Coldplay’s upcoming concerts in Malaysia, Indonesia ignite ticket wars


Photo: Handout

The chance to see Coldplay (pic) perform in Indonesia and Malaysia for the first time, in November, has ignited a ticket war, according to news outlets and netizens, as fierce demand has led to tickets for the British band’s concerts being resold for six times the original price.

The rock band announced in May that they would be playing their first concert in Indonesia – on Nov 15 at Jakarta’s Gelora Bung Karno Main Stadium – as part of the Asia leg of their Music Of The Spheres World Tour.

PK Entertainment and TEM Presents are the local concert promoters.

Pre-sale tickets exclusive to Indonesia’s Bank Central Asia cardholders that were released on Wednesday reportedly sold out within 30 minutes, according to local news outlets, though the opening was for two days.

Ticket sales for the public started on Friday, and local reports have quoted one of the concert promoters as saying that 70,000 tickets in total are up for grabs.

Fans, however, are still finding it hard to secure tickets, and many took to social media to air their frustrations – some of them complaining about queueing in an online waiting room with 500,000 ahead of them.

Demand for tickets is so high that some in Indonesia are trying to turn a quick dollar at massively inflated resale prices.

For instance, on e-commerce website Kick Avenue, Coldplay tickets in the priciest venue zone are being sold for 60 million rupiah (RM18,239), more than five times the original price of 11 million rupiah.

“It’s just annoying because those who really want to watch have been waiting for years and they can’t get a ticket because they lost to brokers,” said one netizen.

The outrage comes on the back of already negative reactions to concert ticket prices – which range from 800,000 rupiah to 11 million rupiah – which some felt were too high.

Local musician Fiersa Besari posted on Twitter on May 11: “Eleven million. That’s 22 million for a pair. I can buy bakso (meatballs) to treat an entire district (with that kind of money). But bakso sellers are around every day. Coldplay may never come back.”

News of the ticket war has reached the band. In a video interview with Indonesian YouTuber Najwa Shihab uploaded on Thursday, Coldplay frontman Chris Martin said that this will not be Coldplay’s only time in Indonesia, and that they will return to the archipelago to play again.

A day after it was posted, the video had been viewed more than 1.4 million times.

Tourism and Creative Economy Minister Sandiaga Uno also addressed the issue in an Instagram post on Wednesday, saying that work is ongoing to add more shows.

“For Coldplay lovers, please be patient. We are working with them on not just a one-day concert, but more. At least adding one more day,” he said.

Frustrated fans

A similar situation is playing out in Malaysia, where frustrated fans found it hard to get hold of tickets for Coldplay’s Nov 22 concert, after they were all snapped up within three hours on Wednesday.

Pre-sale tickets exclusive to cardholders of CIMB bank were also sold out within hours on Tuesday.

The band would be playing at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium in Kuala Lumpur. Ticket prices range between RM228 and RM3,088.

Demand for tickets has climbed to tremendous heights, with one prospective buyer on e-commerce marketplace Carousell offering to pay RM111,111 for the chance to see Coldplay live.

The buyer is seeking tickets in Category 1, originally priced at RM1,288, and Category 2, originally priced at RM758.

There was no mention of the number of tickets wanted, based on checks by The Straits Times.

Due to sky-high demand, scalpers are having a field day, with one offering tickets for as much as RM43,000 each on Carousell.

English-language daily The Star reported on Wednesday that the cheapest ticket available was being sold for RM1,749 on online ticket marketplace Viagogo – almost eight times more than the original price.

On Carousell, Category 4 and 5 tickets, originally priced at RM598 and RM498 respectively, were going for RM2,499 and RM3,000, added the report.

Tickets for the Kuala Lumpur concert are also listed on Carousell in Singapore, with prices ranging from S$350 to S$8,000. (RM1,180 to RM27,000)

Coldplay, who played two concerts in Singapore in April 2017, did not list the Republic as one of their tour stops. – The Straits Times/Asia News Network

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