The late bird the worm catches
Tickets for Korean actor's first fan meeting here 'sold out' for early birds
The early bird usually catches the worm, but this was not the case for fans of a popular Korean actor yesterday.
Local fans of Kim Soo Hyun, from hit TV series My Love From The Star, were in tears yesterday morning when they saw on the Sistic website that tickets to his fan meeting here on April 27 had "sold out" in 20 minutes.
Many had woken up well before the online sale of the tickets began at 10am, so that they would be ready to buy the coveted Cat 1 tickets that cost $238 each.
Some of them cried as they were desperate to get the best seats at Singapore Expo Hall 1, where the 2014 Kim Soo Hyun Asia Tour 1st Memories In Singapore will be held.
These despondent fans ended up buying the Cat 3 ($138) tickets, which they said was the only category available at that time. Altogether, 2,500 tickets divided into three categories - Cat 1 ($238), Cat 2 ($188) and Cat 3 ($138) - were up for sale.
The New Paper understands that "late" fans who booked tickets at 3pm - five hours after tickets were released for sale - managed to clinch the Cat 1 tickets and could not believe their luck.
Student Sherjin Lee, 17, told The New Paper: "I forgot that the sales for Kim Soo Hyun's fan meeting started (yesterday), so I went online around 1pm.
"My friends told me that tickets for Cat 1 and Cat 2 had been sold out and they had to buy the Cat 3 ones. But I decided to try anyway and managed to buy a ticket for a fantastic Cat 1 seat!"
A check with a Sistic telephone operator revealed a possible reason for this unique situation.
When one selects a seat on the ticket booking website, the ticket would be held for 15 minutes for the consumer to complete the sale.
Said the operator: "When many people started booking tickets at 10am, they held many tickets.
"When all the tickets were temporarily reserved, the system would reflect that there are none available for sale. Eventually, when these tickets were released and taken off hold, they became available again. Customers called to ask about the Cat 1 tickets and I told them to try again later."
As of 4.30pm yesterday, Cat 1 and Cat 2 tickets for single seats were still available.
So why were many tickets put on hold in the first place?
Student Lea Hansen, 22, said: "On the Sistic website, you can open as many windows as you want for separate transactions.
"I opened up more than 10 because the seats are randomly assigned once you start a transaction. The more transactions I start, the better my chances are of getting better seats.
"Starting a transaction lets you hold the seat for 15 minutes and it's fuss-free because you don't have to make payment first. At the end of two hours, I picked the best seats that were assigned to me and bought them. I guess the extra 10 or so tickets that I had on hold were released then."
Miss Helena Lim, a 24-year-old freelance model who had woken up at 8am and ended up with Cat 3 tickets, said: "I couldn't stop crying because I didn't get the best seats despite the effort I put in. It's Kim Soo Hyun's first fan meeting in Singapore, that's what makes this so sad!"