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Monday, February 25, 2013
Study compares Mets, StubHub prices

By Adam Rubin

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- The New York Mets began a “dynamic ticket pricing” system in 2012, in which ticket prices set by the team fluctuated as the game approached based on demand.

With the help of Mets fans who volunteered to collect data, assistant professors Stephen Shapiro of Old Dominion University and Joris Drayer of Temple University analyzed the data from 31 of 81 scheduled home dates.

Here are some findings:

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Courtesy of Stephen Shapiro and Joris DrayerA look at the average cost of low-priced seats at Mets games in 2012 purchased individually from the team and StubHub and as part of a season-ticket plan, depending on the date.


• Although dynamic pricing means the asking price for a ticket changes over time, the ticket-price fluctuation varied only modestly. In fact, the team price remained within 10 percent of the original asking price. For instance, for low-priced seats, the team’s dynamic asking price went on average from $30.81 in the preseason, to $30.71 fifteen days before the event, to $28.68 five days before the event, and to $27.87 a day before the event.

• The average dynamically priced ticket for a Mets game in 2012 was $94.80. That was compared with $93.27 for the cheapest-offered comparable seat on StubHub and $74.19 if purchased as part of a season-ticket plan.

• With the exception of low-priced seats, StubHub tickets tumbled from preseason asking prices. For instance, moderately priced seats on StubHub were going for $85.82 in the preseason, but had fallen to $68.86 within 15 days of the game.

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Courtesy of Stephen Shapiro and Joris DrayerA look at the average cost of premium-priced seats at Mets games in 2012 purchased individually from the team and StubHub and as part of a season-ticket plan, depending on the date.


• For lower-priced seats, the Mets’ price was, on average, about $7 higher than StubHub ($29.52 vs. $22.15). The season ticket price was the best value, at $17.15.

For mid-priced seats, the Mets’ average price was modestly higher than StubHub ($73.57 vs. $72.40). The per-game ticket for season ticket holders was $55.19.

In premium locations, dynamic ticket pricing offered through the Mets, on average, was less expensive than StubHub ($181.32 vs. $191.66). But, closer to the event, StubHub became the better value ($155.28 vs. $178.42 one day from the game). The season ticket remained the best value, at $150.25.

• In all three price levels, StubHub tickets were cheaper than via the team in the days closest to the event.

• Tickets offered before the season started were priced higher on StubHub than by the Mets for premium and moderate ticket levels. The team prices were higher for lower-priced seating in the preseason.

• Low and premium level seats offered through the team dropped slightly in price as the game approached, likely a reflection of the Mets’ subpar performance during the latter half of the season.

NOTE: The pricing data does not include fees charged by either StubHub or the Mets.

As part of the new StubHub-MLB agreement, StubHub agreed to add its fees into the price of the ticket up front. So starting this season, fans will see the total cost of the ticket initially. This was not done previously.