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The Austin City Limits Ticket Crash of 2013


Update: Austin City Limits Music Festival organizers just announced tickets are officially sold out for their second weekend. But tickets are still available on the secondary market, although they're selling fast there too.

Reseller StubHub currently has tickets left. Tickets for ACL’s second showing are also still for sale on Craigslist, with most passes going for well under the festival’s $225 face value. Austin City Limits Music Fest kicks back off this Friday.

Original story (Oct. 4): Don’t have tickets for the 2013 Austin City Limits Music Festival? Surprisingly, you’re in luck.

It’s the first year the popular fest has expanded to two weekends. And while tickets for this weekend are officially sold out on the ACL website, and next weekend’s three-days passes still retail for $225 – hundreds of passes are now available for either weekend from ticket reseller StubHub, starting at around $100. And that’s not even taking Craigslist into account, where there's a similar buyer’s market.

“What it suggests – at least so far – is the people who priced the tickets initially seemed to have forgotten that the second weekend is a novelty, and maybe there wouldn’t be quite so much demand for a second weekend,” says Daniel Hamermesh, a professor of economics at the University of Texas at Austin.

That said, despite the predictions on Reddit, prices might not dip much lower.

“Lets say this weekend turns out to be a great success, people love the music and think that next weekend’s is going to be as good – it wouldn’t surprise me if those prices went back up again,” Hamermesh says. “You never know. If this weekend turns out to be a bomb, my guess is those will go down."

Austin City Limits sure leaves a big financial footprint: In 2012, the festival was estimated to have generated over $100 million in local economic impact, according to a city-endorsed study. This year, ACL is expected to draw tens of thousands to Austin over the next two weeks. Twenty-five percent of festival participants come from outside of Texas and around the world, with most U.S. visitors will come from California, and most international visitors arriving from Mexico. 

Wells has been a part of KUT News since 2012, when he was hired as the station's first online reporter. He's currently the social media host and producer for Texas Standard, KUT's flagship news program. In between those gigs, he served as online editor for KUT, covering news in Austin, Central Texas and beyond.
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