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Dealing with scalpers at Air Canada Centre?

1 answer

Simon Drum
Simon Drum


If you are trying to get a ticket to a Toronto Maple Leafs game then it is almost impossible to get one unless it is through a scalper.

Why is this?

Well firstly you’re in Canada, a country built on hockey. Then secondly Toronto is the biggest city in this hockey mad country; it draws in over 10 million people all supporting just ONE team. With only 19,000 people fitting inside the stadium… well you can do the math. 

With this in mind, it is no surprise that Toronto scalpers are the most successful in the world. When you go to an Olympic Games anywhere in the world, it is very likely that if you talk to a scalper at an Olympic Games event, they are from Toronto.

You can get a good deal for games against irrelevant teams like Arizona or Florida for e.g. because the Scalpers are desperate to get something for them.

However if it is the Montreal Canadiens or Chicago Blackhawks in town, you have to do your research online beforehand to get a good idea of what you are dealing with. For example, look online on StubHub to get an idea of what the market is like. Other advice is to spark up a friendly conversation with them and become ‘friends’ with them, so they give you a ‘nice person’ discount.

Take note that scalpers work in teams, so if you try to bargain with different guys, it is likely that they are working all for the same ‘guy/team’.

If you are coming from out of town, they can take advantage of you if you haven’t done your research.


These are obviously the same guys scalping tickets for the Leafs games, but there is a different feel around Raptors games. While Leafs games are notorious for attracting white, male, older, corporate fans; Raptors games attract people of all cultures, a much younger crowd and are more accessible to more people.

Raptors games will often have tickets available online, but if there are sell-outs then you will have to go through scalpers either online or at the stadium.

Similar to the Leafs, you will not have much bargaining power if the Lakers, Knicks or Celtics are in town.Where you will get a great seat, at a good deal, is when Sacramento or Utah are in town.

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