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American Express Preferred Seating vs. presale

Find show tickets before they’re available to the general public.

Having good seats at a show can make all the difference. With an Amex card, you can access presales and member onsales for select shows. And with an eligible card, you can find premium seats reserved for Amex members.

What is American Express Preferred Seating and what is presale?

These programs offer access to tickets the general public doesn’t get. Each requires you to buy tickets with an eligible Amex card.

What is American Express Preferred Seating?

This is a program where Amex reserves premium seats at certain shows for select members. It’s different from American Express Seating or Member Onsales, where some seats are open to all Amex cardholders.

American Express Preferred Seating vs. presale

What is American Express presale?

All Amex cardholders can buy tickets for select shows before the general public during an American Express presale,
According to Ticketmaster — Amex’s ticketing partner — Preferred Seating presales are available to Amex members with select cards.

American Express Preferred Seating vs. presale: Is there a difference?

With Amex presales we’ve researched, there was no distinction between normal seating and Preferred Seating. However, this might not be the case with every show, and policies can vary based on the event and promoter.

Amex Preferred Seating vs. Amex Seating and Member Onsale

Typically, Preferred Seating offers closer seats to the stage. For example:

  • It can seat you to closer sections (see the images below).
  • It can seat you within a section, it might take you to the front rows while Amex Seating or Member Onsale seats you would put you farther back.
American Express Card Member Onsale

American Express Preferred Seating vs. presale

American Express Preferred Seating

American Express Preferred Seating vs. presale

Amex Member sales vs. general onsales

Most of the time, you won’t find better seats in an Amex Member Presale than you would with a general onsale. But you will have the opportunity to buy tickets before they’re available to the general public.

Amex Member Onsales often won’t get you access to better seats than you can buy through a general onsale. For some shows, however, you can score Member Onsale seats that are better than the general public will find.

American Express Preferred Seating vs. presale

In some cases, Member Onsales will give you access to better seats.

Pro tip: Offer codes

You don’t need an offer code for Amex Presales or Member Onsales. But you will need one to access Preferred Seating.

What is the Amex Preferred Seating code?

The Amex Preferred Seating offer code is the 10-digit customer support number on the back of your credit card, without hyphens. Typically, inputting 8005253355 will give you access to Preferred Seating tickets.

How to get American Express Preferred Seating

  1. Visit the dedicated Ticketmaster/American Express ticket page.
  2. Click American Express seating in the left-hand navigation bar.

American Express Preferred Seating vs. presale

  1. Click Find tickets next to your chosen event.
  2. Enter your Amex Offer Code in the ticket search bar. If there’s Preferred Seating available, it’ll show up on the right-hand ticket column.
    American Express Preferred Seating vs. presale
  3. Add your tickets to your cart, then check out. Use your qualifying Amex card to pay for your tickets.

How to use Pay with Points for your Ticketmaster purchase

To use Pay with Points, buy your tickets on Ticketmaster with your eligible Amex card. Then, call 800-297-3276 and ask to apply your rewards to your Ticketmaster charge.

Which credit cards offer an American Express preferred seating code?

Only select Amex cards qualify you for Preferred Seating. According to Ticketmaster, there are very slight differences between the lists of cards that qualify you for Preferred Seating presales and onsales.

Any Amex credit card qualifies you for Amex Presales and Member Onsales.

Compare American Express credit cards for Preferred Seating

1 - 2 of 9
Name Product Filter values Rewards Purchase APR Annual fee
American Express® Gold Card
Up to 4x points
See Pay Over Time APR

Rose Gold is here to stay. Card Members can choose between a Gold or Rose Gold Card.

Earn up to 4x points on select purchases and enjoy a bevy of travel perks with this upper-mid tier travel card. Terms apply, see rates & fees
The Platinum Card® from American Express
The Platinum Card® from American Express
Up to 5x points
See Pay Over Time APR
80,000 points after spending $8,000 in your first 6 months. Terms apply, see rates & fees

Ticketmaster deals

To save more money on your next ticket purchase — whether you’re headed to a ball game, a concert, a theater or another live event — browse discounts and deals from Ticketmaster.

Bottom line

While there usually isn’t a difference between tickets in an Amex presale, Preferred Seating can often get you closer to the action than standard Amex Seating would.

Learn more about Amex Entertainment or compare American Express credit cards that let you access Amex ticket sales. For Preferred Seating, consider a premium Amex card.

Frequently asked questions

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Kevin Chen is a personal finance expert and a former writer at Finder. His expertise has been featured in CNN, U.S. News and World Report, Lifehacker and, among other top media. See full bio

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