Thursday, June 20, 2024

Ticketmaster Mexico to switch to digital ticketing

Ticketmaster Mexico will replace paper tickets with a new form of digital ticket, which it hopes will combat issues with reselling, duplicates and fakes.

Event-goers will be able to buy tickets using the SafeTix app, via a user account verified with an email address and phone number. The app then creates a digital ticket that can be displayed on a mobile phone, with a dynamic barcode that changes every 15 seconds to prevent counterfeiting.

Government officials initially accused ticket sales and distribution company Ticketmaster of overselling the Dec. 10 and 11 Bad Bunny concerts in Mexico City.
Ticketmaster is implementing the new app to cut down on reselling and fraudulent tickets, as well as make the customer experience smoother. (Depositphotos)

Ticketmaster launches the new system in Mexico after it was forced to pay more than 18 million pesos (US $1 million) to 2,155 ticket holders who were denied entry to a Bad Bunny concert at Mexico City’s Azteca Stadium in December.

The venue saw dangerous crushes and repeated failures of the ticketing system, due to what Ticketmaster claimed was an unprecedented number of fake tickets. The company avoided a fine from the Federal Consumer Protection Agency (Profeco) by agreeing to pay disappointed ticket holders 100% of the ticket price, plus 20% compensation.

“The Ticketmaster SafeTix ticket is part of the technological and service evolution that the company is making for the benefit of consumers,” Ana María Arroyo, CEO of Ticketmaster Mexico, said at a press conference on Monday. “We seek to close spaces to illegal tickets and protect the user experience.”  

Arroyo took over direction of the company in January, tasked with promoting technological change. At Monday’s press conference, Arroyo explained that users will initially be able to choose between paper or digital tickets, but that paper tickets will be phased out over the coming months as people become familiarized with the new system.

The company faced significant backlash after thousands were denied entry to a concert by singer Bad Bunny due to what Ticketmaster called “an unprecedented number of fake tickets.” (Mario Jasso/Cuartoscuro)

“Migration [to digital tickets] is progressive and we expect it to be quite rapid,” she said. “It’s not a transition that we’re going to force, it’s a decision that users are going to make.”

As well as greater security, the SafeTix app offers other benefits, including a help button, advance registration for events, and improved systems for buying tickets.

“The virtual queue gives clarity and certainty to fans of the place they occupy for the acquisition of their tickets,” explained Alejandro Ordaz, Ticketmaster’s deputy director of marketing.

In-person ticketing for Ticketmaster Mexico currently requires customers to physically visit a Ticketmaster location after making an online purchase, often having to wait a significant length of time in order to obtain their printed tickets.

The SafeTix system is already in use in the United States and Canada, where about 20 million digital tickets were scanned last year. It will be implemented in Mexico alongside a new event entry system, called TM1 Entry, which speeds up the reading of legitimate tickets and facilitates the identification of fakes. 

With reports from El Universal, Reforma and Expansión

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