ID cards could replace concert tickets

  • 2006-05-10
  • By Kairi Kurm
TALLINN - Estonian software companies Cooperative and Developers Team have created a unique system that enables one to use an ID card as a concert ticket, as well as pay for refreshments at the concert. If the system takes off, Estonian concert-goers will be able to leave their wallets at home. "The idea of the idpilet.ee project is simple: We save the time and costs of guests and organizers of the events," said Gunnar Peipman, managing director at Developers Team.

Holders of an ID card can purchase their tickets through the Web site idpilet.ee. As they receive a virtual ticket, they do not have to bother with a paper ticket. The ticket control will check their ID cards with the help of special computer software and will print out a hand band, if necessary, for people to move in and out of the concert area. If a computer fails to read ID cards, organizers an resort to a list of ticket holders' names from the Web site. People who decide to resell their tickets can easily change the ownership through the Web site. Before a payment can be made, money has to be transferred to the card-holder's ID card credit account via an online bank.

The Paradise Beach festival is the first event to which people were invited to buy virtual tickets. The sale of tickets surpassed organizers' expectations. Peipman said that it was difficult to predict the use of virtual tickets of the festival, but the event itself should bring together up to 40,000 guests per day. He is also not quite sure about the use of ID cards as a payment card throughout the whole concert area. "We hope to complete the solution by the time the Paradise Beach festival starts in July. Currently we are quite in time with our schedule. There are areas where ID cards can be used as payment cards, but due to the tight schedule we will not be able to cover the whole area with this solution," said Peipman. The first event where virtual tickets can actually be used is a dance party at the end of May. Virtual tickets to this event are one-third cheaper than tickets normally sold by Piletilevi and Statoil.

Jaanus Beilmann, CEO of Telspec Trade, a company that holds the Piletilevi brand, said that he was not aware of the pros and cons of the new ticket sales system, but he was also not terrified by competition. "We know from our experiences that it is a time consuming process to create a ticket sales system that services a huge amount of events daily," said Beilmann. He is convinced that as the use of ID cards expands they could use it in their system in the future. Both Piletilevi and idpilet.ee get their revenues as a commission from ticket sales.

Peipman sees additional opportunities for the new system. Besides using it as a means of identification and a payment system it could also be used in trade as a customer card for discounts and people will not have to carry along wallets packed with various cards any longer. If tests are successful, their plan is to work closely with manufacturers of cash register systems so that ID cards could be used as widely as bankcards are used today.
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