Need a Burning Man Ticket Last Minute? Here’s How
Theoretically, you are not supposed to be able to get a Burning Man ticket this late in the game. But are you serious about still getting one? Burning Man tickets sold out within minutes of becoming available. The festival’s brilliant but underutilized Secure Ticket Exchange Program closed way back in April. Scalpers on StubHub are currently charging nearly $1,000 a pop for a single Burning Man ticket. You don’t have that kind of money and time’s running out. And if one more smug, ticket-holding zen motherfucker tells you, “Don’t worry, the universe will provide” you’ll feel like providing him with a broken clavicle.
But that smug, ticket-holding zen motherfucker is right. The universe will provide – to some random person who’s in the right place at the right time. You just need to bust your ass and network hard to make sure that random person is you. With Burning Man starting in just a few days, you need to pretty much camp out on Facebook and Craig’s List to nail that random situation that will indeed be nailable sometime in the days to come.
StubHub and eBay are the wrong way to get a Burning Man ticket. These are the right ways to get a Burning Man ticket at the 11th hour.
The Burning Man tickets on Craig’s List this year do not currently have any free deals like the above-seen ad from 2014, but you never know what will happen. There are several $600 to $800 tickets just sitting there waiting to be bought right now. In some cases, Burners need rides and are willing to sell you a ticket in exchange for this. (If the Craig’s List post contains a link, beware that it is probably a scam. Look for ‘text-only’ posts.) A few available tickets get posted every day, and those posts get deleted quick because the posters get inundated with replies. You need to focus on replying as quickly as possible when the ticket is posted. I am told anecdotally by many people that the prices go down and the number of available tickets goes up on Craig’s List once Burning Man officially starts and life events start thwarting peoples’ plans to leave town.
Then there’s this sad asshole, who is clearly using his extra ticket to find a woman who will have sex with him. In a post entitled “Burning Man ticket trade for playa companion,” an obviously sexually frustrated tech bro is looking for a “single(ish) female” to attend with him in a ” slave, uh I mean companion” capacity and “make out and maybe even have dirty dusty burner sex, so please have no rotting teeth and be a good kisser.”
Your best bet is to just post to Facebook that you need a Burning Man ticket and follow up like mad on every single lead you get in the comments. Your second-best bet is to constantly check the Facebook pages of well-known Burning Man camps and monitor Burning Man hashtag on Facebook, which prioritizes your friends’ posts first, then shows statuses from a non-stop parade of random Facebook idiots posting about Burning Man. A few of these posts every day will be genuine ticket offers. Someone needs a driver, someone needs a solderer, someone needs an immediate cash buyer in the Fairfield-Suisun City area because they’re leaving in an hour…it’s random, it’s crazy, and you need to hunker down and constantly monitor that page for any and all offers whose random criteria you might meet.
“You must live on your social media so you are first to reply,” says local filmmaker Alexandra Liss, whose name you’ll recognize for her work on this fine website. Ms. Liss has her own last-minute-Burning-Man-ticket-on-Facebook miracle story that should drive this point home.
KNOW PEOPLE WHO KNOW PEOPLE
Alexandra was and continues to be romantically involved with an Andrew de Andrade, who is named in the Facebook miracle post above. “Being [Andrew’s] over-planning girlfriend, I was not going to go unless I could find him a ticket. We were not looking for a free ticket,” she recalls. “The burn already started, this was 8/28 . Most tickets were already gone or used. I was a message away from giving away my ticket and not going.”
“When I saw that email, I almost had a heart attack – but the good kind, “ Alexandra says. “It was as though the playa gods were looking out for us.”
Now that’s the kind of Girlfriend Experience I’m in favor of.
I don’t care how hopeless your ticket quest seems, keep at it. Take it from the guy above, who lost his ticket on the sidewalk in The Mission but still managed to get it back. I cannot track him down or name him because he’s already out at Burning Man, but this is his story.
“Yesterday afternoon I went to pick up my Burning Man ticket. After walking home for about 10 minutes, I realize it is not in my pocket. In despair, I spend 1.5 hours searching the streets of the Mission and find nothing. I finally give up and head home, taking the loss and starting the chase to find a new ticket. One of the places I check is Craig’s List, where I also posted the message ‘Dropped my ticket! Need a new one!’
Today I get an email with one line: ‘Where did you drop it?’ Not getting my hopes up yet, I write back and describe my route.
The message back tells me, ‘Yep. I found your ticket on Van Ness yesterday. I’m willing to bet it’s yours.’
What insanity is this? I dropped my ticket on the streets of San Francisco and I got it back!
Playa magic hits early this year!
So network like a banshee and camp out on Facebook and Craig’s List. And if you run into that guy at Burning Man, man will you have some stories to share.