Like last week, the next few days of this week are going to be quite busy, with a lot of activity in concerts, sports, and theater. However, one of the onsales we'll be paying particular attention to is that of the New York Yankees. That's because single game tickets for Yankees home games go on sale this coming Monday, February 24.
Of course, we're really interested to see how well Yankees tickets sell in light of Derek's Jeter's recent announcement that he is retiring after the upcoming season. I don't think anybody doesn't think they'll sell extremely well — the final home game and final regular season game ought to do particularly well — but we are excited to see how the retirement affects demand.
We already have some preliminary answers to that. More than a week after the announcement, prices have spiked. Last Friday, I noted that the average selling price for Jeter's last home game on September 25 had risen almost $250 from before the announcement to after it. Today I can report that the after-announcement selling price is now $505, almost $100 more than seven days ago.
We're a little late to this whole Jeter retirement price comparison thing, but we wanted to wait long enough for some data to come in before saying anything about the numbers.
A couple articles, including this one from ESPN, have outlined what happened to the listing price of Jeter's final games after his announcement, but I haven't seen anything about the selling price. It's one thing to say that ticket prices have shot up, and they have, but it's another to look at what ticket buyers are actually paying.
The average selling price for Yankees tickets listed on TicketNetwork.com indeed spiked significantly from before the announcement to after it. Before, the average selling price for Jeter's last home game on September 25 was $169. After the announcement, the average selling price rose to $409.
Hey, Ringling Bros. is #1 in the Top 10 again! That's four times in the last six months it has held the top spot. It would have had an overwhelming lead as well, if it weren't for Monster Jam, which was almost at the top but couldn't quite make it.
These two events show up in the top spots so often because, other than being popular in their own right, tickets are typically low-priced and many shows are available. In the case of January, the Ringling Bros. circus had a boost in ticket sales for events in Miami, FL; Charlotte, NC; Nashville, TN; and Birmingham, AL. Though Miami was the city with the most tickets sold, the biggest single event was the January 25 show in Nashville.
The opposite was true of Monster Jam, which saw big sales for events in Houston, TX; Anaheim, CA; Tampa, FL; and Atlanta, GA. The biggest seller was the January 18 show in Houston.
In addition to all the other stories we can tell about last night's events — the unseasonably warm weather, the great performances by Bruno Mars and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, and that absolute whomping the Seahawks gave to the Broncos — there are the stories about ticket prices.
Now that the game is over, I can say this about ticket prices: the story that's told depends greatly on how you look at the data.
For tickets listed on TicketNetwork.com — both before and after we knew the teams for the big game — the overall average selling price was $2,656, the lowest it has been in four years. However, it was only just barely the lowest in four years. For the 2012 game, the overall price was $2,670. Despite this game having a lot against it — a cold-weather city, an unprotected venue, and a lineup that had to travel very far from home — the overall price was only 5% lower than last year.
Last week I took a look at the post-AFC/NFC average selling price for Broncos-Seahawks tickets listed at TicketNetwork.com. In the six days since then, the post-AFC/NFC championship average price has gone slightly up and is now $2,657, compared to $2,847 last week. This suggests that the game is not as popular as sellers were hoping, even if a bit more than last year.
Last time I also took a look at the post-AFC/NFC average selling price for Broncos-Seahawks tickets listed at TicketNetwork.com, and found they were up about 18% compared to last year. Although the average is still higher than last year, the gap has closed considerably. With the additional six sales days factored in, it is now only 5% higher. With the natural drop in ticket prices that usually occurs as any event approaches, this margin may close even more as we approach game day.