How DO Seat Fillers Receive Free Tickets?

It's Easy - AND Free Means Free!

Free Tickets for Seat Fillers - How? When? Where?

by Lu - OTL City Guides & Seat Fillers

When I try to explain to someone how OTL works, I always start with two things:

  1. Seat Fillers don’t pay admission to anything they attend
  1. How OTL Seat Fillers receive free tickets

It’s part of a little elevator speech that I have but typically leads to a lengthier discussion. After all, fans of live entertainment are surprised to hear that they can be seat fillers in Chicago, San Francisco, London, and other major markets. Anyone with even some familiarity with the concept assumes that it’s limited to Los Angeles and maybe New York City.

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What Types of Free Tickets Do Seat Fillers Receive?

Before I get to the good stuff (aka comp ticket privileges), I want to share a bit more of my elevator speech. The first thing you’ll want to know is what kinds of tickets are available as a local seat filler.

Now, set aside the concept of awards shows seat filling. OTL Seat Filler opportunities are entirely different. If any celebrities are involved, they’re on stage. They’re not waiting for you to keep their chair warm while they take a bathroom break or accept their statue.

US and UK Shows and Events

Over the past seven years, OTL has been fortunate to share opportunities to attend all kinds of shows, events, and activities across the US and UK.

The big three for seat fillers (in order of popularity):

  • Theatre
  • Comedy
  • Music

Plays and musicals are the most popular and frequently offered, regardless of location. Even promoters in Austin and Nashville (two of the top music capitals in the US) provide more theatre tickets than anything else.

More Than Theatre, Music, and Comedy

However, the sky’s the limit when it comes to the types of free seat filler tickets. In addition to the big three, OTL members have attended book signings, lectures, conferences, expos, sporting events, burlesque, ballet, opera, casino events, classes, escape rooms, and more.

free tickets

When Do Seat Fillers Receive Free Tickets?

Now that you’re aware of what types of free tickets you’d receive as a member of OTL Seat Fillers, the next question is usually, “how often?”

  • Do you attend one event a month?
  • Is it hard to get on the list?
  • Are there any fees involved?

I’ll go through the popular questions one by one to give you a good feel for free ticket availability. We like our future seat filler members to have as much information as possible to make sure it’s a good fit.*

*Just a little side note, though. There’s no long-term commitment if you want to give OTL Seat Fillers a try. You can join with a one-month or three-month membership and cancel anytime. Plus, our dues range is only 4.00 to 15.00 monthly. The amount depends on your location and whether you register a two or four-seat membership.  

But I digress.

Do You Attend One Event a Month?

How many shows or events you attend as a seat filler depends on the number of shows posted and your social calendar.

Everything is a surprise when you’re a member of OTL. We rely on our entertainment partners so that seat fillers receive free tickets. But we only receive allotments if there’s something on the event calendar and the venue isn’t sold out.

That’s also the reason why show postings come in last minute. While we love to start taking reservations early, event promoters usually prefer to wait. They need to sell as many seats as possible before offering comps to seat fillers.

Ever-changing availability

One month you might see ten different free ticket opportunities in your hometown, and the next month, there might not be anything. But you’re not limited to how many shows you can attend as long as tickets are still available.

So, the short answer is that there’s no limit to the number of events you can attend. But there’s no guarantee as to that number of events in any given month.

Is It Hard to Get On the list?

The quick and easy answer is “no.” It’s not hard to get on the list. Yes, some performances posted for seat fillers fill up quickly. But, for the most part, you won’t be sitting on the sidelines.

OTL’s entertainment partners are pretty generous when they have enough tickets available. They love a full house. Plus, seat fillers are outstanding audience members. They applaud enthusiastically, buy concessions, and add to the overall atmosphere.

Are There Any Fees Involved?

This is the question that I love to answer more than anything else. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve tried to explain local seat filling by saying that all members have to pay is really low monthly membership dues, and the follow-up question is, “yeah, but how much are the tickets?”

The answer is zero.

Seat Fillers receive free tickets, period. They pay membership dues but nothing more. That means there are no ticket fees, upcharges, or anything unexpected. OTL members are comp ticket VIPs.

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Where and How Do Seat Fillers Receive Free Tickets?

I hope I’ve been painting a clear picture of how OTL Seat Filling works. You now know that seat fillers are members of an exclusive club. They pay low membership dues for the privilege of receiving free tickets, and there are no limits as to the number of shows and events.

What’s left? How it all works – and it’s a quick and easy process.

Members Only

Once you’re a member of OTL Seat Fillers, you set up a username and password that’ll get you into the private members-only area on 24/7.

The member's area is where all of the secret seat filling opportunities are housed. I neglected to mention that OTL partners and free ticket offerings are private. OTL and its members never publicly share who is providing the complimentary admission. That would interfere with the venues’ regular ticket sales.

So, what happens in Vegas (I mean OTL Seat Fillers) stays in OTL Seat Fillers!

There’s a two-step process for seat fillers to receive complimentary tickets:

  1. Make a reservation in the OTL members' area
  1. Show up at the venue about an hour before showtime to pick up the tickets (or check in)

Easy, right?

While seat fillers make or change reservations through the club, OTL never handles the seating itself. Seat Fillers receive free tickets directly from the venue, typically at the box office will call window.

Will Call

Oh, and if you have any visions of printing out coupons or vouchers like you’re turning in a Groupon, set those aside. The process of receiving the free tickets is much more upscale. If you have a reservation, you’re on the will-call list.

All you have to do is go to the window (or other designated location) and provide your ID. There’s no explanation necessary. You’re like every other patron, except your tickets are comped.

More About Seat Fillers and Free Tickets

Frequently Asked Questions About OTL Seat Fillers

What's Better Than Cheap Tickets?

Seat Fillers Receive Free Tickets for Guests, Too!

Guess what?

Unlike at awards shows, OTL or local seat fillers don’t have to go it alone. Believe it or not, the low membership dues also cover guests. You can register either a two-seat or four-seat membership and share your free ticket privileges with family or friends (as long as you’re attending, too!).

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Free Tickets for Seat Fillers in a Nutshell

I went through how seat fillers receive free tickets, what kind of tickets, how many, and how much. And, once again, free tickets are free tickets.

But here’s a little recap of the process:

  • Register an OTL Seat Fillers membership (ranges between 4.00 and 15.00 per month depending on where you live and whether you want a two or four-seat plan).
  • Check your member area for any current opportunities. If there aren’t any in your city, that could change at any time (part of the fun of being a seat filler is the element of surprise).
  • If you see a show you’re interested in attending, make an online reservation for you and your guest(s).
  • You’ll receive an email confirmation with the ticket pick-up time and location.
  • Show up at the venue prior to showtime and head to the box office or other designated location.
  • Flash your ID.
  • Receive your complimentary admission and seat assignments (your party is seated together).
  • Enjoy the show!
  • Rinse and repeat.