Thursday, June 19, 2008

- Solving the Headache of Buying Tickets Online

Like one of my favourite bloggers, Steve over at Teenage Kicks, I love the old vinyl to death but have a hideously poor record of gig attendance. That’s not to say that I’ve never done Glastonbury or Reading, just nowhere near as often as I’d like. Moving abroad seemed to be a bit of a killer for me, as it coincided with A) moving into my thirties, B) having kids, C) the mega commercialization of festivals in Turkey, and D) the advent of online booking agencies. That last one, above all others, has been the big stumbling block. I remember ye olden days when you had to phone up and give your credit card number to some stranger and hope for the best. It worked, but it was very archaic. My brother, eight years my junior, assures me that booking online is now very easy if you choose the right site, citing the case of the Leeds Festival tickets that he recently purchased from the viagogo website. Go online, click a couple of buttons and Bob is very much your uncle.

Viagogo Ticket Sales

My brother, being a bit more tech-savvy than me, tends to dish out sound advice when it comes to the internet, so knowing my skepticism for online booking, I’m really glad he put me onto Viagogo. While browsing the other day, I found out that the legendary Stevie Wonder is active this year and being a bit of a Stevie head, I thought I’d look up the availability of Stevie Wonder tickets. Lamentably, he’s not playing anywhere near Istanbul this summer, but if I wanted to buy tickets for one of his gigs, it’d be a darn sight easier on this website than in my previous attempts.

Now, let me tell you, a lot of Turkish websites are very poorly designed, leading you down a series of dead ends from which there’s seemingly no escape. Ticketing websites in this country are the worst of the bunch, asking you to give so much detail about the event you want to attend, from the day, venue, price you want to pay, to your trouser size, blood type and bloody star sign. All in all, trying to buy tickets from such sites put you off going to gigs completely. Consequently, when you have a site as clearly laid out as Viagogo, where all artists available are clearly laid out in alphabetical order in the left sidebar, it’s something of a Godsend. You can even sell back unneeded tickets. You can probably tell by now that I’m a bit of a fan of well designed websites such as this. In fact, I can’t wait for Janet Jackson tickets to go on sale!

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