GREENSBORO — Haven’t snapped up tickets yet to Paul McCartney’s Oct. 30 first-ever concert at the Greensboro Coliseum?
With a little luck and a lot of cash, it’s not too late.
Tickets still are available but are going fast — even with a top price of $250 plus fees at Ticketmaster.com.
And seat choices are narrowing, particularly for the least-expensive $59.50 seats.
Concert promoter AEG Live declined to say how many tickets have been sold since they went on sale to American Express card members on June 26 and to the general public a week ago.
“We’re not sold out, but it’s getting close,” said Andrew Brown, the coliseum’s public relations manager. “We think we will have people from all over the East Coast coming to this show.”
Rarely do concerts sell out immediately these days, Brown said.
Since the recession, more ticket buyers wait until closer to the actual show date. That applies not just to concerts, but also to family shows such as the circus and Disney on Ice, Brown said.
“They are trying to hold onto their money longer if they can,” Brown said.
Shows that sell out quickly tend to be boy bands and other acts with teen appeal, when parents and grandparents buy tickets for their children and grandchildren.
In the fastest concert sellout in coliseum history, the Backstreet Boys sold more than 22,000 tickets in 78 minutes to their February 2000 concert, Brown said.
Miley Cyrus’ concert sold out swiftly in 2007, prompting some families to pay as much as four times the face value for tickets from online scalpers.
Cyrus sold out again in 2009, as did Taylor Swift in 2011 and 2013, and Justin Bieber in 2013.
But so did popular country singer George Strait, 62, when he made a March 2013 stop with Martina McBride on his farewell tour.
George Strait tickets had a top price of $92.50. Most McCartney fans will pay more to hear the former Beatle and his band cover his entire catalog from The Beatles to Wings to his time as a solo artist.
About 16,000 seats will be available, based on the configuration of the stage, the set and the seating, Brown said.
Fans who came to the coliseum box office in the last few days found that remaining $59.50 seats were single seats scattered around the arena.
But seats still were available for $99.50, $165 and $250, plus fees for those bought online at Ticketmaster.com.
And these days, the vast majority of concert-goers buy online, Brown said.
If $250 sounds high, Ticketmaster.com also sells packages with special amenities. For $1,500, the “Hot Sound Package” will buy a first-level seat, entrance to the sound check, a pre-show reception, merchandise and a collectible laminate to remember the night.
Some fans were stunned to see ticket prices on other websites as high as $2,888. But those are resale marketplaces where prices are set by third-party sellers.
Bill and Carol Peteritas of Kernersville drove to the coliseum box office, where they could avoid online fees, get personal service and feel more comfortable buying tickets.
They splurged on two $250 tickets.
Bill Peteritas, 65, remembers watching The Beatles on “The Ed Sullivan Show” 50 years ago.
The couple has attended hundreds of rock concerts over the years but never has seen McCartney.
“It’s the chance of a lifetime to see an icon in concert,” Bill Peteritas said.
Terry Hayworth, 59, of Oak Ridge had hoped for the $59.50 seats.
But when he found only single seats, he shelled out $165 each for two seats as an anniversary gift for his wife, Brenda.
“What you will remember is the experience,” Hayworth said. “You won’t remember the price.”