Rather than waiting for news stories about ticket prices to appear after season-ticket invoices are mailed, owner Ted Leonsis got ahead of the news this week by sending an e-mail to season-ticket holders himself. In that e-mail, he announced that most season-ticket prices will increase (by an average of 8 percent) next season, the fifth straight year that most prices will go up. (Although Leonsis said that prices for some of the seats will actually decrease).
You can see the full text at this site, but here are the key paragraphs:
In the upcoming days you will receive your season-ticket renewal material. Most of you will see a change, an average increase of about 8%. Some seat prices have changed more than others, while some have stayed the same and a few seating areas actually have decreased in price. I realize no one wants to pay more, but our season-ticket pricing has been moderate when compared with others around the league.
Without knowing every team’s 2012-13 individual ticket prices, we estimate that our average ticket price will be in the middle of the pack. More importantly to you, however, our season-ticket pricing will be in the lower half of the league. We will continue to offer the popular PowerPay, a 12-month, interest-free payment plan, as well as the Pay As We Play playoff program, which doesn’t require any up-front payment for games. We believe both of those payment programs have helped us to renew at slightly better than 98% last year. And we will continue to implement our season-ticket holder loyalty program, which has been so well received. Overall, we believe we offer a great overall experience with our organization and our players.
Team Marketing Report — an analyst outfit whose data some industry people doubt — said that this season, Caps tickets averaged $62.42, about $5 above the NHL average and the 12th highest figure in the NHL. TMR also said Caps ticket prices went up 12.3 percent this season, the third-highest increase in the league.
“As always, we welcome your feedback through your dedicated guest service representative or any of the other communications channels available to you,” Leonsis’s e-mail concluded. “I believe we have a strong track record of listening to your concerns and suggestions – significant or seemingly trivial – and acting when necessary and appropriate. You, along with our season-ticket advisory board, provide the necessary feedback for us to continue to improve how we serve you. We value our relationship – yes, financially, but also intellectually. Our entire front office staff understands the importance of connecting with you and appreciates our interactions with you.
“Thanks for being Capitals season-ticket holders and thank you for helping us build America’s Hockey Capital. We have come a long way together, and we have exciting times ahead.”
(As first published by the Wash Times, I suppose.)