Advance Ticket Sales Good idea or not?

Re: Advance Ticket Sales Good idea or not?

Postby cuban8 on Wed 01 Jun 2016, 9:25 am

I don't like the idea of having advance tickets for regular Duxford airshows, but can see the merit of it when a 'spectacular' is planned to avoid chaos. However, we have what IWM has given us, and their £ takings will tell them if it's a success or otherwise. One thing I really can't fathom is why stop on-line sales at midnight Friday? Fair enough if taking cash at the gate is now a thing of the past, but preventing purchases from your Iphone, PC or whatever on the day, if tickets are available, seem very odd. When they're sold out, then it's end of story.
cuban8

Re: Advance Ticket Sales Good idea or not?

Postby tankbuster on Wed 01 Jun 2016, 9:37 am

Thoughtful_Flyer wrote:
pbeardmore wrote:"All-ticket puts the balance of power in the organiser's hands,"

Its a very interesting debate re business models, the basic concept has to be that you can get some where near a sell out and then punters will be afraid of a sell out and then be forced into making a decision without info re the weather or other plans etc. It also ensures that the organisers know exactly how many will be coming (traffic, parking, looks etc)

BUT

for shows that have a relatively large capacity and a line up that does not pull in a big pre-show interest, you have to wonder if the policy does pay off. If there is no sell out and you get fantastic weather, the organisers are effectively turning away a whole market sector of "fair weather fans" who want to enjoy a good sunny day out.

By definition, only when the tickets sell out do the organisers know that they made the right decision to go all ticket. If they dont sell out, they will never know of the lost revenue that they have sacrificed by not taking cash on the day. So the balance of power is not all in their hands as they have tied thier hands re the ability to make further profit on the day.


I would like to see some proper figures, not guesses and rumours.

It is a two edged sword. By going "advance ticket only" you can hype it along with "selling fast - last few remaining" etc etc. Also you can oversell your capacity as statistically X% will not turn up. You also have some administrative cost savings and the ability to reduce casual staffing levels if sales are not going well.

Against that you lose those who, for whatever reason, will only pay at the gate and are not prepared to book online right up to 8 hours before the gate opened on Saturday.

It is very easy to look at the sparse crowd on Saturday and say "Oh, they would have flocked in had it been cash on the door" but would they? Given the murky condition there may actually have been even less!

It is not that simple.


I think it is very simple

Advanced tickets at significant discount gives the organisers up front numbers
A few days before event prices increase
Tickets still available on line throughout, no cash sales, just an electronic copy on your phone.
I wake upon Saturday morning think I'd like to go, I buy a ticket on line at inflated price which I am prepared to pay as my fair weather premium.
Organisers get advance sales and don't miss out on the fair weather enthusiasts

I'm sure someone will tell me what's wrong with that model but it works for me.
Trevor C
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tankbuster

Re: Advance Ticket Sales Good idea or not?

Postby Finningley Boy on Wed 01 Jun 2016, 9:44 am

My understanding is that RIAT introduced advanced ticket only sales following the debacle of 2008, the weather being the primary cause, however, the off field parking on grass fields put the top hat on it. What I can't quite understand is where they now benefit? After all its the Bottom Line, funding, surely they do better to sell tickets at the door. I can only imagine the delay in Security checks is enough of a delay without a further queue (for some) to get their tickets and perhaps they're saving on personnel costs by avoiding the need for ticket booths and sellers. However, it is also lost revenue, on the other hand I imagine RIAT can literally sellout to capacity in advance every time. I don't know how Cosford get on since they thought it was a good idea after the roads were jammed, 2013 I think it was, but I wouldn't be surprised if it has hurt their takings, it certainly seems so at Duxford. I don't like the idea, it now makes those who have gone down that route seclusive, you now have to commit to them before the event, you may not be able to attend at short notice due to unforeseen circumstances, on the other hand, you might only know that you're able to attend the day before or on the very morning and then decide to treat yourself. No more, its like booking for a bloody rock star concert now. We're certainly going down the wrong road with advanced ticket sales and advanced carpark ticketing! That blew all my gaskets with Duxford together with the attempt to turn the Restaurant into a place where city execs go for lunch.

I'll go to a happy place instead and recall the morning my father was on the phone to RAF Finningley, one of 12 RAF stations that day staging an airshow, to ask if the show was going ahead as it was raining outside, yes they said the weather was expected to clear by lunchtime, off we went and apart from paying to park the car, everyone got in for free, the same across the country at all the other RAF 'at homes' and the flying would run rings round anything but RIAT or the air force events on the continent this year, but only in terms of solos, the number of formations was something else. :biggrin:

FB :biggrin: :cuppa:
I have danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings!
Finningley Boy

Re: Advance Ticket Sales Good idea or not?

Postby st24 on Wed 01 Jun 2016, 10:10 am

I think the comparison of buying advance tickets for airshows to those of concerts, festivals, sporting fixtures etc is a loss leader. If you buy an advance ticket for an internal, or largely internal event, short of famine, hurricanes, plague, death of the artists(s) you are going to see then the event will go ahead. Airshows are so weather dependant that you just can't book weeks in advance and just hope the sun will shine. I can see both sides of the argument but just can't understand why the option for Sat OR Sun tickets or book up to the second you leave options can't be retained. Make it more user friendly otherwise many of us are just held to ransom and/or given the hype "tickets selling fast - buy them or we will kill you"...
You caaan't trust the system... Maaan!
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st24

Re: Advance Ticket Sales Good idea or not?

Postby Thoughtful_Flyer on Wed 01 Jun 2016, 10:12 am

tankbuster wrote:
Thoughtful_Flyer wrote:
pbeardmore wrote:"All-ticket puts the balance of power in the organiser's hands,"

Its a very interesting debate re business models, the basic concept has to be that you can get some where near a sell out and then punters will be afraid of a sell out and then be forced into making a decision without info re the weather or other plans etc. It also ensures that the organisers know exactly how many will be coming (traffic, parking, looks etc)

BUT

for shows that have a relatively large capacity and a line up that does not pull in a big pre-show interest, you have to wonder if the policy does pay off. If there is no sell out and you get fantastic weather, the organisers are effectively turning away a whole market sector of "fair weather fans" who want to enjoy a good sunny day out.

By definition, only when the tickets sell out do the organisers know that they made the right decision to go all ticket. If they dont sell out, they will never know of the lost revenue that they have sacrificed by not taking cash on the day. So the balance of power is not all in their hands as they have tied thier hands re the ability to make further profit on the day.


I would like to see some proper figures, not guesses and rumours.

It is a two edged sword. By going "advance ticket only" you can hype it along with "selling fast - last few remaining" etc etc. Also you can oversell your capacity as statistically X% will not turn up. You also have some administrative cost savings and the ability to reduce casual staffing levels if sales are not going well.

Against that you lose those who, for whatever reason, will only pay at the gate and are not prepared to book online right up to 8 hours before the gate opened on Saturday.

It is very easy to look at the sparse crowd on Saturday and say "Oh, they would have flocked in had it been cash on the door" but would they? Given the murky condition there may actually have been even less!

It is not that simple.


I think it is very simple

Advanced tickets at significant discount gives the organisers up front numbers
A few days before event prices increase
Tickets still available on line throughout, no cash sales, just an electronic copy on your phone.
I wake upon Saturday morning think I'd like to go, I buy a ticket on line at inflated price which I am prepared to pay as my fair weather premium.
Organisers get advance sales and don't miss out on the fair weather enthusiasts

I'm sure someone will tell me what's wrong with that model but it works for me.


Presumably, given that other venue's online sales also cease the day before, it is a limitation of the ticketing system they use?

I imagine the data is downloaded to the individual scanners in each hut rather than them having a live connection to the online system?

I agree it does seem crazy not to have one lane that can take live sales but, as I said earlier, once that becomes common knowelege it rapidly negates the advanced ticket only policy.

As others have said I suspect the policy is being at least encouraged by the Council, Highways Agency and the Police rather than being totally of the IWM's choosing.
Thoughtful_Flyer

Re: Advance Ticket Sales Good idea or not?

Postby pbeardmore on Wed 01 Jun 2016, 10:20 am

That point re the scanners makes perfect sense, obviously the ticket sheds are temp, they would need a wireless connection via the Tank Hall to have real time access to ticekts purchased a few mins ago, I had not thought of that issue.
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pbeardmore

Re: Advance Ticket Sales Good idea or not?

Postby cg_341 on Wed 01 Jun 2016, 10:32 am

pbeardmore wrote:That point re the scanners makes perfect sense, obviously the ticket sheds are temp, they would need a wireless connection via the Tank Hall to have real time access to ticekts purchased a few mins ago, I had not thought of that issue.

Most ticketing companies have their own 4G connections that they use. At a couple of events already this year (non-aviation), tickets have still been on sale during the event, with ticketing system sending updates every 5 minutes to the scanners on the gates.
cg_341

Re: Advance Ticket Sales Good idea or not?

Postby Thoughtful_Flyer on Wed 01 Jun 2016, 10:44 am

Hampshire Aviation wrote:
pbeardmore wrote:That point re the scanners makes perfect sense, obviously the ticket sheds are temp, they would need a wireless connection via the Tank Hall to have real time access to ticekts purchased a few mins ago, I had not thought of that issue.

Most ticketing companies have their own 4G connections that they use. At a couple of events already this year (non-aviation), tickets have still been on sale during the event, with ticketing system sending updates every 5 minutes to the scanners on the gates.


I'm sure it is technically possible although, having said that, we have all seen chaos resulting from relying on the mobile phone network at busy venues. Stall holders not being able to process card sales etc etc....

However, if as I and others have speculated, the advance ticket policy is being forced on the IWM from "above" then it is rather academic.
Thoughtful_Flyer

Re: Advance Ticket Sales Good idea or not?

Postby Thoughtful_Flyer on Thu 02 Jun 2016, 10:07 am

I have just received a letter from Shuttleworth about advanced ticket sales.

Although it says that it is not their policy to change to advanced ticket only (unless sold out) it stresses that they now have to comply with a "strict limit on numbers".

I wonder therefore if Duxford's capacity has been significantly reduced?
Thoughtful_Flyer

Re: Advance Ticket Sales Good idea or not?

Postby King Cobra on Thu 02 Jun 2016, 6:04 pm

Flare Path wrote:
jalfrezi wrote:
Flare Path wrote:
Wrexham Mackem wrote:Availability of advance tickets is a great idea, with a little discount as a reward for committing yourself early. For busy events they'll sell out, and that's fine.

But to not sell tickets on the gate when they're not sold out - lunacy! what on earth can be their justification for that? I can't think of a single reason why they wouldn't. People want to come, there's space inside for them, why on earth not sell them a ticket?


Advance admission allows them to plan better and should absolutely be the golden standard moving forward. Turning up on the day to pay with cash is long gone and has no place in 2016. Not forgetting, printing off your own tickets far outweighs the: 'Well I only knew a few days ago.' - you can secure tickets, purchased and printed in a matter of minutes. It's strange people insist on living years behind by being upset over advanced admission only.

Anyway, better get used to it because the CAA won't allow anything else. :heyhey:


Golden standard? Really? It's all well and good if you've got an act like the Red Arrows/Vulcan/Two Lancs/BoB Anniversary, but for this weekends show it was crazy to NOT have tickets on the gate, and it has probably cost them a significant amount of revenue.

If you don't mind watching an airshow in the rain or a howling gale - be my guest, but I'd rather have an idea of what the weather is going to be like before spending my hard earned cash, and people with families are even more likely to wait until the last minute.


They've done this for a reason, and there'll be planning that has gone into it and finances worked out prior to this - if it's as bad as you're suggesting, the show wouldn't have taken place. And who knows, they may have been required to do this by the CAA (more than likely). As for your second point, plenty of families near me and there'll always be weather - they've got a decent museum too, by the sounds of it.


Are you suggesting that the IWM would cancel a show due to poor ticket sales? That would be a PR disaster. Wouldn't be too clever finically either with refunds and acts still to be paid for. As for suggesting the CAA can demand how an organisation organises its ticket sales, what strange thinking.
King Cobra

Re: Advance Ticket Sales Good idea or not?

Postby King Cobra on Thu 02 Jun 2016, 6:05 pm

Thoughtful_Flyer wrote:I have just received a letter from Shuttleworth about advanced ticket sales.

Although it says that it is not their policy to change to advanced ticket only (unless sold out) it stresses that they now have to comply with a "strict limit on numbers".

I wonder therefore if Duxford's capacity has been significantly reduced?


You can still apply a limit on numbers and have pay on the day. More hassle I agree once they've sold out.
King Cobra

Re: Advance Ticket Sales Good idea or not?

Postby King Cobra on Thu 02 Jun 2016, 6:11 pm

Young Pete wrote:Might the advance ticket policy be for security reasons?

1: Jihadist nutters (or, if Guardianistas are reading: innocent, helpless and justified victims of evil Western capitalist foreign policy)
2: If there's an accident, they know exactly who's inside.


Not necessarily. If I book for myself and some of my mates, the booking will be in my name not theirs.
King Cobra

Re: Advance Ticket Sales Good idea or not?

Postby Hatstand on Thu 02 Jun 2016, 7:12 pm

Thoughtful_Flyer wrote:I have just received a letter from Shuttleworth about advanced ticket sales.

Although it says that it is not their policy to change to advanced ticket only (unless sold out) it stresses that they now have to comply with a "strict limit on numbers".

I wonder therefore if Duxford's capacity has been significantly reduced?

Perhaps the more pertinent part of that SVAS letter was not that Shuttleworth have to "conform to a strict limit on numbers"... but that they also have to "be able to prove that these restrictions have been adhered to". I guess with "advance tickets only" it becomes a lot easier to provide such proof?

I'd rather Duxford (and others) follow the Shuttleworth model for ticket sales... but of course, that's nothing new!
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