Saturday, 10 October 2015

European Away Ticket Collection Survey Results


European Away Ticket Collection Survey Results

The Chelsea Supporters’ Trust carried out a survey at the recent game against Porto regarding the implementation of the new European away ticket collection scheme. CST Board member David Johnstone was present at the pick-up point for a total of 7.5 hours over the 2 days that the collection point was operating.

126 people were asked the following 5 questions. Without repeating 126 individual answers, the responses were as follows:

Did you find the ticket collection point easy and convenient to get to?
117 found it easy
5 had some difficulty
4 had difficulty getting there.

To comply with the Euro ticket collection scheme, did you have to radically alter your travel arrangements and did this have additional cost for you?
114 did not have to change their travel arrangements whilst 12 did – they’d rather have stayed out of Porto until the last minute. However, 75 respondents said that they incurred extra cost due to the fact they arrived at the collection point by taxi with the rest indicating that their accommodation was fairly ‘local’.

Do you think it will lead to fewer supporters travelling abroad?
91 said ‘definitely', 14 said ‘no’ with 21 saying the scheme might lead to more supporters travelling on the premise that there might be less of a ‘troublesome element’ attending if these ‘restrictions’ remained in place.

For what reasons do you think Chelsea FC have implemented this new policy?
The reply to this question was the most consistent with 118 saying one word – “Paris”. The rest (and some of those who replied saying Paris) expanding their answers by saying that Chelsea had put this scheme into operation in order to ensure that the tickets went to those who had actually ordered them/were entitled to them. 

Have you any comments on Chelsea’s implementation of this scheme regarding the ordering, pre-travel arrangements, vouchers and communications etc?
109 said that the information given by Chelsea was clear, easy to understand and, in the eventuality, the collection was as simple as stated on the Chelsea website.

Other comments included the following:
  • Many said they would prefer to use other forms of identity such as a photo-driving licence, rather than a passport. This was borne out by the fact that at least 3 Chelsea supporters had their passports stolen on the way to the match although (luckily in this case) they were recovered and returned to the owners.
  • Can those using the scheme send in photographs of themselves when they apply for tickets in order that those distributing the tickets can identify the purchasers that way? The applicant might also be asked to produce the credit card used to pay for the ticket. 
  • Can Chelsea email the vouchers which can then be produced via a smart-phone, as used by airline companies when issuing boarding passes?
  • Many said that the process was relatively easy on this occasion because Oporto is not a big city. However, places like Paris, Milan, Rome, Madrid, Barcelona etc were bigger and therefore supporters might face a more difficult and more expensive journey to reach the collection point.
  • Some feared that the collection point might, depending on the home team’s hooligan element, give rise to an altercation between themselves and fans of the side that Chelsea are playing.
  • Many commented on the fact that Chelsea had a seemingly ‘more than adequate’ number of staff in place to distribute tickets.
  • Some had problems downloading the PDF application form (although there was, according to the Chelsea staff on site, a Word version) – can this be made clearer to applicants the next time?
  • Several said there was a need for ‘more dialogue’ between the club and supporters.
  • Several indicated that they thought it totally unfair that the majority were being made to undergo this process because of a small minority.
  • For Chelsea supporters who traveled to Porto from abroad rather than the UK, said it saved them an ‘extra trip’ to Stamford Bridge to collect their tickets.
  • A few thought it unfair that ‘corporate’ supporters were not ‘penalized’ by having to attend the collection point.
All in all, using the evidence above, it seems that the majority didn’t mind this scheme although there is, in some aspects at least, room for improvement and a little tinkering. A couple of supporters (that I witnessed) were extremely vocal in their disapproval of the scheme and used language and terms that I am not prepared to repeat in this correspondence!

1 comment:

  1. Well summed up. It is a pain but there you go. With modern technology am surprised there is not an easier way to set up this scheme where tickets can be matched to those that have bought them. You can still get idiots travelling to Paris and taking a ticket off a friend. This friend might still attend the match in the home end.
    One person who was rather worse for wear accused Dave of being under the payment of the club. She also claimed that she always sold any spare tickets on for fair value. As someone who struggled to obtain tickets in my teens because I did not know many fans outside of my family, I agree with the aim of halting the passing on of tickets to some old-boys network. (Ironically, as I am not an away season ticket holder domestically rather than abroad I also have to rely on other fans for tickets for aways in the UK which sellout too quckily).
    Well done for putting in the hours Dave.

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