the disappointment of Parisians with the “exorbitant” prices of tickets for the Olympic Games

TESTIMONIALS Proud that their city of birth or adoption has been chosen to host the Olympic Games in 2024, they feel excluded from the celebration.

A simply unattainable dream. “Paying for men’s judo semi-final places at 360 euros or women’s at 245 euros, it’s just impossible for me financially“, laments Matthieu, 33, who nevertheless had “planned a budget» dedicated to the Olympic Games. “We are no longer in the order of reason when we do not intend to attend the Olympics alone, many families cannot afford it“, he continues, preferring to dedicate this envelope “vacations or other less expensive hobbies“.

Despite very strong enthusiasm for the second phase of ticket sales for the Olympic Games Paris 2024 which opened on May 11, many Parisians have nevertheless expressed their disappointment with the ticket prices which they consider too high. Some have even given up on affording themselves the luxury of attending this planetary event which they were nevertheless happy to welcome, while others will be content with the so-called “minor“.

“No more tickets available”

Among the most disappointed of them, Lou, who works in Paris and lives in Seine-Saint-Denis. Every year, she religiously attends the Roland Garros tournament and hoped “to be able to buy a ticket for tennis» within the framework of the Olympic Games. “One of my dreams was to attend the Olympic Games at Roland Garros and to encourage the French in this atmosphere. But during my draw, there were no more tickets available for tennis, and the prices of the remaining tickets for swimming that I also wanted to buy put me off immediately “Explains the 30-year-old, referring to prices ranging from 680 euros for the swimming events”less unifyingat 980 euros for a final event.

Saying “very disapointed“, the young woman also protests the price of the opening ceremony in category A at 2700 euros: “I understand that the JO brand makes money, but there are limits, especially for a ceremony that aims to be popular and accessible to all.“. And to launch:It’s a shame because the idea of ​​the procession on the Seine is incredible“. For her, there is no doubt, the organizers are still saving a lot of tickets “that they will put on sale a few weeks before “.

Same observation for Cédric, from Hauts-de-Seine, who had the pleasant surprise of being drawn for the two sales phases, but who ultimately bought nothing. “I was drawn twice, but never in the first slots. As a result, I no longer had access to places that interested me or only at exorbitant prices.s”, he testifies, recalling that in addition during the first phase of sale, “you had to buy a pack of at least 3 tickets“. “It’s simple, either I went to see sailing in Marseille for 24 euros, or I took tickets for athletics at the Stade de France for 385 euros. So 770 euros to go there for two“, he laments.

Others were even less lucky and were simply not drawn, neither in the first phase which opened on February 15, nor in the second phase which opened on May 11. last. For Charlotte, a 24-year-old student, the disappointment is already far behind her. “I consoled myself by seeing that many on social networks were complaining about the price of tickets, but I’m not giving up.“, advances the one who has planned to “catch up“on the third and final phase of sales which is to open”during 2024and who will beaccessible to all, without drawing lots, with tickets added over time“, according to the organizers of Paris.

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Second choice and system D

Among the disappointed, there are also those who managed to buy tickets, but not for their favorite sports. This is particularly the case of Maxime, a 30-year-old Parisian, who explains that he obtained second-choice places for the Olympics “in minor sports like field hockey“. “I couldn’t get any for major sports or opening ceremonies (July 26, editor’s note) or closing (August 11, editor’s note) which were my goal. As a big sports fan, I’m bound to be disappointed “, he says.

This is also the case for Tanguy, 36, who bought tickets to see the women’s rugby sevens quarter-finals, at 140 euros for two places at the Stade de France. A price quite suitable according to him, but which does not really correspond to his tastes. “I live in the heart of downtown Paris, I had rather imagined being able to go to the opening ceremony on the Seine, or attend the athletics events at the Invalides or fencing at the Grand Palais», «emblematic monuments of the city“according to him, but”out of the question to leave a minimum wage there», advances the one who relativizes by telling himself that he will put to rent your apartment on Airbnb.

Others prefer to laugh at it, imagining subterfuge to attend the opening ceremony all the same, from the balconies of the buildings which adjoin the Seine in particular. “I regularly have meetings in offices overlooking the Seine on the Quai de la Râpée, I tell myself that they will no doubt invite their clientshopes Jean, 43, half serious, dreaming of spending the evening of July 26 on a barge of a “completely imaginary friend“. But beware of the constraints: a certain number of them will be moved, while a very strict control will be operated for the other residential boats, on which only owners and guests previously declared in the prefecture will have access, specify the organizers.

“The ransom of success”

Asked about ticket prices by several deputies, the Minister of Sports and the Olympic and Paralympic Games Amélie Oudéa-Castéra defended herself on Tuesday before the National embly, calling the tests “exceptional momentsfor which the prices displayed were below the average practiced for this type of event. “We only have 10% of the m of tickets that are higher than 200 euros (…) These prices are completely in line with the prices during previous editions of the Games“, she ured. Before stating:Taking inflation into account, prices are lower than in previous editions“.

But it’s not just Parisians who would have liked to take advantage of this exceptional event. Pascal, 49, from Vendée and unconditional sports fan, is one of the disappointed. He participated in the London Olympics in 2012 and remembers that the tickets were indeed expensive. But a pre-registration system allowed you to check off the events you wanted to attend.depending on prices“. On site, accompanied by his relatives, he was also able to afford other tickets sold “at the last minute“. For Paris, he did not take the plunge. “We are obviously very, very disappointed, we had a lot of fun in London, and we thought that the day the Games would be in France, we would jump at the chance, but I see the positive side, that’s the ransom of success. The more we are, the less there is space“, he relativizes.

While waiting to find out if he will be able to offer his relatives places for the Paris Olympics, possibly at the very last moment, the latter did not hesitate to register to be one of the 45,000 volunteers for the event. Today, he is one of 300,000 interested people who have officially signed up to become one of them. And if he has no urance for the moment that this plan B works, Pascal says he is already ready to participate in the Olympics on the other side of the mirror. And yet, one of the conditions is far from trivial: to be available for at least 10 days in a row during the summer of 2024.

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