Olympic tickets resold after empty seat furore

Olympic tickets that won't be used are now being resold to visitors in the Olympic Park, after criticism over empty seats at the weekend (28-29 July).

Some venues had empty seats over the weekend
Some venues had empty seats over the weekend

Empty spaces were visible at some venues during the first few days of sports due to members of the Olympic Family – officials, athletes, sponsors and accredited media - not using tickets allocated to them.

Olympic organiser Locog has introduced a range of measures to ensure more seats are filled. It is offering a re-sale system to people already in the Olympic Park, similar to that used at Wimbledon, for some sports including hockey, basketball, water polo and handball.

Tickets can be purchased for £5 and just under 300 tickets were resold for handball events on Saturday. 

Accredited tickets that will not be used will also be put back on sale via the London 2012 website if possible. Locog told Event 1,000 tickets for gymnastics were put on sale overnight on Saturday and were all bought by the public.

Tickets will also be given to students visiting the park in the Key Seats programme and to army troops working at the park who have finished their shifts. Locog is also considering upgrading members of the public to accredited seats if possible.

The news comes after Locog was critisised over the weekend as many Olympic Park venues were photographed with noticeable empty seats.

Tessa Jowell, Labour’s shadow minister for London and the Olympics, said: "Anyone who is lucky enough to have tickets to the Games should either use them or give them up. I am pleased to see that unused tickets are now being distributed to members of our armed forces, local teachers and students. It is important that this process is stepped up to ensure that every single available ticket is offered to somebody who will use it."

Olympic sponsor McDonald's told Event it had bought all of its tickets rather than being allocated them, and was "confident" that all its tickets were being used.

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