London 2012: more than 1m Olympic tickets could be resold

Written By MR on Saturday, January 7, 2012 | Saturday, January 07, 2012

As official resale scheme opens, one website estimates that 1m of the 6.6m tickets could be up for grabs

A total of 6.6m tickets are available for the 2012 Games, with a final batch of 1.2m going on sale in April

London 2012 organisers have warned that a flood of tickets is unlikely when the official resale scheme opens on Friday.

A ticket resale website, Viagogo, has estimated that 1m of the 6.6m tickets available to the public could be recycled through the resale platform operated by organisers, but others believe the numbers will be far lower.

Anyone who has bought a ticket for the Games that they no longer want or can no longer use will be able to submit them for resale through the website of the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (Locog).

If a buyer can be found, the ticketholder will be reimbursed for the face value of the ticket.

But given the huge demand for tickets, with 22m applications for 3m tickets in the opening round and only football tickets still available until the final batch of 1.2m ticket sales in April, Locog expects most people who can't use their tickets to pass them to friends or family instead.

There had been concerns expressed in the House of Lords that the terms and conditions attached to the sale of tickets, which say that the ticketholder must be present, would have restricted the ability to pass them on.

But Locog's chief executive, Paul Deighton, has insisted that ticketholders are free to pass on their tickets even if they can't attend personally and that the measure is merely a defence against touting.

Viagogo UK's managing director, Edward Parkinson, said that based on its past experience, around 10% to 15% of tickets were resold ahead of an event as plans changed, which would equate to around 1m tickets.

But he criticised the fact that the resale programme was only open for a short window.

"We predict that up to 1m Olympic tickets could be resold, providing a huge opportunity for people to get hold of tickets that might have otherwise gone unused," he said.

"With people looking to sell spare tickets right up to and during the Games, why place a time frame on when consumers can resell? An ongoing resale service provides more opportunities to get tickets and fewer empty seats."

Locog has promised that there will be more opportunities to resell tickets as the Games approach. The final batch of 1.2m tickets across all sports, released once the final seating configurations within venues have been decided, will go on sale in April.

On Wednesday, Locog admitted that 10,000 too many tickets had been sold to four synchronised swimming sessions because of a data processing error. It was forced to contact ticketholders to offer them alternatives to other events from the batch of tickets that will go on sale in April.

by - Owen Gibson


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