I’ve been working on Broadway and off-Broadway shows since I moved to the city 5 years ago. Needless to say, I’ve seen A LOT of shows and I have rarely ever paid full ticket price. Here are my tips so you can too.
Playbill keeps a great list of rush and lottery policies for all Broadway shows here.
A certain number of seats for each show are chosen (usually front row or limited view) and a lottery is drawn, with the seats generally between $30-40. You used to have to go in person which made entering multiple lotteries difficult. But now almost all are exclusively online so you can enter multiple at a time.
If you win, you’ll have about an hour to pay and then you’ll pick up the tickets at the box office.
You show up at the box office when it opens, wait in line, and a certain number of seats are available for purchase. For certain shows, it may be beneficial to get there even earlier as people will line up early to ensure a cheap ticket. But don’t fear because often they will give a deal to those at the back of the line.
Tickets are general $27-50 and require an ID. If you are a student, there may also be an additional rush for you with your ID.
TodayTix is an app where you can buy tickets up to two weeks in advance. You purchase on the app and then meet a TodayTix Concierge agent outside of the show 30 minutes before (they’re wearing a bright red shirt or jacket so you can’t miss them) and then you’re off!
TodayTix also offers a few lottery & rush tickets to Broadway shows, plus off-Broadway and even Met tickets.
For $10 off your first order, use code AOOSA.
I’m sure everyone has heard of the TKTS booths for discount tickets. It’s great for day of tickets, especially if you are flexible as it is first-come, first-serve. Download the app and you can see what they’re offering, as well as the wait time.
TDF or the Theatre Development Fund is a nonprofit that gives ticket discounts to its members. Tickets are never over $47 and Broadway shows, as well as off-Broadway, concerts, opera and more are offered.
For $34 a year, you can become a member too. AND you don’t even have to be a theater person to join – you can be a student, teacher, recent grad, retiree, or FREELANCER. Here’s the full list.
Now here’s the real question – how do I get Hamilton tickets?
It’s no secret that Hamilton is the hottest ticket in town. I have seen the show but I know people through the Broadway community and I did still pay a pretty penny. But there are ways for a normal person to get tickets. Here are my tips:
Win the Lottery – Literally. Enter the digital lottery for every performance you can. Tickets are only 1 Hamilton each (haha) or $10. You can enter at Broadwaydirect.com
Cancellation Line – Since most people buy tickets so far in advance, cancellations do happen. You can check at the box office from the time it opens until show time. Since cancellations can happen during the day, tickets are offered to the next person who walks up to the window. So you can get lucky.
Standing Room – When Broadway shows are sold out, standing room is offered – they’re spots along the back of the orchestra. You will be standing but you get a pretty good view and you’re still in the room where it happens. Since all Hamilton performances are sold out until eternity, standing room will always be offered. You can purchase these seats at the box office the day of, same deal as the cancellation line.
Buy Far in Advance – Tickets are released in blocks, therefore there are tickets in X amount of months that have not been purchased yet. Follow Hamilton on social media or enter your email address on the website for the latest news. When you get word that a new blocks of tickets have been released, run to Ticketmaster ASAP and grab your seats.
WHAT NOT TO DO:
Do NOT buy tickets from a reseller. You will pay a crazy amount of money and the show (including its creator and original cast who receive royalties) will get none of it because robots are able to scoop up tickets and charge you hundreds, or I’ve even heard thousands, over what the ticket price is and they get ALL the profit. The show is good but it’s going to be here for awhile so wait your turn, save some money and try my tips above.
For specific tips on getting tickets to the 2017 Tony Award winning shows, check out my post here.