toronto concert tickets ticketmaster

How to beat Ticketmaster and score tickets to the hottest summer shows

With peak concert season upon us, Toronto fans are doing everything in their power to get tickets to the hottest summer shows. 

Many are queuing online for hours before the initial ticket release times and even spending hundreds of dollars in order to secure a spot, but the one frustrating obstacle standing between them and the artist's they love are ticketing platforms, like Ticketmaster, that have made successfully checking out near impossible.

I’ve compiled insider tips, tricks, and recommendations that should guarantee more success and less stress when battling for tickets.
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Account setup

It might seem obvious, but this is arguably one of the most important and overlooked steps to being successful in purchasing a ticket online. 

Creating an account in advance allows you to pre-populate information, such as your name, address, phone number, and billing info, which are required in order to checkout.

This will save you invaluable time and result in a smoother checkout process.  

Sign in early and stay put

To avoid the dreaded, "due to high demand, ticket availability is extremely limited" message, log in early for queueing. 

Ticketmaster recommends that users sign into their account in a web browser or on the mobile app, and select the event they want to attend at least 10 minutes before the sale time – which is when queueing will begin. 

So, set some alarms (and the alarms for your alarms) and ensure you're ready to go the second the virtual doors open. 

Once you're in, remember the golden rule of online ticket queues:

Do not refresh your page! 

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Once queued in, you're officially in line. Refreshing guarantees you lose your spot. You may feel like you’re not moving, but just stick with it.

If you refresh, your ticket dreams are likely dead in the water.

Pre-sale & verified codes

High profile concerts like Drake or The Weeknd typically have pre-sale tickets available. These tickets are specifically selected to be sold ahead of the general public sale, and are exclusive to fans with a code. 

Pre-sales give fans the opportunity to snag a ticket without having to face general public queue wait times, which are notoriously long.

Usually, codes are sent to individuals via email or text. You can get them via ticketing platforms, credit card companies, and even telecom providers. Rogers wireless customers often get access to pre-sales once they text 'MUSIC' to 4746. 

Another way to get pre-sale codes is to follow the artists and the ticket sites on social media, as they often send out a message hinting at what the code will be just before the sale begins. 

One of the most convenient ways to get your hands on a code, is to stream the artist's music. It’s that simple!

Spotify has a #SpotifyFansFirst program that rewards fans with exclusive offers via email, sending them unique pre-sale codes to upcoming concerts.

To qualify, you just need to have an account and be a top listener of the artist you’d like to see live. 

Know where you want to sit

Have a list of sections you want to grab a seat in.

Seating arrangement depends on the venue, so take full advantage of sites like, which give users an inside look at what they can expect to see from any section, row, and seat. 

This helps narrow down your options by focusing on the seats you actually want.

@kaitlyn_amor Need help deciding what section to buy tickets in for the concert - is so helpful to show you what it looks like from every section #concerttips #concerttickets #renaissanceworldtour ♬ original sound - Beynet

Filter, filter, filter!

If you’re lucky enough to speed through the queue, you’ll be redirected to the ticket selection page. Here you will have to move quickly as tickets for major shows usually sell out within a matter of minutes. 

For best results you should use the filter options to your advantage.

If you’re going mostly for the vibe and aren’t too keen on dropping a fortune on your ticket, you can select the Standard Ticket type to see a list of face value tickets available for purchase. 

Likewise, if you want a more V.I.P. concert experience you can filter for Official Platinum or V.I.P. tickets. This will swiftly weed out your options and show you more relevant results based on your search criteria.

Box office backup plan

If all else fails, take it old-school and go to your venue's box office to buy a ticket.

In some cases, event organizers or venues may reserve tickets for the artists or their team. If these tickets are no longer needed, they are re-released to the public. 

This means you could get lucky enough to score face value tickets just before the event. Plus, box office tickets usually don’t have as many fees associated with them in comparison to online purchases.

It may mean a little more work but you could be in the presence of your favourite artists for a fraction of the price.

@m0t0papiii #stitch with @Sarah | @triciapatio #greenscreen Former box office/ticketing worker here, giving you some insight on how to get last minute tickets to concerts! Please let me know in the comments if you have any questions or if you’d like a part 2 ✨ #concert #concerts #concertcheck #concertoutfit #concertsquadgoals #concertseason #tickets #ticketsplease #ticketmaster #ticketsales #sostour #sostour2023 #music #musictok #concerttok ♬ original sound - MOTOPAPI

Now, you should be ready to take on the world – or at least Ticketmaster!

Lead photo by

Brian Morton

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