Editor's Picks

5 best ways to buy sports and concert tickets

concert tickets

There are more ways to buy tickets than ever.

From Craigslist resellers to event-specific ticket hubs, there’s a real choice paralysis here. Who do you choose when you’re hoping to score a seat at one of the most in-demand events of the year?

Below, we’ve rounded up some of the best options — from where to lock down special deals to where to get a refund in the event of a cancellation.

5 best sites to get tickets to concerts, professional sports, and more

Ticketmaster (ugh, we know…)

Ticketmaster home

Ticketmaster is the 400-pound gorilla in the event game. The company has been around since 1976 and is one of the biggest names in ticket sales.

Of course, there’s always a downside. If you’re angling for tickets to an in-demand concert or a major playoff game, there’s always the risk that tickets will sell out fast.

One of the key reasons that we liked Ticketmaster is, the site has one of the best return policies around. Ticketmaster offers a Fan Guarantee that means you have three days to get your money back in the event of a cancellation — so if your sports game is rained out, it’s not a total bust.

The price comparison feature is adequate. Other sites do a better job in that respect, as Ticketmaster doesn’t show you the view from each seat. Meaning, aside from proximity, it’s hard to figure out why one seat is $25 when another is $50. Still, reputation and ease of use win out, making this one of our top picks for ticks.


StubHub search

Stubhub offers some of the most competitive pricing on tickets for everything from pop star tours to music fests, comedy shows, and speaking engagements. We liked the site’s intuitive interface, which lets you sort through their offerings based on price, location, artist, and so on.

At a glance, some ticket prices appear higher than competing sites, but it’s important to note that StubHub makes up for it by offering free shipping.

Instead, the site builds a 10 percent service fee into the sale and you’ll have the choice of receiving online tickets, physical stubs, or the option to pick them up at will-call.

One of the key advantages of StubHub is that as the events draw closer, prices might start to drop. Obviously, that won’t be the case for certain events like a major playoff game — but it’s a great way to see some quality shows on the cheap if you’re looking for something to do.

Overall, StubHub is one of our top picks for ticket apps. The transparent pricing, plus a massive selection of tickets means that you won’t have trouble locking down seats for that special event.


TicketNetwork seating chart

TicketNetwork is a ticket reseller that offers a wide range of tickets to all kinds of events from the Broadway shows to your favorite comedian’s latest tour.

The site is user-friendly and they make it easy to browse by category, top events, and more. Because the site is a resale platform, tickets may be priced above face value. Still, shoppers have the option to finance their payment using PayPal credit — interest-free for six months.

The main benefit of TicketNetwork is, the platform provides a resource for ticket hunters seeking their “in” for sold out shows or hard to find events.

Tickets also come with a 100 percent, money-back guarantee.

What’s more, TicketNetwork also functions as a way to offload unwanted tickets of your own. All you need to do is set up a free account and post your tickets. They’ll take a 10 percent commission, but it’s not a bad deal — and it’s a whole lot safer than trying to sell your seats to strangers on Craigslist.

Seat Geek

seat geek home

Seat Geek is another great option that allows users to sort through a selection of events. What’s unique about this platform is, they assign a “deal score” to each seat, and the intuitive platform recommends events based on your past searches.

Like StubHub and TicketNetwork, you can also sell tickets through Seat Geek, but the commission on this site is 20 percent, which is a bit higher than the other options.

Vivid Seats

Vivid Seats tickets

Vivid Seats is one of the best picks, especially for sporting events. The site comes with interactive seating charts, transparent pricing, and an easy-to-navigate search function.

All tickets are backed by a 100 percent money-back guarantee, and in many cases, you can see the view from your seat before committing to a ticket. The downside with using Vivid Seats is, sometimes the prices are rather high. In general, StubHub offers better pricing, but Vivid is a solid pick—especially if you opt into their rewards program.

Parting thoughts

We recommend shopping around with a few of these sites before you buy tickets. Most ticket brokers offer comparable pricing, but in some cases, you might be able to find a deal.

Overall, any of the above options should serve you well. Enjoy the show!

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