NEW YORK – April 19, 2021 – As COVID-19 restrictions are eased and more Americans get vaccinated, only about 1 in 6 (16%) U.S. adults currently has a ticket to an upcoming live event, according to a new Bankrate.com report. Younger adults – Gen Z (ages 18-24) and millennials (ages 25-40) – are far more likely than those who are older to hold tickets (26% of those ages 18- 40 vs. just 10% of those who are older). These young adults are also more likely to prefer events that require proof of vaccination to enter.
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Overall, 8% are currently ticketholders for an upcoming concert or music festival, 6% have tickets to a live theater or comedy performance, 5% to a professional or college sporting event, and 2% to some other public activity requiring advance ticket purchases.
Just under 1 in 5 (19%) fully vaccinated individuals have tickets, an insignificant difference from those who expect to be fully vaccinated soon (20%) and those who expect to be vaccinated at some point, but not for a while (18%). Just 12% who do not plan to get vaccinated have purchased tickets and just 4% who are not sure have done so.
Of those who have tickets to a professional or college sporting event, the average amount of money spent is $387, while the average spend for concerts/music festivals and live theater/comedy performances is $227 and $191, respectively.
“For all that we’ve been hearing about pent-up demand and revenge spending, the vast majority of Americans are taking a wait-and-see attitude when it comes to live events,” said Bankrate.com senior industry analyst Ted Rossman. “The Major League Baseball season, which began earlier this month, provides an interesting case study. Just two of the league’s 30 teams will permit more than 33% capacity. Indoor venues – such as those which host NBA and NHL teams, concerts and plays – are proceeding with even more caution. Our data suggests that consumers are not clamoring for these kinds of tickets right now. Retailers, restaurants and even travel seem to be rebounding much more quickly than large public events.”
Surprisingly, vaccine passports don’t make much of a difference. Just 38% of U.S. adults would be more likely to attend a public ticketed event if the organizer required proof of the vaccine (18% much more likely + 20% somewhat likely). Meanwhile, 34% said vaccine passports would make no difference, and 28% would be less likely to attend (23% much less likely + 5% somewhat less likely).
Vaccine passports make a difference to the highest-income households ($80K+); 51% of them are more likely to attend an event if a vaccine passport is required, compared with 40% of middle-income households ($40K-80K) and 30% of lower-income households (under $40K). This is in line with the likelihood of getting vaccinated, which rises with income. Some 61% of those with annual household incomes over $80K are fully vaccinated or expect to be soon, compared with 55% in the middle-income bracket and 46% in the lowest income bracket.
Gen Zers (46%) and millennials (45%) are more likely to prefer events requiring vaccine passports than Gen Xers (37%) and baby boomers (31%).
Bankrate.com commissioned YouGov Plc to conduct the survey. All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. Total sample size was 3,254 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken March 24-27, 2021. The survey was carried out online and meets rigorous quality standards. It employed a non-probability-based sample using both quotas upfront during collection and then a weighting scheme on the back end designed and proven to provide nationally representative results.