Will call

Will call

Will call is an American term for a box office where patrons of entertainment venues go to pick up already-bought tickets for an event, such as a play or concert, either just before the event, or in advance. With the onset of the Internet and e-commerce sites, which allow customers to buy tickets online, the popularity of this service has increased.

Box office rules and hours vary. Some may not open until an hour before event time, while others may be open during regular business hours every day. Some buildings advise patrons to arrive very early to pick up tickets to avoid long lines.

In the wholesale and retail trade industry, a will call item is merchandise that is to be picked up at the seller's place of business. A will call memo is given to wholesale delivery drivers as an instruction to pick up items at the address stated on the memo. In the last twenty years or so, the term "pick up" is replacing the older term "will call".

Will call also refers to customers picking up merchandise in person for businesses that normally ship their products. This is sometimes done by the customer to save on shipping charges and is often frowned upon by companies that are not designed for in-person sales. As a result, some companies ban the practice of will call pick ups and others implement a will call charge for in-person pick ups.


In the days before the telephone, the phrase "I will call on you" was commonly used to mean that someone will visit you, or speak to you. The phrase has since largely fallen into disuse, with the word "call" being much more commonly associated with the telephone than speaking to someone in person. The term "will call", however, has stuck, and means that the customer "will call on" the company to pick up the tickets or merchandise, as opposed to having the items delivered to them.

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