Maybe you bought tickets to finally see Taylor Swift live. (Nice!) But, unfortunately the concert falls on the same night as your best friend’s wedding and now you have to sell them. Or maybe you thought buying and reselling tickets would make for a great side hustle.

Either way, selling concert tickets is something we’ll all probably do at least once. But if you make money on ticket resales, you might be asking yourself whether you’re required to pay taxes on that windfall.

We’ll walk you through when you have to pay taxes on selling concert tickets—whether you’re just getting rid of a pair that you bought for yourself or you’ve taken up reselling tickets as a side gig. And, when it’s time to file your taxes – consider getting a tax expert to review before you file so you can get the most out of our tax return.

Key Takeaways
  1. Whether you owe taxes on the sale of concert tickets depends on if you bought them for personal use or to sell as a side hustle.
  2. With personal-use sales, you have to pay taxes only if the ticket sale is more than $1,000.
  3. With side-hustle sales, you have to pay taxes on all income you earn from ticket resales minus expenses.

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Can I sell concert tickets in Canada?

Yes, it’s legal to sell concert tickets in Canada. You can even sell them for more than their face value in most parts of Canada, something that’s often referred to as “ticket scalping.”  

Ticket scalping is allowed in all Canadian provinces outside of Quebec—so long as you document the sale and pay taxes on the income you derive from it. Based in Quebec? You can still sell your tickets. But Quebec has a law that prohibits ticket resale when the tickets are sold for a price that’s above their face value.

You can sell concert tickets in a variety of ways—from listing them on online classified sites like Craigslist and Kijiji to selling them to a friend. There’s also Ticketmaster’s Verified Resale Tickets program that allows fans to sell tickets to each other that have been verified as authentic by Ticketmaster. This service tracks your income from ticket sales to make tax reporting easier. It also provides you with information about all your ticket sales under your program dashboard at the end of the year.

Do I have to pay taxes when selling concert tickets?

In Canada, you need to pay taxes on ticket resales in some situations but not in others. From a tax filing perspective, it mainly depends on why you’re selling the tickets.

  • When you’re selling concert tickets you bought for yourself, you have to pay taxes on the sale only if the sale meets certain criteria, which we outline below.
  • In the case of selling concert tickets as a business or side hustle, you always have to pay taxes on your gains.  

How do I go about selling concert tickets I bought for myself

When you sell tickets you originally purchased for yourself, you might not owe any tax. The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) considers that a sale of personal-use property. Whether you owe tax on selling concert tickets depends on the size of the gain you made on the sale.   

  • For tax purposes, the CRA considers what it calls the “adjusted cost base” (ACB) of any personal property you purchase under $1,000 to have an ACB of $1,000. Did your tickets cost $400? Great—your ACB is $1,000.
  • The next key thing to consider is how much you sold your tickets for (also known as the “proceeds of disposition“). If your proceeds are less than $1,000, the CRA will also consider your proceeds to be $1,000. That means if you sell your $400 tickets for $700, the CRA adjusts that sale price to $1,000.  
  • If both your ACB and proceeds are $1,000 or less, you are not considered by the CRA to have a capital gain or loss. That means you don’t have to report the sale on Schedule 3 when you file your income taxes.
  • If your ACB is $1,000 but your proceeds are more than $1,000, then you have a capital gain and you have to report that gain when you file your return and pay tax on it.
  • Did you get less than you paid for your tickets? There’s no need to report that on your Schedule 3. Less paperwork for you!

Examples of taxes on personal resale tickets

  • You buy Taylor Swift tickets for $500 and resell them for $2,000. The ACB of your resale tickets is $1,000 and the proceeds are $2,000. The capital gain you have to declare on your taxes is the difference between those two amounts—or the $1,000 gain you made ($2,000 – $1,000 = $1,000).
  • You buy Travis Scott tickets for $600 and resell them for $1,500. The ACB of your resale tickets is $1,000 and the proceeds are $1,500. The capital gain you have to declare on your taxes is the difference between those two amounts—or the $500 gain you made ($1,500 – $1,000 = $500).
  • You buy Metallica tickets for $500 and sell them for $999. The ACB of your resale tickets is $1,000 and the proceeds are $1,000 ($1,000 – $1,000 = $0). You don’t need to pay taxes or report your gain.

Taxes on selling concert tickets as a side hustle

Maybe you’re selling concert tickets as a side hustle because you’ve seen how much people can make by buying and reselling tickets for popular events. If that’s the case, then how you’re taxed is different than if you just purchased tickets for personal use and had to sell them because something came up.

For the purposes of this article, we’re going to assume you haven’t incorporated your business but buy and sell concert tickets under your own name.

  • All of the income from your ticket sales minus your expenses (like the cost of the tickets and any other reasonable business expenses) must be declared on Form T2125 on your taxes, which is where you report business or professional income and expenses.
  • If you sell more than $30,000 in tickets in calendar year or any 12 month period, you might also be required to register to collect sales tax on your sales. In that case, you’ll have to register for either a Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) number or a Goods and Services Tax (GST) and Provincial Sales Tax (PST) number. However, most people who make that much money on ticket resales don’t have to register for sales taxes because they sell through ticket resale marketplaces like Ticketmaster Verified Resale Tickets or StubHub, which charge sales taxes for you.  

What rate are concert ticket resale gains taxed at?

How much you’ll pay on your concert ticket resale gains will depend on whether they were tickets for personal use or part of a side hustle.

  • Personal use: The thing to note about capital gains is that you get a discount on how much you get taxed on them. Rather than include the full gain from your resale tickets in your annual taxable income, the CRA includes only 50% of that gain. For example, if you made $1,000 from selling those Taylor Swift tickets, the CRA will add only $500 to your taxable income for the year ($1,000 x 0.5 = $500).
  • Side hustle: Unlike selling concert tickets for personal use, all of your gains minus your expenses are added to your annual taxable income when you’re doing it as a side hustle. For example, if you made $10,000 from selling tickets in a year but spent $5,000 on buying the tickets and other expenses (such as advertising or paying employees to frantically buy tickets for you once they’re released), you would add $5,000 to your taxable income.

In both cases, whatever amount is added to your annual taxable income will be taxed at your marginal rate. What’s a marginal rate? It’s the rate of tax you pay on additional income.

For example, if you make more than $55,867 but less than $111,733, then in 2024 you’re in the 20.5% federal tax bracket. So long as your concert ticket resale income doesn’t put you in a higher tax bracket, you’ll pay 20.5% on that $500, which works out to $102.50 ($500 x 0.205 = $102.50).   

Pros and cons of selling concert tickets

Unsure if ticket resale is right for you? We’ve broken down the pros and cons to help you decide!





You don’t have to report your gains (or pay tax on them) unless you sell your tickets for more than $1,000.

You have to remember to report your ticket-sale income on Schedule 3 of your income tax return.


Only 50% of your capital gain from selling your tickets is added to your taxable income.

You’ll be taxed at your marginal rate—which is higher if you make more money.

Side hustle

Your total resale income (minus expenses) are counted as taxable income.

You have to fill out a T2125—which can be confusing if you’ve never done it before and you’re doing your taxes unassisted. Consider Assist & Review to ensure your taxes are done right with real experts at your side.


You can claim office expenses and reasonable business expenses against your income.

You may be required to register for GST and PST or HST if you meet the criteria—but only if you’re not selling tickets through a marketplace that’s charging sales tax.

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Get advice and answers as you go, with a final tax expert review before you file.