Thousands of tickets still unsold for Sochi Olympics

Prices start at $16, but security concerns may be keeping fans away

by Jonathon Gatehouse

Sana/Reuters

Great seats are still available. Thousands of them. Less than three weeks before the start of the Sochi Winter Olympics, organizers have admitted that 30 per cent of their ticket inventory remains unsold. Demand has been “traditional,” maintains Games chief Dmitry Chernyshenko, and sales are brisk on both the Internet and at kiosks. But after spending $51 billion, it appears Russia will be staging the most expensive—and perhaps least attended—Olympics ever.

The latest block of tickets went on sale just before Christmas, yet the official website remains chocked with deals. A pass to watch Kaillie Humphries and Heather Moyse slide for gold in women’s bobsled is just $48. Seats for Canada’s opening-round tilt with the U.S. in men’s hockey are $65. Passes to the gold-medal game in women’s hockey can be had for $212. In all, tickets to 73 medal events remain available. And that’s not counting the authorized fan “resale” site, which boasts 3,000 listings.

High travel costs and renewed fears of terrorism seem to be keeping away international tourists. And even with ticket prices as low as 500 rubles ($16)—cheaper than most Games souvenirs—Russians are balking at the long trip to the fringe of the federation. Authorities planned for 213,000 visitors, but have only issued 110,000 “spectators’ passports” to date. Vancouver, in case you’re keeping score, sold 1.5 million tickets in 2010.




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Thousands of tickets still unsold for Sochi Olympics

  1. Olympics have been and always will be a political show boating shit show going way back.1980 boycott,1972 munich massacre,atlanta.Seems to be a flashpoint area of russia with black widow terrorists,possible all out civil war in ukraine…our canadian athletes should do well in the medals category not so sure if theyll get a peace of mind in a dangerous geo-political part of the world.Friggin seems scary over there,some sports newscasters I heard were interviewing security analysts and asked, if they would allow their own sons or daughters to go there,reply..yes but with caution.

  2. Since Putin has showed himself as a Russian Bully and a Dictator, I hope Sochi Turns into an Empty Field and No One Shows Up. His Trying to Control The Ukraine shows His Ignorance

    • one can only hope!

  3. Beating gay activists, killing stray dogs, stealing orcas, Putin’s bullies enforcing corruption, human rights violations, beating peaceful protestors in the Ukraine and who knows what else. I am done with Sochi won’t be watching one second of it. I support Canada’s athletes and wish them all the best, but I won’t give any support to such a disgusting regime.

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