The Commonwealth Games organizing committee on Friday launched the sale of tickets for the mega event. The sales got off to a scorching start with OC sources saying tickets worth around Rs 20 lakh were sold on Friday.
Ticket rates range from Rs 50-1,000 for sports events. Rates for the opening and closing ceremonies are much higher - Rs 1,000-50,000 for the opening ceremony and Rs 750-50,000 for the closing event. Around 17 lakh tickets are expected to be sold for the Games.
The tickets will be available for online booking through the Organizing Committee's website www.tickets.cwgdelhi2010.org), outlets of Central Bank of India and Hero Honda in Delhi and NCR and OC's ticketing call centre (1800-200-1294).
The first ceremonial ticket was given to the L-G, Tejendra Khanna, even as OC head Suresh Kalmadi acknowledged that tickets were priced "reasonably" due to the Delhi government's waiver of entertainment tax.
"I hope all Delhiites will come forward and buy tickets in large numbers resulting in houseful stadiums in all competitions," he added.
OC is relying on brisk sales to repay the Rs 1,620 crore loan it got from the Centre for organizing the Games, especially since prospective corporate sponsors haven't shown much interest in the event.
The good news is that almost 40% of the tickets for the sporting events have been kept at Rs 200 and below. Also, four of the events - the marathon, the walk, cycling road race and the cycling time trial, are all free. For those booking online though, an upper sale limit of two tickets has been kept for the opening and closing ceremonies while for the sporting event, the limit is four.
Actual physical tickets are only going to be available from August 1. The official ticketing agency for the Delhi Games 2010, IRCTC, will also provide ticket sales online, through a call centre, a network of retail outlets and at different sporting venues during the Games. IRCTC will also provide call centres for giving information and handling queries from the public related to ticketing.
The tickets are going to be sold in three phases, with the 40% reserved for the local market going on sale in the first phase (now to August). Phase III will begin just before the Games (October 1) where venue sales outlets will be added to the sales channel.
Spectators can choose to get their tickets delivered through courier or pick it up themselves if they book online or through the call centre. Each ticket holder can travel free of charge in Delhi Metro trains and DTC buses to reach and return from the venue on the day of the event.
Also, to discourage sale of counterfeit tickets, the tickets have been printed at Government of India Security Press with inbuilt foolproof security features.
Incidentally, all venues will have accessible seating for spectators with special needs (based on the international standards of 0.5% of the total venue seating capacity).