Will concerts require vaccinations or coronavirus tests before returning?

How Ticketmaster is planning the safe return of live shows
Crowds cheer
Photo credit Matt Cardy/Getty Images

Amid news a coronavirus vaccine will be distributed within the next year, Ticketmaster and Live Nation are mulling potential safety requirements for concert goers which include proof of vaccination, or negative COVID-19 testing.

Billboard reports the ticket vendor is brainstorming how their mobile app can help identify attendees who have been vaccinated or tested negative for the coronavirus within 24 to 72 hours of event entry. Preliminary thinking goes like this: Once a person purchases a ticket they will then need to verify their COVID safety through the app. Third party medical data companies, like CLEAR or IBM, would sync information with the platform to provide transparency.

The concert goer’s attendance to an event is predicated on a negative COVID-19 test or confirmation of vaccine.  A positive test or failure to vaccinate would result in denial of entry. Ticketmaster says they would not store or have access to person’s medical records.

WATCH MORE: How Will Vaccines Be Distributed and What Will it Cost?


Excitement is building for the return of concerts after pharmaceutical company Pfizer announced Monday, early results on a new vaccine showed a 90% efficacy rate. According to the CDC, that’s a significant gain compared with a 52% efficacy rate for the season influenza flu vaccine.

Ticketmaster believes they can use their proprietary SmartEvent system as a safeguard to help event organizers and fans social distance and contact trace if any mistakes occur. But the company will need to work with regional health officials to maintain certain protocols, like sanitation, mask compliance and social distancing.

Another potential roadblock for Ticketmaster could be the Food and Drug Administration, who have yet to approve third-party companies to provide real-time vaccination results. Ticketmaster’s president Mark Yovich tells Billboard they are confident that will change. "We’re already seeing many third-party health care providers prepare to handle the vetting -- whether that is getting a vaccine, taking a test, or other methods of review and approval - which could then be linked via a digital ticket so everyone entering the event is verified," he says.

"Ticketmaster’s goal is to provide enough flexibility and options that venues and fans have multiple paths to return to events…”

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