The Bells Are Ringing


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The Villa Park ticket system

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The Villa Park ticket system

Post by The Utterer on Mon Sep 12, 2016 12:56 pm

Having witnessed first hand the nonsensical system currently being operated at Villa Park i thought a thread needed to be started to hear everyone elses' experiences.

I went up against Forest with my 9 year old daughter. We would be traveling some 30+ miles to get to the ground from my home in Burton upon Trent so i did not want to travel that distance with no tickets secured for obvious reasons.

It was a last minute decision to go in all fairness so i didn't have tickets prior to the day of the game. This often happens to me as i run my own business so it's always a risk to buy tickets in advance in case something crops up last minute meaning i can't go.

Initially i went online presuming i could choose a couple of seats and buy the tickets, (especially as i have a booking history which will become a talking point later in this post). Alas after much scouring about the internet i realised eventually (even though this was not easy to find information) that i could not book online on the day of the game.

My next move was to phone the ticket office. Maybe i can pay by phone i thought, or at least ensure i can buy tickets on the day in person and it's not sold out etc. I called the 0333 number (premium rate no doubt) and was told by the robotic answering machine that my call would be answered within 10 minutes.

25 minutes  later  i was STILL on hold and could wait no longer otherwise, allowing travel time to the stadium and parking etc, i would miss the KO time. So on a wing and a prayer we left for the ground on the premise i would be able to buy tickets once there.

We arrived and parked and got to the ticket office at approx 12.50pm with KO due at 1:15pm. There was a queue! A very slow moving Queue!!  I would estimate some 30 to 40 people were in the queue and with around 9 ticket portals open it was approx 1:25pm by the time we got tickets and into the Holte end.

So we got in, having missed the first part of the game.

One thing though really staggered me....whilst in the queue for tickets a young excited looking tourist type Chinese guy joined in the queue. Security went straight up to him and said are you after a ticket?! He seemed a little surprised by the rather abrasive manner in which he was spoken to by security and hesitated most likely being uncertain who the man was... again he was prompted (even more abrasively this time) " ARE YOU WANTING A TICKET?!" ... he nodded .."Yes" Have you got a booking history? he was asked ..again he paused and was asked twice as he was no doubt a little rattled by such direct questioning on his first visit to Villa Park... "NO don't think so" he smiled and looked a bit concerned!....." OH WELL YOU CAN'T COME IN TO TODAY'S GAME THEN! Said security and promptly sent him packing!!.....I MEAN WHAAAT!!

The poor guy was likely a new Chinese fan coming all excited to his first ever Villa game.. He may have even flown over especially for all we know...and he was sent away!!! UNBELIEVABLE!! I felt ashamed on behalf of the club and even wanted to tell him to come in with us but sadly he had already left looking really disappointed by the time i thought it through.

DISTURBING! Does this club actually want a full stadium? If so sort it out for goodness sake!


Last edited by The Utterer on Tue Sep 13, 2016 2:24 am; edited 2 times in total
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Re: The Villa Park ticket system

Post by NARLA24 on Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:22 pm

Great post and very distressing to hear about this young fan and the way he was treated. Shocking system if this is going to happen. Needs to be changed asap.
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Re: The Villa Park ticket system

Post by FoxyAV on Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:26 pm

Any chance someone who knows how such things work can tweet the good Dr with the bit about someone without booking history not being able to buy a ticket? That's ridiculous.
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Re: The Villa Park ticket system

Post by The Utterer on Mon Sep 12, 2016 1:39 pm

FoxyAV wrote:Any chance someone who knows how such things work can tweet the good Dr with the bit about someone without booking history not being able to buy a ticket? That's ridiculous.

It's completely nuts isn't it FoxyAV! Now i understand say against SHA or Wolves a little bit of caution being used when selling tickets to fans on the day as they may be troublesome fans trying to get into the home end or whatever..but surely a young Chinese fan with camera obviously does not fall into that catagory and common sense should prevail?! if in doubt surely the said fan, if they looked a bit questionable for instance, could be told they could only buy in the Doug Ellis upper or something?! Crazy!
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Re: The Villa Park ticket system

Post by Villa_Dan on Mon Sep 12, 2016 2:10 pm

How does one get a booking history if they aren't allowed to buy tickets?
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Re: The Villa Park ticket system

Post by Boldfinger on Mon Sep 12, 2016 3:02 pm

I must be the lucky one. I have never had any issues getting tickets (when I have the right criteria) and I have always found the ticket office staff friendly and helpful.
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Re: The Villa Park ticket system

Post by Trotters on Mon Sep 12, 2016 4:26 pm

@The Utterer would you be okay if I link this thread in a tweet to Tony?
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Re: The Villa Park ticket system

Post by The Utterer on Tue Sep 13, 2016 2:20 am

Trotters wrote:@The Utterer would you be okay if I link this thread in a tweet to Tony?

Yes fine Trotters!

For the record I did call Villa Park today and mentioned it ( as i lost my credit card when celebrating a goal when it flew out of my pocket and wanted to see if it had been found! ) A guy called Dan called me back later and we went through it, he said some good points raised and was always good to get feedback like this. He said it was a fact that it had been advised that no people be allowed in unless they had a booking history the same as with some other upcoming games though agreed that a young Chinese camera bearing lad excited to be at his first ever game was pushing it somewhat! He also agreed that maybe the fact that you cannot buy a ticket online on the day of the game maybe needed to be more clear on the website and stated that there had been "computer issues" which had not helped with answering phones that day!

I have no issue with tagging this to Tony though if you think it'll help? I just wanna see VP rocking! Not turning fans away or putting obstacles into the way of going to games!
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Re: The Villa Park ticket system

Post by Trotters on Tue Sep 13, 2016 2:48 am

I've done it via twitter. I've no doubt he'll see it (he commented on @De Kuip's thread about the change in players attitudes towards the fans) but...I don't think he'll acknowledge it publicly.

It'seems clear though that he's all over changing things for the better so well done on your initial post! I'm sure it'll make a difference.
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