Recently, Phantoms’ season ticket holders receive a gift card in the mail to reimburse us for the un-played playoff games, which were included in our season ticket package for last season. It was an interesting twist, as most of us assumed the credit would be applied to our 2015-2016 season ticket bill. And, still you can, if you call or stop by to have the gift card applied to your balance. But, more likely, we’ll just spend it at the arena, gift shop, Chickie’s or Crust. Or, lose it and not use it at all. Interesting way for the Phantoms to keep the entire season ticket fee.
Last season, I extended my season ticket commitment from 3-years to 5-years. It was an interesting decision for me, as I never really wanted a 3-year plan to begin with–I had thought I asked for a 1-year plan. The arena wasn’t built yet, and there was no seating chart available; I committed sight unseen and had intended caution. But everything was so cool, and when my contract appeared in front of me with a 3-year commit, I figured, “what the heck?” Plus, the details of the contract were such that my price was locked in for the first two years of the contract, and could only increase by a set amount for the third.
One night in the middle of last season, as I was hanging out at Chickie’s and Pete’s (as I’m want to do) someone mentioned that Phantoms season tickets would be increasing for the following year. Year two, and already an increase. I wasn’t sure how much it would be, but I immediately extended my season ticket plan to five years, locking in the first three at the original ticket price. Then, in years four and five, it can only increase by a set percentage (I forget; 5%? 10%? It’s in the contract, which I did not receive a copy, and it hasn’t been provided on two requests.)
Looking at the prices now, I’m glad I did. Things are spelled out pretty clearly on the Phantoms Season Ticket page, and that’s the good part. The prices going so high? That’s not so good. Let’s take a look. First, though, another copy of the seating chart:
There are some versions of this map which have 103 as a green section. However, that makes little sense. 106 should be the more desirable “blue line” section as it’s the Phantoms Attack Zone section–it’s the same reason that end is red rather than orange.
One more thing before we look at the prices: “Glass” and “Club” prices are the highest–I believe Club more than Glass. The per-game in the club for season tickets as well as single game was in the neighborhood of $43.00 before fees. Perhaps there were a few slight differences, but the tickets were tough to come by, are probably all under contract for five years, and mostly 113 when you could get them at face value. Glass was a bit less, and had a nice discount for the season package. Again, I’m unsure of the exact math, but was something like $38.00 for single game, but more like $30 with the package.
By memory, I seem to recall that the package was based on 41 games, but I suppose it could have been 42: 38 regular season, 1 preseason, and 2 playoffs. Indeed, I was just refunded two playoffs, but there were also two preseason games last year–perhaps we got one free because the prices were lower. At any rate, I’m going to continue to use 41 as my number of games, and I’ll concentrate on YELLOW prices, because that’s my section, and I’m the most familiar with the pricing–others are listed below.
Original Season Ticket Price:
Per game, based on 41 games:
Face Value, printed on ticket:
With fees, if purchased on-line, day of game:
Season Ticket Price for 2015-2016:
Season Ticket Price for a new 3-year or 5-year plan:
New Face Value, based on “savings” from the Phantoms web site:
$25.90 (I think; the chart below is a bit vague)
Season Ticket Chart, 2015-2016:
3-5 year full season tickets
1 year season ticket options
Implications and analysis:
I notice that the “youth” option is no longer listed…I didn’t go for it last season because only one of my kids (and DiPro) would have qualified–the other would have been considered an adult. Then what? Pay at the door? Nah–plus harder to give the tickets away. They probably did away with it for those very reasons.
A two-dollar increase in my seat price is around 10% and doesn’t amount to a ton–but it does add up over the course of the season and the 5-year contract over multiple seats. For those considering season tickets, it does behoove you to lock it in because the savings can be significant over the course of the plan–and even more depending on how many seats you have.
As I wrote in my “Suggestion Box” column recently, the market will determine where these prices eventually end up. They’ll continue to increase them until the market can no longer support it–and that doesn’t take Jr’s AP Econ course to figure out. You can bet they won’t ever decrease the prices, but I’m wondering what they’ll do when folks come off of the 3- and 5-year initial plans and see the results of years of compounded increases. Perhaps they’ll be more flexible for fans who “re-up” coming out of these longer-term contracts. We’ll see.
What are the other benefits of holding a season ticket for the Phantoms? I’d be remiss if I didn’t list them:
- Same seats for each exciting game (and even the non-exciting ones… 😉 )
- Discount at the Phantoms’ Team Store. (I believe it was 10% last season, show your season ticket–wasn’t available until the start of the regular season, though. I tried.)
- Pre-sale opportunity for certain events at PPL Center. (May or may not be an advantage over merely being a member of the “Cyber Club,” which is free to sign up for.)
- Season Ticket Holder gift–last season, a special hockey stick.
- Phantoms Carnival (not listed as a benefit, but we had it last season.)
- 5-year contracts received a game in a party suite last season.
- 5-year contracts had their names on their seats last season.
- Full-color ticket booklet (last season, we’ll see for this season).
- Automatic entry in the “10 days of winning” contest–see next post.
So go ahead and grab your season tickets if you’re up to it. The price increases and the fees they add at the box office really make it worth it–not to mention the 9 benefits listed above. A nice side effect with these economic realities is that the secondary market is wide open to sell unused tickets: If my seats only cost me around $21 dollars, I can sell them at a nice profit and STILL undercut the box office price!
See you at the arena,