How to Get March Madness Tickets

Oct 15, 2018


Alex Gormley

Save on March Madness tickets! Use code MADNESS20 at checkout for $20 off your SeatGeek purchase of $100 or more.

Although we’re still a month away from the start of college basketball, it’s never too early to start thinking about your for March Madness plans.

The NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball tournament is one of the most exciting events in all of sports, so it’s wise for basketball fans to secure their seats to the games far in advance. But how? Check out our guide on how to score March Madness 2019 tickets.

A Quick Word About March Madness Ticket Types

Before we dive into the different ways to get your hands on tickets, it’s important to quickly breakdown how March Madness tickets are offered to the public. There are two different types of ticket offerings: full strip tickets and session tickets. Each session ticket includes tickets to two separate games at the same venue, while each full strip of tickets includes tickets to the three sessions at a tournament location.

For a full explanation of how these types of tickets work, check out our ticket type breakdown from earlier this year.


Now that we’ve gotten the explanation of the different ticket types out of the way, we can get right into the first method for securing tickets, which is through the NCAA’s official website. As it currently stands, the NCAA’s website is only offering tickets that are bundled together with a hospitality experience, which drives the price up significantly. These ticket packages include access to the “Official NCAA Experience” which grants fans access to a private lounge that includes food and drink. If you’re interested in purchasing tickets without also opting into the “NCAA Experience,” NCAA.com allows you to sign up to be notified of future ticket offerings.

Individual Stadium Box Offices

In addition to the NCAA’s official website, fans can also purchase tickets directly from the venues where the games are being held. For example, the XL Center in Hartford, CT, is set to host games on March 21 and 23, and you’ll be able to purchase tickets directly from them online, or via phone in November.

If you’re looking to purchase tickets to the closest location geographically to you, here’s a list of all the venues for this year’s tournament.

The Secondary Market

One of the most convenient (and often economical) ways to buy tickets to just about any sporting event is through secondary ticket sellers online. Some of the more popular ticket brokers include SeatGeek, StubHub and Vivid Seats. Online ticket sites offer customers with a plethora of different seating options in all price ranges, which makes finding your desired seat a cinch.

SeatGeek, in particular, offers the largest inventory of tickets on the Internet, which gives fans unparalleled access to the best selection of seats for any college basketball game–whether it’s a regular season game or a must-win tournament tilt. In addition to their fantastic ticket inventory, SeatGeek also has its own Deal Score system which makes finding the best bargain on your desired seat seem effortless. Read more about SeatGeek and their ticket policies here.

March Madness Tickets on SeatGeek

Save on March Madness tickets! Use code MADNESS20 at checkout for $20 off your SeatGeek purchase of $100 or more. Click here to browse all March Madness tickets, or view select games below.

Ticket Draws Via Schools Participating in the Tournament (College Students Only)

If you’re a college student that attends a school that ends up making the tournament, you may be able to purchase tickets through your school. However, not all schools offer tickets so your mileage may vary.

Usually when tickets are offered through the school, students can enter a lottery where schools draw names randomly to determine who is able to buy tickets. This method is an unbiased way to determine who gets tickets but it’s far from a guaranteed way to get seats if you’re a college student. Should you strike out, there’s plenty of other methods also at your disposal.

Private Ticket Sales

One final option for ticket purchases is buying them from a private seller, which can be done a few different ways. Sometimes people who can’t attend the event sell their tickets on websites like eBay and Craigslist, or through Facebook Marketplace. It’s certainly possible that you could a good deal through one of these methods.

(Cropped image courtesy of Eric Wong via Flickr. | CC BY-ND 2.0)