Ticketmaster Won’t Explain How It Ran Out of Taylor Swift Tickets



  • Ticketmaster canceled the general ticket sale for Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour, which was planned for Friday.
  • The company issued a press release that did not explain how or why it ran out of tickets during the presale.
  • Ticketmaster blamed “extraordinarily high demands” and “insufficient remaining ticket inventory.”

Ticketmaster announced Tuesday that Friday’s general ticket sale for Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour would be canceled due to “extraordinarily high demands” and “insufficient remaining ticket inventory.”

But in the 676-word press release announcing the debacle, Ticketmaster neglected to explain how it ran out of tickets to begin with.

Tickets for The Eras Tour went on sale Tuesday for “Verified Fans,” a group of fans who were randomly selected by Ticketmaster after applying for a presale code.

According to the press release, 2 million tickets were sold during the limited “Verified Fan” window, setting a record for single-day sales.

In its statement, Ticketmaster explained that 3.5 million people applied for presale codes, which it called “the largest registration in history,” signaling that Swift needed to add more dates for her highly-anticipated tour.

So she did — twice. Swift ultimately doubled the number of shows she was originally scheduled to perform, bringing the total number of tour stops for the US leg up to 52. (International dates have yet to be announced.)

Historically, Ticketmaster said, only about 40% of fans it verifies actually show up to buy tickets, with most of those fans purchasing, on average, three tickets. Ticketmaster verified 1.5 million fans to buy tickets for 52 shows, 47 of which were sold by Ticketmaster.

The remaining 2 million Swifties were waitlisted, but no one ever got off the waitlist.

The presale for Capital One cardholders took place on Wednesday after being postponed from Tuesday afternoon. 

Yet even those ticket sales were a debacle, with fans getting locked out of buying tickets or experiencing errors with Ticketmaster’s system. Many people were unexpectedly kicked out of the queue or unable to check out once they’d gotten through.

Ticketmaster blamed a “staggering number of bot attacks as well as fans who didn’t have invite codes” for driving “unprecedented traffic on our site, resulting in 3.5 billion total system requests — 4x our previous peak.”

Nowhere in the lengthy press release did it explain how or why tickets sold out before they went on sale to the general public.

Presales are designed to mitigate demand for tours by releasing smaller chunks of inventory ahead of time. The largest chunk is typically reserved for the general sale, which is made available to all hopeful concertgoers, as opposed to randomly selected “Verified Fans” or owners of specific credit cards.

When reached for comment, a representative for Ticketmaster declined to clarify how many tickets were released for the presale, or whether that number was inconsistent with original projections.

Insider also asked if there is any inventory remaining for The Eras Tour, or if Ticketmaster has a plan to reform its system so a similar situation doesn’t recur.

Instead of responding, the representative redirected Insider to the statement on Ticketmaster’s website.

A representative for Swift did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.



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