Tickets surface for big game

TICKETS for tomorrow’s Heineken Cup quarter final between Leicester and Munster surfaced in both Cork and Limerick yesterday.

Fans who begged, stole and borrowed in a bid to get their hands on part of Munster’s 4,000 allocation, found they could easily have picked up tickets because of a transportation problem.

Cork travel agents Lee and Dawson Travel admitted yesterday that each had been offered tickets for the game.

The problem was that neither they, or McCarthy Travel, who today transport hundreds of fans on special charters, could come up with the airline seats to accommodate the willing travellers.

Lee Travel boss Declan O'Connell commented: “Basically it has all come down to difficulties in getting an extra flight.

“We didn't have access to tickets for the game in the first place and we had to be careful to tailor our needs to requirements.

“Most, if not all of our clients, had tickets for the game so that eased the problems from our point of view. It was just a case of providing airline seats and organising accommodation where necessary.”

Dawson Travel managing director Pat Dawson did, however, make the following observation.

“It’s a pity the whole effort couldn't have been coordinated. We booked an aircraft but could not over extend ourselves because we didn’t know what the availability of tickets was.

“Early on there was a lot of confusion as to how many tickets would be made available. Some fans booked tickets and acquired them through the normal channels. But they didn’t book flights because they weren’t quite sure whether they would get match-tickets.

“A lot of people were bold enough to book flights without tickets and it has all become a bit confusing. We know, however, that there are people out there with tickets for the match but with no way of getting to Leicester.

“When it was learned that there was potential to put on another flight to cater for those fans, it was too late.

“We could, for instance, have secured an aircraft but the price was too high. The base cost would have worked out at almost 390 per person. With the risk involved, we would have had to charge customers anything up to 500.

“That would not have gone down too well with customers and we therefore took the decision not to take up the offer.

“It would have involved too much money from our point of view, too much money for the punters and, ultimately, it might have been bad for business. There is only so much you can ask people to pay for any product.”

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