Where do I get Vancouver Olympics tickets this late in the process?
October 9, 2009 10:01 AM   Subscribe

I just realized the Olympics are happening in a few months and they are within driving distance. I have memories of going to several events during the 1984 games as a small kid, and loving the experience. Is there any chance this late in the game that I could get tickets to some events like speed skating or ski jumping? Are scalpers the only option at this point? Are hotels already well-booked?

Basically I'm wondering what my chances are of getting into an olympic event, as a lazy american that completely forgot about the games until now.
posted by mathowie to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (12 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I lived in Atlanta when the Olympics were there & had no problem getting last minute tickets. We went to badminton & goalball. Both were awesome.
posted by torquemaniac at 10:20 AM on October 9, 2009

I looked into this way back and Americans couldn't enter the ticket lottery. So you didn't miss out on that part.

Cosport is the official reseller for the USA, and is crazy expensive. Note that their website is designed to drive you mad, showing you tons of stuff that is already sold out but that you can't tell until you click through on each and every one. The most reasonable thing is $200 ice hockey tickets. Or if you want to see figure skating you can get a $3,639.50 per person package that includes hotel.
posted by smackfu at 10:26 AM on October 9, 2009

Looks like they expect tickets to be available even in February. Have a look at the bottom of this page.
posted by Listener at 10:31 AM on October 9, 2009

Hotels would have to be long gone, about 90% of the rooms were pre-reserved for IOC folks to begin with. There are a lot of people trying to sublet their places for inflated prices on Craigslist, but personally I think they're deluding themselves and if you wait till January reality will set in and you'll be able to find a reasonable place to stay. There are also a fair number of agencies arranging temporary accommodation with homeowners; I would suggest this one since it is a charity to help the homeless and they encourage affordable rates.

Re: tickets, they are talking about legalizing ticket reselling so keep your ears open.
posted by PercussivePaul at 10:34 AM on October 9, 2009

Anecdote: I have a lot of family and friends in Utah, and none of them had any problem getting tickets to the popular events even shortly before the event. I cannot speak to the legality or specifics of their methods - only to their effectiveness.
posted by The World Famous at 11:22 AM on October 9, 2009

People only think the rental prices are insane because they don't realize that a 2BR condo in Vancouver costs >$500k + strata +insurance+utilities and so it costs about $150 a night just to live there when it's your *own* home with your own furnishings. Add in cleaning service, furnishings and so on, plus the business license City Hall requires, and the $300 per room per night is not that crazy for a short-term rental with high risk. A furnished 2BR apartment is easily $2500-$3000 a month in the first place.

I hear it's pretty easy and affordable to get tickets to the Paralympics. It's a great chance to see high calibre sports.
posted by acoutu at 11:48 AM on October 9, 2009

I emailed you, Matt.
posted by timeistight at 12:31 PM on October 9, 2009

It also depends on the event. Figure skating is huge, and tickets will likely be hard to find. Curling, not so much. If you're not picky, I bet you can see a whole bunch of cool events, just maybe not the massively popular ones.
posted by Aquaman at 12:45 PM on October 9, 2009

Figure skating is huge, and tickets will likely be hard to find. Curling, not so much.

Heh. You don't know how big Curling is in Canada, eh?
posted by Pufferish at 1:04 PM on October 9, 2009

No, I love curling. Watch it all the time. But at the last few Olympics I've seen, the curling stadium was more than half empty, even at the finals. Breaks my heart.
posted by Aquaman at 1:06 PM on October 9, 2009

I guarantee you the curling events will be sold out.
posted by randomstriker at 1:26 PM on October 9, 2009 [1 favorite]

The Winter Olympics in Utah had tickets available to many events. They were absurdly expensive for the marquee events ($125 mens downhill, an event that lasted about 90 minutes, ski jumping was in the $150 to $200 range). Curling was $40 and was a great spectator event. Also, the nordic events were pretty reasonable as well.
I say go!
posted by Carmody'sPrize at 1:28 PM on October 9, 2009

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