September 27, 2016

Paperless Tickets: The Good & Bad of Transferability

Welcome back. Part 2 of our paperless ticket blog series will focus on non-transferability issues. While non-transferable paperless tickets take various formats, often the only way to enter into an event is to show the credit card originally used to buy the tickets along with a government-issued photo ID. If the ticket-buyer bought several tickets on behalf of a group, all must be present at the same time to enter the venue. If a parent bought tickets for their child to attend an event with their friends, the parent must be present to escort their children to the entrance to claim the tickets. When buying tickets as gifts, its suggested that fans ask their gift-recipients to make the original purchase. Afterwards, the gift-giver should re-pay the person in receipt of the gift. If a purchaser chooses to resell their ticket, it is recommended that the original ticket buyer walk to the show entrance to show their credit card and ID in order to allow others to use the paperless tickets. Clearly, there is no easy opportunity to transfer these tickets to someone else.

In some instances, paperless tickets are transferable, but with significant limitations. For instance, the ticket platform where the ticket was originally purchased will enable fans to transfer or resell their paperless tickets as long as the transaction is done within their platform. This limitation eliminates competition among platforms and provides no incentive for competition on platform functionality, user experience, or buyer and seller fees.

As paperless technology evolves, it is critical to note that there are applications that are great for fans! When paperless ticketing technology allows tickets to be freely transferred without restriction, or when non-transferable paperless ticketing is coupled with the opportunity for fans to purchase tickets in another format that is freely transferable – fans win!