The 2012 Olympics schedule provides a tantalising peek into the raft of events set to grace our country. Yet with tickets for some premium events priced at a wallet-busting £725, can the average family really afford to go?
There are a fair few pessimists out there when it comes to the potential success of London 2012, but I’m not one of them.
I can’t wait and Tuesday March 15th, the opening day applications for tickets can be made, is firmly in my calendar – in bold and underlined, twice!
Will we even get any tickets?
I’ve already studied the games schedule, highlighting my favourite events. After doing some quick sums (based on the cheapest seats for gold medal events, £50 for the athletics, swimming, cycling and diving finals) I’m already at £200 – and that’s just for one person.
Apply for top-price tickets and the total for these could reach just shy of £2k. But that’s only if I get all my requested tickets – with 13,000 VIP tickets reportedly reserved for politicians, getting to the games at all could be a miracle.
Tickets for £20
It’s only fair to say that tickets do start at £20 and that special-priced tickets will be available at more than 200 sessions. ‘Pay your age’ seats will be offered to young people who are aged 16 or younger and Seniors aged 60 and over will pay £16 at selected sessions.
But put your name down for later rounds or medal-winning sessions, and not only do most of the special prices disappear, the price of tickets increase significantly.
Fair enough, younger children may not understand the occasion fully, but what about the rest of us, or those with slightly older children? Is there anything wrong with wanting to see the glory games, the big finals, and hopefully some Brits winning golds?
Should some of us be restricted to watching the opening rounds – or even the telly – simply because of cost?
Hockey for the price of a holiday?
And it’s bothering me that those who support the grass roots of a sport will be priced out of medal-winning matches, while those (arguably) less enamoured with the sport will watch from prime viewing seats.
Take hockey. The cost of a family going to watch the hockey final is £180 for a family of four for the cheapest tickets and £380 for the second-highest priced seats.
Yes it’s the Olympics, yes it’s the final. But the total cost bares no relevance to watching high-class hockey in this country, which is often free. Even if you love the game of Hockey, £380 could take your family away for a break.
Will I still apply for my tickets? Yes. Do I really, really hope I get them? Yes. Do I think the pricing and ticket allocation is fair? I’m not so sure.