Ticketmaster offering free tickets to Tampa concerts as part of lawsuit settlement
Did you buy tickets through Ticketmaster.com between 1999 and 2013? Congratulations: You could become the proud owner of some free concert tickets.
As part of a 2015 settlement in the class-action lawsuit Schlesinger v. Ticketmaster, in which the ticket retailer was alleged to have tacked on "deceptive and misleading" purchase fees, anyone who purchased tickets through the company's website is eligible for discounts and vouchers for hundreds of events around the country.
On Tuesday, Ticketmaster's parent company Live Nation unveiled the initial roster of 450 concerts eligible for voucher claims, including 16 at Tampa's MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre. By midday Tuesday, several of these shows had already sold out of their allotment of voucher-eligible tickets:
June 25: Taste of Chaos Tour with Dashboard Confessional and Taking Back Sunday
June 30: Steely Dan and Steve Winwood
July 2: Slipknot and Marilyn Manson
July 3: Sublime With Rome
July 16: Dierks Bentley
July 17: G-Eazy and Logic
July 21: Snoop Dogg and Wiz Khalifa
July 23: Counting Crows and Rob Thomas
July 26: Gwen Stefani
Aug. 11: Outcry Tour
Aug. 12: Brad Paisley
Aug. 15: Def Leppard
Aug. 27: Brantley Gilbert
Sept. 22: Heart, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts and Cheap Trick
Oct. 1: Prophets of Rage
Oct. 11: Korn and Breaking Benjamin
"Okay," you're thinking. "Free concert tickets. Cool. How do I claim them?"
Ticketmaster should have sent you an email detailing the settlement (mine was dated May 17 with the subject line "Schlesinger v. Ticketmaster Class Action Settlement - Notice Regarding Discount and Ticket Codes.") Here's an FAQ that explains everything in detail. But in short, follow these instructions:
1. Log into Ticketmaster. Click on "Active Vouchers."
2. In theory, you will see voucher codes available for redemption through Ticketmaster or Live Nation. At the moment, high traffic is creating an "overwhelming load to our systems," according to the site, so you might have to exercise patience.
3. Purchase general admission tickets to a concert on this list, including the 16 Tampa concerts mentioned above. On the billing page, click "Voucher Code" and enter the appropriate code. A "discount code" will give you a $2.25 discount on a single ticket. A "ticket code" may be redeemed for a pair of tickets to an eligible event.
Some things to remember: All free and discounted tickets are limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis — several eligible Tampa events, including concerts by Gwen Stefani and Dierks Bentley, sold out of their allotments quickly on Tuesday. Depending on how many tickets you purchased during the class-action settlement period, you may redeem up to 17 discount and ticket codes between now and June 18, 2020 (many more eligible concerts will be added in the coming months and years), though there are limits to the number of tickets you can get for each show.
Also, note that vouchers are only available to those who purchased tickets via Ticketmaster.com, not over the phone in person. But if you had physical tickets shipped your way via UPS, you could be eligle for future UPS discounts, too.
A number of Ticketmaster users have already registered complaints that the redemption process isn't working, but that's likely due to early technological hiccups and high site traffic. Give it a day or so and you might have better luck.
-- Jay Cridlin