Like many Britons, I await news of my application for tickets to attend next year’s Olympics in London. Every morning for the past week has seen a ritual involving me wake-up and check my online banking before even attempting the process of going to work. I have, so far, been disappointed to see the lack of deductions in my account though from checking out the Twittersphere, I’m not alone.
A lot has been made of the ticket situation, right from the process adopted through to the flexibility of payment. While the arguments for and against what was eventually adopted are fair, LOCOG were left in a difficult bind to adopt a perfect system that would work for them and the great British public. So, millions have chanced their arm and set aside hundreds (if not thousands) of pounds in the hope of being in Stratford next summer.
The news broken last weekend of foreign ticket exchanges offering access to the 2012 games on a first-come, first served basis has caused a storm and understandably so. The German website , Dertour.de, are offering tickets at face-value for a number of events in the style of a perfectly under-subscribed event – the site even has English language capabilities to add salt to the wound. Stories have emanated that upon the Sunday Times breaking the story, UK buyers were able to snap-up tickets for 100m final for less than €60. While this and other stories may be no more than tittle-tattle there is now a huge sense of expectation following the mass mail-out tonight from London 2012 confirming the process of payment collection and the ‘Second chance’ sale to come for those unsuccessful.
What tonight’s e-mail coupled with the current state of play on Dertour suggests is that there are going to be plenty of events under-subscribed; in addition to which, there is probably a clear insight into which tickets beyond the fantasy three (that being the 100m final, and Opening and Closing ceremonies) people are actually going to have a chance of landing on the first bite of the cherry.
When one marries the latest intelligence from the aforementioned sources so far, it seems clear that if you’ve applied for the following events your chances of getting those tickets look reasonable-to-good:
- Beach Volleyball,
These were all cited on the mail-out to ticket subscribers tonight – compare these with what’s available on Dertour and they read as follows:
Basketball – 62 sessions left to buy tickets for
Beach Volleyball - 34
Boxing - 113
Handball - 110
Hockey - 82
Taekwondo - 46
Volleyball - 144
Weightlifting - 83
Wrestling – 60
In fact, looking at Dertour it seems that Table Tennis (96), Hockey (82), Badminton (77) and Archery (51) are also faced with sessions to fill.
I would be the first to acknowledge that this is by no means scientific, but that fact that Detour’s allocations have changed constantly since Sunday suggests that punters are using it. If nothing else, it provides a useful soundboard to understand the likely law of averages as to what one may get.
I learnt of the Dertour story late on Sunday – by then no athletics, track cycling or swimming tickets were available. I’m led to believe they were, early doors.
Using what I’ve seen, it would suggest that I’m most likely to get the football, beach volleyball and basketball tickets I have applied for. All of my being is praying I get Opening Ceremony tickets, others I know I are hoping for finals in the Velodrome or Olympic Stadium.
The next few days will deliver much in the way of joy and heartache, and lay the first real marker of how the nation will take to the London Olympics. With so much drama taking place now, a year will be needed to get the millions of successful applicants over the trauma and ready for the greatest show on Earth.
ADDENDUM. 26/5 @ 1530
At time of writing it now seems the processing juggernught is in full swing, activating a very anxious period for millions of applicants.
In preparing for the worst (and based on the intelligence from the BBC’s James Pearce, if payments aren’t coming through imminently applicants should expect to be unsuccessful) it’s worth bearing in mind the following:
- There are many approved ticket resellers around the world; perhaps you have friends and family who could access them? The official list can be found here (thanks to Paul Lewis for flagging this).
- Thomas Cook, as official provider to the London games are offering many hotel and ticket packages - this may be the best chance for many to snaffle tickets for events like Athletics and while the cost will be inflated because of the hotel room included, this is arguably a safer option than chancing your arm with a foreign outlet.
Many of us are now in the same boat at present - I can only wish you all the best of luck with your applications. If anyone has any spares for the Opening Ceremony, do give me a shout!!
ADDENDUM. 27/5 @ 1340
In the event you have landed here via the Guardian Olympic blog, may I also recommend the follow up pieces to this one - I have subsequently written about my own experiences of being awarded tickets here, and provided some insight into intelligence gathered from various outlets on the final run-down ahead of the 31/5 milestone.