Ticketing Issues

There are other threads where these are being discussed but are slightly off topic to what the threads were originally supposed to be about - and might be useful to have this in one place anyway.

I think there are a number of different things that the Leicester ticket distribution (and other games) has highlighted - some bad but some good too. And rather than just whinge about it, it would be good if we had some constructive recommendations FROM THE FANS to put to the club for any future games where distribution may present problems (if none of the alleged club moles or the SLO are still reading UTS then maybe via one of the still existing supporters groups?)

My starter for 10 (as an ST holder myself) to try and get a consensus on possible recommendations:

  1. Too many tickets given to the away team that would have been snapped up by Walsall fans.

My suggestion would be to give a first allocation for the away end only (assuming that this meets whatever allocation rules apply to the particular game) and keep the blocks of family stand (Experienced Energy Solutions Stand) towards that end of the ground in reserve initially. If it looks like we will need more tickets for home fans then they go to us. If we don’t look like taking them only then make them available to the away team (if required).

Obviously segregation issues might reduce the amount available to either club if a stand is mixed - in which case ensure that that it is positioned in a way that accommodates as may of our own fans as possible at the expense of the away fans not the other away round.

If we are not expecting enough away fans to fill their end, put them in blocks on either side stand and make that end available to homes fans.

DO NOT move ST holders in the family stand elsewhere to accommodate away fans for any game (excepting pre-season friendlies).

  1. Priority Order

To ensure an equitable distribution, there needs to be some staggering of when different categories of supporters are able to purchase a ticket.

ST holders get first crack. Thought then needs to be given to the definition and order of subsequent categories - home booking history this season (simple yes/no, or graded by the number of games attended?), away booking history (ditto), past booking history, previous ST holder, etc etc. Something that gives regulars an advantage over ocassionals - and them over first timers whilst not treating the latter as pariahs.

  1. Priority Windows

ST holders should have their usual seats reserved for a long enough window and, to save against contention with non-STs also trying to purchase, an exclusive period when only they may make a purchase (shorter than the reservation window). Should that be 1 or 2 working day exclusivity and a full week reservation?

How long do we give the other categories before opening up to the next?

BTW Obviously higher priority categories can still apply later on, just that they are then competing with other categories too.

  1. Tickets per person

Limited to 1 per person? 1+1? 1+2? 1+more?

Different limits depending on category?

Different limits depending on time? (e.g. 1 per person for first 3 days, 1+1 for next 3 days, unlimited after that)

Limit sales to only the person making the booking or allow them to purchase for others with their own valid priority entitlement (proof required)? If for others too, does each still have the same + as above or only the booker?

  1. Sales Mechanisms

Not everyone has access to the Internet to make use of eTicketing, but then work/location may make visiting the ticket in person during working hours viable, and ditto being able to phone during office hours.

There have been reports of issues with ST holders finding their usual seat reservations on eTicketing (they are shown under there account details but not on the seating plan). Needs investigating whether the provider can make this more user friendly.

The processing fee per ticket of £1.25 on eTickets puts lost of people off using it. Most other clubs do not make a charge (or pass it on explicitly to fans) - although some that don;'t do charge for phone/in-person bookings. Can this be reviewed?

At least 1 late night (within the ST reservation window - although doesn’t have to be in the ST-only period) to allow more people to get to the ground or telephone.

When a rush is expected, more (trained) club staff diverted from less urgent work to man the ticket office windows and telephones (can more be added to the huntgroup?)

The telephone queue needs to be enlarged (lots of people could not get through at all despite calling many times) and made more friendly by telling you where you are in the queue and likely wait time. Alternatively, set up an arrangement for those that can’t hang on the line to leave a contact number and they be phoned back when a member of the ticket office staff is available.

  1. Reserved seats being sold to others

Need review of how this has happened and steps taken to prevent it happening again.

At the very least, if someone with a reserved seat attempts to redeem it within the reservation window to find it has already been sold then they are accommodated by the club and not left ticketless.

If the error breaks up the seating of a family group then attempts should be made to relocate the person sold the seat in error and the family kept together BEFORE any other resolution.

  1. Retained allocation

A number of (unreserved) seats should be held back to deal with issues such as reserved seats being sold to someone else or whatever. These should remain off sale until the club moves to the general sale/last window.

  1. Sell out returns waiting list

If we sell out of tickets before we get to the general sale window, then any returns (unclaimed ST reservations, unused retained allocation, etc) then an ordered waiting list should be made of those who have attempted to make a purchase within their priority window but missed out. They should NOT be put on sale on first come first served until the waiting list has been exhausted first.

  1. Ticket Office Staff

Only got praise for them myself - can’t have been easy for them over the last week and they are only applying the rules that others in the club have put in place.

10 . Anything else anyone can think of

Just my thoughts - add your own and see if we can get a consensus on how the club can improve for next time (round 5? :pray:)

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My major gripe is the £1.25 fee for doing all the work myself online. Should be the other way round ie no fee online but a small fee if booking by phone. The other thing that needs re-evaluating is the in advance/on-the-day price differential - never sure if it was an incentive to book early or a penalty for leaving it late. Either way it’s an anachronism in this age of online booking and a complication that we could all (and that includes the wonderful Ticket Office staff) do without.

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I don’t know if it’s the same Ticket Office Manager as it was circa 2015/16 but one match day I found the the lady serving me to be that rude I walked out the queue got in my car and went home didn’t attend. Turns out it was the ticket office manager herself !

Liz Champion is the current ticket office manager - taking over a year or so ago from Laura Greenhouse after she went off on maternity leave (thought she was back now but can’t find her listed anywhere on the OS - is she still with the club?)

Not sure how far back Laura went so can’t say if she was the one you had an issue with back in 2015/16. but have always found both of them to be very pleasant and extremely helpful to both myself and my dad - often going above and beyond for us.

Thank god it’s only 1 or 2 games a decade.

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Saw Laura not too long ago, she was working along side fans with disabilities not long back, not sure if she still is.

That’s ticketmaster cut the £1.25

Have always been brilliant with me also. Very friendly and always helpful

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I see what you’re saying but I look at the charge as a way of avoiding a drive to the ground and queuing or hanging on the phone for hours. Went online yesterday morning and tickets booked in a couple of minutes. £1.25 bargain

I think the club has been overwhelmed by the demand for this one. I’m flabbergasted that Leicester are such a draw.

No doubt lessons will be learned (hopefully for the fifth round tie!!) but the elasticity of demand is unreal. From the Carlisle game in the same competition we possibly have a fivefold increase in demand for Leicester City. Whilst barely able to name more than three of their players, I guess Premier League celebrity carries more weight than I’d anticipated.

In the future I think a cap on numbers of tickets until general sale will be the way it goes. But even that has flaws. Mum takes hubby and three kids to around a dozen games per season - always sorts the tickets in her name. If capped at two per person then some of her party miss out.

The club will have learned and we move on. I agree that we should have just given Leicester the “end” whilst we ascertained demand. Would have meant around an extra thousand for our fans which by the looks of it would have been snapped up in hours.

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Giving Leicester extra tickets hasn’t helped the matter.

Not sure why we chose to look after them rather than our own fans.

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There’s a huge whiff of ‘the old administration’ about the way this has been organised. While broadly things are improving, there’s still work to be done. Makes absolutely no sense to let people have as many as they wanted so soon in the process… could have still filled up with the hangers on in the general sale time, and had 800+ more home fans in there to boot.

I just hope the parties who had been running the matchday show in the pre-Trivela/Pomlett years don’t have too much influence this time because we’ll run out of food the night before and there’ll be a queue to Matalan by kick off

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Thanks for taking the time to put this together, think it’s a good idea. Club have likely been caught a bit on the hop with this one and have been a bit overwhelmed with demand. Although it does wiff of the approach of the old gaurd, which hopefully Trivella are well on their way to eradicating. I’m sure the owners and club will learn from this experience

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It’s such a big game because the last 7 seasons have been so soul gougingly dismal. I’m sorry for the few hundred full on fans who won’t be there because "they’re my second team " or Leicester tossers will be there instead. Wtf didn’t they restrict to two tickets the booking history timeliness? Dumb

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I’m surprised that you’re flabbergasted. Leicester won the Prem seven years ago and the F A Cup two years ago. And Vardy has to be one of the biggest English football personalities of the past decade doesn’t he, along with Kane, Rooney, Sterling perhaps and of course his own wife.
And it’s the fourth round of the F A Cup, and only the sixth time this century we’ve played a Premier league team at home - West Ham twice, Fulham, Bolton and Chelsea, unless I’ve forgotten anyone which I might have done because it’s all bit recent for me.

But, I echo your hope that lessons will be learnt, maybe they will with new people in charge, and that they will do things slightly better for the fifth round and also the quarter final at Spurs.

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There does - I’m another one of the people who, despite being a regular, ended up arguing with Roy Whalley when I couldn’t get a ticked for a big cup match. However I think there’s merit in giving out vouchers at home games in the run up like we used to do. The ‘real’ fans are then guaranteed a ticket and further income is generated by the larger crowds.

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Maybe in the this case (or future cup runs?) some additional order of priority could go to those attending games in the previous rounds?

For example Season Ticket holders are obviously allowed their 1 seat , then a Wycombe ticket entitles you to a further +1, a Carlisle ticket another + 1 etc?

The club could also use this as an incentive to maybe get a few more in for those less attractive, earlier round games.

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