You want to go to a hot regular season basketball game? It could cost you a fortune thanks to dynamic demand pricing.

Concert promoters and sports teams have decided they're not going to let the scalpers have all the fun. They're bringing true economics to the cost of buying a ticket. I've talked over the last couple of years about new efforts, especially with the San Francisco Giants, using yield management software (aka dynamic demand pricing) to adjust prices up and down as demand picked up and waned for a sports event.

One of my TV producers Jason wanted to go to NBA game featuring the Miami Heat -- one of the hottest tickets in the NBA -- and the team's website was offering $600 seats for nowhere near close to courtside.

This is the new reality. You'll see more and more of this kind of thing with baseball and basketball teams, both sports that play very long schedules.

Not all games created equal. On the flipside, if a bum team comes to town that means dirt cheap tickets. Pricing will be impacted by the day of the week, the opponent, what time in the season it is and other factors. The price is no longer the price. If you're seeing tickets that are too much, try waiting it out. If the event doesn't sell well, prices will go down, not up.

Under this new model, baseball games can end up being as cheap as $3 a seat or as much as a couple hundred depending on the opponent and where you're sitting.

When it comes to concerts, the price points are moving further and further apart inside the arena. Super fans might pay very high prices for close up seats, while back of the house seats are typically very cheap. So somebody on a tight budget who can't see afford to see the Rolling Stones for $60 may be able to see them with high power binoculars from the top rows for $20.

The key thing to remember is that the price is no longer the price!

Image of Clark Howard About the author: Clark Howard

Clark Howard is a consumer expert whose goal is to help you keep more of the money you make. His national radio show and website show you ways to put more money in your pocket, with advice you can trust. View More Articles

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