Barcelona announce plans to revoke season tickets among non-attendees
The Camp Nou board has taken a series of measures in response to the Eintracht Frankfurt debacle, when 30,000 travelling fans managed to get tickets.
The board of directors at FC Barcelona have decided to take steps to counter a lack of attendance in the stadium belonging to season ticket-holders who don’t turn up for games or take advantage of the option to let someone else occupy their spot through club resales. The club has also announced that a leave of absence put in place during the covid-19 pandemic, whereby season ticket holders were not expected to attend or to cede their seats for public safety reasons, has now been withdrawn.
Barcelona institutional vice-president Elena Fort told a press conference that these decisions, as well as a standardization of season ticket prices, were taken after the Europa League game against Eintracht Frankfurt, when tens of thousands of away fans managed to get tickets at Camp Nou, leading to club president Joan Laporta stating he was “ashamed” and a subsequent boycott by the Grada d’Animacio supporters’ group, which described the incident as “the greatest infamy at our home.”
“Many season ticket holders, between 2,500 and 3,000, do not come to the stadium or free up their tickets and many do not attend 85% of games. Our objective is to improve attendance and as such we are calling for responsibility among season ticket holders. We want to fill Camp Nou with club members. If those who hold season tickets do not come, let a family member or a friend come or give up your seat so it can be resold,” Font said.
Barça to crack down on empty Camp Nou seats
Barcelona are planning a new census of club members to find out the exact number of season ticket holders. Fort explained that “season ticket holders who attend more than 85% of games will have benefits such as being entered into draws to win holidays or discounts on food and drink. On the other hand, those who do not attend regularly or who give up their seat at least 10 times will find that their season tickets are withdrawn [for one game] if they do not inform the club of their intention with 72 hours’ notice before the start of the game. Those who do not attend at all will have their season tickets revoked. If they attend at least once, they will not be subject to this measure.”
Another measure Barça are taking is to digitalize all season tickets through an app that will be rolled out on a voluntary six-month trial period. In this way, the change of season ticket names (from grandparents to grandchildren, for example) will be made easier, ticket packages will be established at fixed prices for non-season ticket holders, and tickets will be nominative for all competitions to avoid finding their way onto the resale market.
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