US: What do Americans consider when purchasing event tickets?

Cheryl Kar
January 04, 2022, 7:17 PM UTC

The rollout of COVID-19 vaccinations and boosters is enabling Americans to return to venues and watch their favorite athletes or artistes perform live. It’s not surprising that after months of limited or no access to these events, fans are eager to step out and visit venues in real life. 

But what factors are US adults considering before splashing out for tickets to these events? 

YouGov survey data asked American consumers who prefer attending outdoor events about the aspects they consider before purchasing tickets for a sporting or performance event at a venue. The data shows that two in five (40%) of this group consider the price as the most important factor (next to 38% of the general population). 

American consumers who like to attend outdoor events are slightly more likely than the general population to take into consideration the proximity to the venue when purchasing tickets to a sporting or performance event (26% vs. 25%). On a demographic level, this factor is most important to consumers aged 30-44 (18-29: 23%; 30-44: 29%; 45-64: 28%; 65+: 20%).  

About the same share of US adults who like to attend outdoor events prioritize location of the venue when purchasing tickets (25%) as opposed to 23% of the general population. 

And value for money? Well, it’s the fourth factor that US adults look at when purchasing tickets (21%). The gender split shows that men are more likely than women to prioritise this (28% vs. 21%). Consumers appear to be more flexible than they are when, say, picking a restaurant (50%) or picking a vacation destination (30%). 

One in five US adults who like to attend outdoor shows also tell us they would purchase tickets to an event based on their interest in the event and participants in the show (20%). That’s perhaps surprisingly low but just shows how the right price point can supersede the right performer, team or stars.  

Consumers are also concerned about how close their seats are to the aisle – as 19% of US adults who like outdoor events consider this when purchasing tickets. Related to this finding, our data also shows that the size of the seat (11%), food and drinks available at the venue (10%), location of the restroom (9%) and legroom (9%) is also important for this audience. This suggests that while it’s common for organizers to highlight the price and stars of the show, consumers are also looking for comfort when stepping out to watch live performances. 

A marginal proportion of US adults tell us they consider online recommendations (6%), merchandise for sale at the venue (5%) and offline recommendations (4%) when purchasing tickets for an outdoor sporting or performance event. 

Receive monthly topical insights about the Leisure and entertainment industry, straight to your inbox. Sign up today.  

Discover more leisure and entertainment content here  

Methodology: YouGov Profiles is based on continuously collected data and rolling surveys, rather than from a single limited questionnaire. YouGov Profiles data is nationally representative and weighted by age, gender, education, region, and race. Learn more about YouGov Profiles.