Along with its official postponement announcement on Friday, Ultra Music Festival stated that ticket purchasers receive an email on Monday “regarding next steps.” That email came at the very end of Monday, around midnight eastern standard time, and the message between the lines was an upsetting “no refunds.”
Ultra’s email started by stating they are “completely devastated” by Miami officials’ decision to reschedule the festival’s 22nd edition to March 26, 27 & 28, 2021.
After getting into some details about coronavirus spread concerns, Ultra stated, “ALL tickets purchased will of course remain valid and will be honored at either the 2021 or 2022 Ultra Miami event, at your option.” Ticket purchasers have 30 days to choose between the two events. The email said a “digital online Ultra experience as soon as possible” is in the works. No further details were provided about it.
“Even though the situation is completely beyond our control, we are fully engaged, pushing forward to go above and beyond for you,” Ultra’s email states. “In seeing that commitment through, we have worked around the clock to assemble an extraordinary added value package for you. “
It is followed by a “Benefits” section with six bullet points, none that come remotely close to a refund option. Here are the bullet points and a breakdown of each.
Ultra No Refunds “Benefits”
- Extra Ultra Hour: An Exclusive Main Stage Headline DJ performance at Ultra Miami 2021 for 2020 ticket purchasers, one hour before doors open to the public.
Translation: If 2020 ticket purchasers choose to attend Ultra 2021 (not 2022), they will get to see a presumably well-known DJ perform for an hour before regular attendees can enter the festival. Ultra typically starts at 2 p.m., so ticket purchases would likely have to get there by 1 p.m. That’s 13 straight hours at the festival for those who stay through the 2 a.m. end.
- One (1) Free Ticket to either an Ultra WorldwideTM or Resistance® event of your choice (excluding Miami), valid throughout 2021 for each 2020 ticket purchased. Subject to the terms and conditions in effect for that show. Limited quantity and subject to availability. First come first served. Non-transferable. Pre-registration required.
Translation: For each 2020 Miami ticket, the purchaser is offered a free ticket in 2021 to an UltraWorldwide or Resistance event. That sounds like it includes big festivals like Ultra Europe, but it is unclear because it is subject to “terms and conditions” for each show. The free shows are first come first served and an unknown limited quantity.
- A discount code for 50% off for up to $250 in merchandise on www.ultramerchandise.com. Discount code expires December 31, 2020. Code does not apply to taxes, shipping, handling and service charges.
Translation: Spend more money. A good deal for 2020 ticket purchasers who want more Ultra gear.
- There will be Ten (10) Ultra Golden Tickets where each admits you plus one guest Free entrance to any Ultra Worldwide events (including Miami) for life. Subject to the terms and conditions in effect for that show. Non-transferable. Pre-registration required.
Translation: Amazing if you are one of the lucky 10. Terms and conditions unknown.
- Exclusive access to a $99.95 private sale to upgrade to PREMIUM GA (PGA) for Ultra Miami. PREMIUM GA is a new ticket category at the festival which will be available for purchase for $599.95 during the 2021 event on-sale. This includes access to these exclusive PGA areas: PREMIUM Expedited entry, upgraded restroom facilities, PGA Lounge, chillout area and bar. Subject to the terms and conditions in effect for that show. Limited quantity and subject to availability. First come first served.
Translation: Spend more money. For about $100, get on a higher tier that includes faster entry into the event, better restrooms and a bar and section away from the regular GA crowd.
- Exclusive access to buy up to 2 additional GA tickets for $249.95 during the 2021 Ultra Miami private on-sale for each 2020 ticket purchased. Subject to the terms and conditions in effect for that show. Limited quantity and subject to availability. First come first served.
Translation: Spend more money. For each 2020 ticket bought, the purchaser can buy one or two more steeply discounted tickets for the 2021 festival. Useful to get more friends to come.
Ultra requires 2020 ticket purchasers to click through to confirm agreement with the terms.
Many ticket purchasers were understandably angry that Ultra is not offering a refund option. People’s schedules change, lives change, and a festival one to two years out can be hard to plan for. On the flip side, Ultranauts committed to going every year can indeed benefit if they play their cards right.