Tickets for the first live, sponsored Pokémon Go event went up for purchase yesterday, selling out in about 15 minutes. It’s no surprise that there are plenty available from third-party sellers, though, and they’re going for as much as 10 times the asking price.
Niantic set the price at $20 per ticket for Pokémon Go Fest, which takes place in Chicago’s Grant Park on July 22. The all-day event offers special challenges and rewards for participants, an exclusive in-game medal and chances to meet fellow team members. These incentives — as well as others available to Sprint and Boost Mobile subscribers, like an extra hour of playtime — helped move tickets quickly once they went live at 10 a.m. PT yesterday.
Some customers reported the event’s website crashed almost immediately after, however, and the Pokémon Go Twitter account confirmed tickets were gone half an hour after the sale opened. Not long after, fans found that many event passes were available on eBay, and at way, way higher prices.
Right now, individual tickets are going for nearly $300 from many sellers. One ticket’s even on eBay with an $800 price tag (or best offer, which will likely be much lower). There are also pairs of tickets going for somewhere between $200 and $1,250; the maximum number sellers appear to have in stock is four Pokémon Go Fest passes at once.
Several of these auctions have a lot of bids, indicating a high level of interest that won’t be thwarted by the huge price increase. It’s a shame that scalpers snapped up Pokémon Go Fest tickets in droves, but it looks like diehards won’t necessarily be deterred.
The good news is those who won’t be able to gain admission to Grant Park for the event next month will still have a chance to unlock its special rewards. Niantic promises more details on how in the coming weeks.