I thought I'd start a topic to facilitate sharing of information learned during the ticket buying process so we can all help cross the bridge to ticket ownership. This is for everyone - those lucky enough to have been selected, who have ticket confirmation, to report their purchase process; those who did not receive tickets to report their experience; those who may have hit a bank issue or stalled out of the process, etc., to report in on what they experienced and observed; how their card behaved during the ticket transaction, what any pitfalls or danger zones, tips, etc. you have to share. This is an unofficial participant-initiated thread. Nothing I write below is official or is intended to be taken other than one burner to another. For official info I defer to the good folks at BM, especially the great Trilobyte of Infinite Patience. This is just my own experience in the ticket process, and hopefully yours added to it.
Here's mine to start - I requested and was successfully selected in the Pre-sale. Here's my observations.
-- I was concerned about using a prepaid card because it has to be tied with a name, never used one before, it was unfamiliar territory, so I avoided it, and used my one and only credit card.
-- First, I paid my card down to cover the cost, plus an extra couple hundred as it was not clear early enough on what extra charges would be.
-- Concerned about an impending expiration date on my current card, I called my card issuer and they rushed me a new card with a new expiration date on it to avoid the card expiring during the sale period, which because of the rules would have been irrevocably fatal to the purchase. (Remember: you get one chance, no forgiveness, and without surgical precision, your next burn may be in 2013 unless you luck out in the final drawing).
-- If you have cards that go to different billing addresses (a home card, a business card, an old address, etc.) don't space that on the form - the purchase may fail. Match the billing address on your statement to what you put on the form.
-- I got to the form online. I shut my door. No distractions. Calm. Slow. Monastic-level concentration and focus. Pretended: I'm a computer, checking for exact letters and spaces, mono-minded, binary, unforgiving. Used a current card statement to carefully enter in the precisely matching information on the card. Double checked each address line one by one.
-- Refocus before you submit. SUBMIT button is UNFORGIVING. There is no "back" there is no "please review your order before submitting," at least as I recall. So read and re-read that form before sending. If you're computer savvy take a screen shot of it so you can use it later to calm yourself when doubt sets in 1 minute after you submit. Oh, you'll get a confirmation but if your address is wrong or you misspelled your street...see you in 2013, I think- unknown whether you'll be notified or kept in the dark until you learn in March that you had wrong or expired card info to begin with.
-- Called my bank back. Told them estimated amount and when selection opens and closes. They noted my account.
-- When I got notified by email that I was selected, I went into my credit card account online and found the billing for the sale. It says this: BURNING MAN SAN FRANCISCO. MERCHANT CATEGORY CODE 7922. There was some other merchant-identifying info as well. I looked up 7922 on the Internet and that code is for ticket purchasing agencies. So, it would appear to me that you could check with your card issuer to ensure that 7922 won't trigger a stop to the sale. No guidance from BM ticket company on this that I know of so hopefully this helps someone.
-- Finally, at the exact same moment the transaction posted, a second transaction posted from same BURNING MAN, same category, for a small amount. Time-stamped same minute, so hard to say which took place first; maybe the low dollar amount was a test of some kind. Or a new tax from somewhere. Not sure what this was, but there it is.
To help our brethren burners cross the river to ticket ownership, please list any experiences you have had with ticketing, rejected on technicalities, etc. so that we can all learn from one another. Work together, my friends!!!
I will see you all at the Burn!!