AFL accessible ticketing
John Duthie spoke to Ali Clarke and David Bevan, ABC Radio Adelaide, on behalf of the Dignity Party. John spoke about the problem with AFL accessible ticketing. He attempted booking AFL tickets for wheelchair accessible seating, both via Ticketek’s website and the Special Needs hotline. The transcript follows…
Bevan: Good morning John Duthie … what was your experience in the last 24 hours?
John: Well firstly I normally sit with my group of walking friends in the eastern wing and it’s great sitting next to them, so I started calling Ticketek at 9 am. And after about 200 phone calls I was halfway through the three-hour window. And I knew at the same time that non-accessible fans were able to get their tickets, waiting only 10 to 15 minutes online. So then I decided to book online with the eight barcodes, but by then the cheaper seats had gone, and it was getting harder to find eight seats together, and I didn’t want to let my friends down. So it only took me a few minutes online and I managed to get eight seats in the southern stands. But being upstairs I can’t sit with them. So yeah, I had quite a few problems yesterday and I still can’t sit with my friends.
Clarke: So John I will point out that you are in a wheelchair and that’s what makes it hard then for you to sit with your friends. So the actual way that people that need help or have special needs to get these tickets and they’ve been directed to, is to try this hotline.
John: Yeah, I asked the Port Adelaide Football Club how I can sit with my friends, and they said to call the Ticketek Special Needs hotline. So I did, but you know, the online system doesn’t allow people with accessible seating requests to book online, so [unclear] anyway.
Clarke: And is part of that because they have to have a companion, be able to sit with them, or to be able to have other seats around them so you can have eight or nine people that you want to sit with?
John: Well it’s just not possible to book online if you’ve got accessible seating requests. So … fans in wheelchairs are either missing out on tickets or paying more or not being able to sit with their friends.
Clarke: I just can’t understand though why people in wheelchairs can’t book online? Why is that?
John: I’m not exactly sure … it does require some system changes and some checks and balances are placed to ensure that people who don’t need seating requests don’t get them.
Clarke: Okay … I hope somehow that there can be an easier way to get people to the football. Thank you for your time.
The audio of interview about AFL accessible ticketing