PFT – The Lions announced Monday morning that they will institute variable pricing on tickets for the 2014 season. Each preseason and regular season game will be assigned to one of three pricing categories that the Lions hope reflects the demand for each of those games that they’ve seen on the secondary market in recent years.
“Variable Ticket Pricing” is a creative way of saying different ticket costs for different games, and next year the Detroit Lions will be the first team in the NFL to implement this system. The gist of it is that lesser demand games like the preseason will cost less, while more “must-see” games like Thanksgiving day and games in primetime will likely cost more. According to the report, “Season ticket holders will see the prices for their preseason tickets drop by 70% although the overall bill for season tickets will rise by 8.2% on average.”
This simple concept may have you asking, “Why hasn’t this always been the norm for the NFL, obviously preseason games attract less fans than regular season games?” Sportsfans know that not all games are created equally. Some games attract the masses, while others have difficulty filling up the stadium. But NFL teams have been unrelenting to change their pricing models when it comes to tickets… until now. The main reason is because of secondary ticket markets. Secondary ticket markets are profiting on season ticket holders who want to get rid of their extra tickets to lesser important games. By doing so the teams, like the Lions, are losing out of money that could be kept in-house. With variable ticket pricing the Lions position themselves to gain that money back that would otherwise go to sites like SeatGeek, StubHub, and yes, even Tixers. If you happen to be a fan of the other 31 teams not named the Detroit Lions you might be asking yourself, “Why would I care about this?”
Analyst are predicting that the Lions are just the first team to implement variable ticket pricing, and they likely will not be the last. Accordingly, fans need to know what’s to come for their team. The non-season ticket holder fan who likes to pick-and-choose a couple select games they want to attend will now have to pay more for marquee games . This has the potential to limit potential deals on the secondary market because the margins won’t be as high.