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Assigned Seating - Under free seating where “seats” are...

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Assigned Seating The . rst de. ning characteristic of ticket pricing is assigned seating, where each seat is numbered and consumers buy the right to a speci. c seat. Because each seat offers a distinct experience, reserved seating opens the possibility to re. ne further the practice of differential pricing beyond segmenting the venue in sections (Rosen and Rosen. eld, 1997). Potentially, each seat can be priced individually. In addition, assigned seating is also closely related to the issues of congestion. To understand this point, it will help to contrast assigned seating with “free seating.” Free seating was used in the early days of theatre and opera where the bulk of the audience sat on benches or stood, and it persists today in many venues.
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Unformatted text preview: Under free seating, where “seats” are not clearly de. ned because the audience is shepherded into a common area and no seats are reserved, the quality of the theatre experience is uncertain. Consumers do not know if they will be able to secure a desirable location and, more importantly, the physical space for consumers may become congested, especially in prime viewing locations where the crowd mashes together. Under free seating, the market for premium locations cannot clear through prices. However, it may clear through quality, since quality declines with congestion, and one would expect congestion, and therefore quality, to vary across locations....
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