This weekend, Saturday September 30, sees the Adelaide Crows take on the Richmond Tigers in the AFL Grand Final. If you’re a rabid fan who has followed either of those teams for 26 weeks, then you definitely want to be there at ‘The Big Dance’. But there’s only 34,000 tickets for club members and the Crows and Richmond have a combined membership well over 100,000.
How can you get tickets?
If you’re not aware, Grand Final tickets are allocated to members who have pre-registered on the Ticketek website, prior to the preliminary finals. Gold members are guaranteed tickets, but any lower tier memberships must go into a ballot and cross their fingers, hoping they’ll get the opportunity to be there on the Last Saturday In September. If social media is telling me anything – a lot of people missed out on the ballot.
I’ll freely admit, at this stage of the year, it’s really bloody hard to acquire tickets to the Grand Final, especially considering the two clubs that are playing. However, it's not impossible. There’s hope! There are a few avenues to explore before you give up and settle on watching it at the local pub or from the comfort of your own couch – and those aren’t entirely bad places to watch from anyway!
When trying to find tickets this late in the piece, here’s your best chances.
Radio stations, such as Triple M, are the most likely to be running Grand Final ticket giveaways, particularly if you’re living in SA or Victoria. I wouldn’t be surprised if national broadcasters had a few tickets to be giving away also, so I’d be listening out and phoning in as much as possible. If you've never called a radio station before, my hot tip is to be the most excitable, loud version of yourself that you can be - radio stations love that sort of thing.
Other than that, here are a couple others that I found with a quick Google that are still open:
- 7 News are running a ‘watch out for the codeword’ promotion that ends on Wednesday night. The codeword is displayed during 7 News broadcasts and then you can enter it on this website.
- The Herald Sun are doing a similar codeword-based competition. You can find the codeword in the newspaper until September 27 and then enter on this website. An identical competition is running in The Weekly Times (Vic Only).
- If you get down to Melbourne's Queen Victoria Markets between 11am and 1pm on Tuesday September 26, you have a chance to win two tickets to the Grand Final by snapping a photo of yourself at the event and uploading to the What's On Melbourne Facebook page.
- Draftstars are running a competition on their Facebook where you have to name the five player silhouettes. All correct entries posted before 3pm Tuesday September 26 are in the running to win. To help you out? The five player silhouettes are, from left to right: Dustin Martin, Ben Brown, Gary Ablett Jnr, Scott Pendlebury and Dyson Heppell.
- Adelaide Casino is offering two Grand Final tickets through this website. You must enter before 12pm on Wednesday September 27.
- Gerard Whateley announced on AFL 360 last night that they would be giving away 2 Grand Final tickets on Friday at their live site. It appears the best dressed will win the tickets. We'll update when more information is available
- Foodland in South Australia are running a competition to land four tickets. You have to spend $30 or more in one transaction on specific products to be eligible to enter. It includes flights, accommodation and tickets to the Grand Final breakfast.
- If you're in Ballarat or passing through, you can enter the draw for two tickets by spending $50 or more at the AFL store before end of day September 26.
- Win tickets with Gatorade Australia by posting a training picture or video for your chance to win. Must post to their Facebook page and the competition is open until September 29. Only includes tickets, not accommodation or airfares.
While most club members would rather give up their first-born child than part with their ticket, very occasionally you’ll see a post in supporter’s forums where an unfortunate member is trying to offload a ticket – for a price, of course. It’s best to scope this avenue out through Facebook, but be wary of those trying to take advantage of your desperation! Don’t hand over any cash until you’ve got the tickets in your hands.
This is super important because all Grand Final tickets have to be picked up from Ticketek, in person. The AFL Grand Final only has physical, paper tickets. If someone is offering to email or scan their tickets and send them to you, decline!
Gumtree is a dumpster fire at the moment because no one that has been allocated Grand Final tickets actually has the tickets in their hand. However, tickets are able to be collected tomorrow, so I’d bookmark this page to ensure that you’re always checking. In previous years, a Hawthorn supporter tells me they’ve had success with finding tickets on Gumtree. This is likely a viable option from September 26 onward.
If you’d like, you can put up a listing requesting tickets for whatever exorbitant price you think you can justify, but be wary that there are already about 100 such requests and the biggest of them is looking for 2 tickets for $5000.
Just keep in mind that a Category 1 ticket to the Grand Final only costs $410, so if you’re willing to go over and above and dish out big dollars for your team, then perhaps you’ll get lucky but you’ll also be eating rice and beans for a month.
I won’t judge you.
Not only are people trying to find tickets on Gumtree, but flights from Adelaide to Melbourne are being sold at exorbitant prices too. Keep an eye out for deals that look too good to be true, because they definitely are. It's also worth checking sites like eBay and Craigslist for any potential leads. If you jag one, just make sure it's legitimate!
Outside the MCG
Of course, you could just turn up to the MCG on Saturday morning, holding a handwritten sign that says “NEED A TICKET” and hope that someone is willing to offload to you. This is a tried and true, last-ditch, ultra-desperation method that has proven to work in the past. That same Hawthorn supporter who got tickets from Gumtree also dropped his brother out the front with a sign one year and ended up inside the 'G for another Hawthorn premiership.
On the day, there are likely to be a few people floating around with tickets in hand, so you could take a stack of cash and hope for the best. It's a risk, I'll admit, but with the calibre of teams playing in this year's Grand Final, I guarantee there will be hundreds of people floating around the MCG willing to part with their money.
One thing to be wary of is the rules and regulations set by Ticketek, the company which provides access to AFL Grand Final tickets. Buying a ticket from an unauthorised reseller above face value is in breach of Ticketek's Terms and Conditions of Sale. If the ticket you have bought is deemed to be in breach of Ticketek Terms and Conditions of Sale, then there is a chance that ticket is cancelled without a refund. That means you could be forking out for a dud ticket, get to the gates at the MCG and be denied entry. A truly horrible fate.
However, Ticketek also state that "if you can't attend an event for legitimate reasons and want to sell your ticket via an online auction site, Ticketek will not object to your sale as long as the selling/offer price is no more than the face value of the ticket."