and reselling some tickets for more than double.
"I was blown away," Aman wrote in an e-mail. Later, when ticket sales were opened up to everyone through Ticketmaster, he and a friend bought up $2,000 worth and began reselling them on eBay.
By IRENE CHAPPLE
U2 fans travelling to Auckland are being charged extra accommodation costs - raising the hackles of some who say they are already spending thousands to see the Irish rock legends.
Christchurch man Don Burns was shocked to find prices at Auckland Central Backpackers would increase almost 20 per cent while the Irish supergroup was in town.
Burns and seven others are travelling from Christchurch, Wellington and Masterton for the St Patrick's day concert, U2's first in New Zealand since 1993.
The 38,000 tickets for each concert sold out in 90 minutes and group organiser Sally Johnston said the four couples were spending about $1500 each on their rock'n'roll holiday.
Plans went sour after they tried to re-organise their accommodation and found prices had been raised for the weekend. Johnston said she booked four double rooms at the backpackers for $67 each and when she called back to change two of them for $88 ensuites she found prices had gone up to $80 and $105.
The backpackers' front office manager Andrew Hoey said prices had been put up for the Big Day Out and U2 because demand was high and "we had a tough year (last year) so basically we see this as an opportunity to get it back".
The decision to raise prices - which had been done only once before, for the Lions tour - was a "hard dilemma".
"We talk about it a lot, but we have to make money," he said.