Although there’s a rapidly growing shift towards print at home and e-ticket options, having at least one physical printer is still an integral part of the box office for most organisations.
A key element to consider when printing tickets is the physical ticket stock you use. In this article we’ll provide a brief introduction to ticket stock, explore some of the things you need to think about when ordering, as well as profile some of the suppliers you can order from.
Ticket printers and thermal stock
Most – if not all – current models of ticket printers will use thermal printing. This is a specific digital process which produces printed images and text by selectively heating coated thermal paper as it passes through the print head. A thermal printer needs specific paper stock that’s specially produced to react to heat in order to work – standard paper stock will not work in a thermal ticket printer.
The benefit of thermal printing is that it allows you to print large amounts of stock efficiently, without the need for regularly replenishing inks as you would with more conventional printers.
Ticket stock usually comes in a roll or ‘fanfold’ (folded in a concertina-like bundle) and different printer models will require ticket stock that complies with its specifications for dimensions and weight (often referred to as GSM). Most printers usually provide a degree of flexibility in terms of the size and GSM of the ticket stock and the printer manuals should provide the details of what will be compatible with your chosen model. For more information regarding technical specifications, we’d recommend referring to the relevant manufacturer’s website.
Things to think about
When purchasing ticket stock, the key considerations to make beforehand are:
- What size and GSM stock do you require? As outlined above, most printer models will be somewhat flexible about this, but the manufacturers/suppliers should be able to provide further advice.
- What information/designs do you intend to print on your ticket stock? Will you need to print on both sides of the paper (e.g. when printing advertisements on the reverse)?
- Will you need any other special features (such as holograms) and where will these be placed? Depending on these factors, you’ll also have to take this into consideration when creating your ticket design layout in the Ticket Design Tool
- What quantities will you be batch printing in?
Ticket Stock Suppliers
Both BOCA and Stimare (who we usually recommend for ticket printing; please refer to Ticket Printers – An Introduction) also provide ticket stock; Stimare can also point you in the direction of some of their recommended partners.
We’ve listed below some other reliable companies we recommend re-ordering ticket stock from. All of these companies should be able to answer your queries, or discuss any special requirements you may have. There are, of course, plenty more providers out there but hopefully these will help get you started with your search:
Tungate Group are well established and provide a range of ticket stock options compatible with most known brands of ticket printers, as well a range of other bespoke custom print services.
Kalamazoo Direct specialise in providing design and print services for various secure document types, with an emphasis on security features and security accreditation.
Thermal Tickets focus solely on providing ticketing stock and other print solutions for venues and events, working closely with clients to meet their thermal printing needs.
Premier Roll South
Premier Roll South work with a wide spectrum of established clients to provide design and printing services with a large selection of options available.
Weldon, Williams and Lick
Weldon, Williams and Lick provide a range of custom ticketing options, as well as providing samples on request.
For any hardware-specific troubleshooting, we recommend the following articles to help get you started:
For any troubleshooting queries that go beyond what is offered in these articles, the Spektrix Support Team will be glad to assist and signpost you to the relevant points of contact to help resolve any issues you’re experiencing.