Can You Buy NBA Tickets at the Arena?


If you are in need of NBA tickets, you might be wondering what purchase options you have. Are there still ticket booths on site or do you need to use an online ticket broker? Can you buy NBA tickets at the arena?

Yes, you can buy NBA tickets at the arena, even on the same day of the game. Of course, there are risks involved if you plan to buy at the arena – the obvious one being that perhaps the game will be sold out when you arrive.

In fact, if you are looking for NBA tickets on the same day of the game, sometimes buying online gets you the better deal. Many online ticket brokers will reduce the price of tickets the closer it gets to game time. This is due to the fact that they don’t want to have to eat the ticket and get nothing out of it. As game time approaches, ticket brokers are motivated to move tickets and get something for them.

In this article let’s explore your options for buying NBA tickets, including buying NBA tickets at the arena, and why it might make more sense to buy from a ticket broker’s website or app.

Can You Buy NBA Tickets at the Arena?

Yes, as we discussed above, you can still buy NBA tickets at the arena’s ticket booths. You can also purchase advanced game tickets at the arena ticket booth as well. But, does it make sense to do this? Should you wait to walk up to the ticket window to purchase your NBA tickets at the arena?

The answer is, it depends. Many fans today prefer to rely on online ticket brokers because the purchase and selection of tickets through these well-known reputable ticket brokers is easier and more convenient (and sometimes cheaper) than waiting in line at the arena, and running the risk of not getting a ticket.

But, yes, the ability to buy tickets at the gate is a courtesy available to fans. Overall, it isn’t one that is used nearly as often today as it once was. Online ticket brokers have become a trustworthy and dependable option for many fans who just prefer to pull out their phone and buy tickets as opposed to buying on site at the arena.

If you choose to buy at the arena, it is a fairly simple (but at times annoying) process. You just find an open box office window, stand in line, and request available tickets. The ticket representative will ask how many seats you need. Again, you risk missing out altogether if the game is sold out.

Buying on site can be a bit annoying. You will stand in line, then have to choose a seat quickly once you reach the front of the line, with the pressure of others waiting in line behind you. There will be charts and a list of seats, including seat prices. If it is a decision you don’t feel like being rushed through, I suggest buying online through a reputable ticket broker.

Waiting to buy tickets for an NBA game on the day of the game is something usually reserved for spur of the moment decisions. You can get your tickets the old-fashioned way by walking up to the ticket booth. But, is it the best way to get the best deals or the best seats? In my opinion, no.

Are NBA Tickets Cheaper at the Arena?

Some NBA fans assume that standing in the ticket line at the arena will save them money on their tickets. This is not necessarily true. In fact, there are various situations where the opposite is true. Tickets at the stadium turn out to be more costly.

As we discussed earlier, if you are looking for NBA tickets on the same day of the game, many online ticket brokers will reduce the price of tickets the closer it gets to game time. Eating tickets does not make financial sense for ticket brokers, so they are highly motivated to move tickets the closer it gets to game time. This may allow you to find a nice deal on the same day of the game.

Plus, if you buy online, you’ll have your ticket in hand and not have to wait in line, which just makes everything about the process more convenient. Ultimately, buying tickets at the arena does not guarantee a cheaper price, and you risk not getting a ticket at all.

3 Reasons Why Buying NBA Tickets at the Arena is a Bad Idea

#1 No Tickets Available – The most obvious reason that buying your NBA tickets at the gate is a bad idea is that there may not be any tickets available when you arrive. This will obviously depend on the popularity of the game you hope to attend. Is Lebron in town? Or some other superstar? Decent chance the game sells out.

Even if it isn’t sold out, there will be less seats for you to choose from. This means you might not like the seats you get, or the price you get. Sticking to an online ticket broker can give you time to browse your options before you get to the arena.

#2 Missed Deals – Unlike buying your tickets online, when you walk up to the box office to buy your tickets at the arena, you lose the ability to compare prices. As we mentioned earlier, when a sellout isn’t an imminent possibility, often you can get a good deal close to tip-off.

When you choose to buy your tickets at the box office on the day of the game, you will pay the posted ticket price at the gate. There will be no chance of saving a few bucks on the ticket price at the box office. It is worth browsing the online options just to price compare.

#3 Seat Selection – Being able to take your time and scan available seats is useful, especially when you want a block of seats together. It’s not something that is easily rushed.

To me here is one of the biggest differences between buying online versus buying at the arena: do you want to make your ticket decision rushed at the front of a crowded line, or from the comfort of your couch? Buying online lets you take as much time as you need to browse without feeling hurried.

Paul Johnson

Paul has been with us from our beginnings. He focuses on a wide range of sports, including NFL, NBA, MLB and golf.

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