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Trying to buy Welsh Varsity tickets was actual carnage: Here’s all the drama that went down

‘It was the most stressful 20 minutes of my life’


The first day of March not only marked St David’s Day in Wales but also the much anticipated general release of Welsh Varsity tickets.

As thousands of students waited eagerly on Cardiff University’s Students’ Union website at 12pm to secure tickets to the event of the year, little did they know that the site would freeze and rugby tickets would be gone within half an hour.

There was much anticipation for the sale as 2023 marks the first year Cardiff has held the Varsity since 2019 due to Covid-19 cancellations.

Due to the site being overloaded with people trying to buy tickets, many were unable to purchase entry to the rugby. It was well and truly carnage.

A number of Cardiff students spoke to The Cardiff Tab to vent about “the shambles” of the ticket release.

One student, Evie told us: “My boyfriend signed into the website about a minute before me and got [a rugby ticket] but I couldn’t get one”.

Another said: “I actually felt like I was in the queue for Chris Brown tickets but no, I’m paying £35 to wake up in the morning smelling of VKs and regret.”

Sophie, a third year student explained that even though she got pre-sale tickets due to being a member of the Athletics’ Union (AU), it still took her around 40 minutes to secure a ticket after constantly refreshing the page.

She also added: “I was hitting that ticket refresh button so much I thought I was going to have to go to hospital for finger realignment surgery.”

Other students added that not only did the site continuously freeze but when they would refresh the page, the site would crash, leading them to feel stressed and concerned that they wouldn’t be able to access tickets. Furthermore, some students also mentioned that because you could only buy one ticket, they were worried that their friends would get tickets, but they would be the only one that wouldn’t.

Two types of tickets were made available by the Students’ Union: the Welsh Varsity Festival Package + Rugby and the Welsh Varsity Festival Package.

Both tickets include entry to daytime sporting events including cricket, swimming, and netball. They also include a limited-edition Welsh Varsity T-shirt.

The only difference between the tickets, is that the Welsh Varsity Festival Package + Rugby tickets include entry to both the men’s and women’s evening rugby games, arguably the biggest events of the Varsity.

Those who buy either of the tickets will be able to buy a Varsity YOLO after-party ticket but these are only available to Varsity ticket holders.

According to Cardiff University’s Students’ Union’s socials, over 2,000 tickets were sold in the first 20 minutes and the rugby tickets completely sold out soon after. However, they have advertised that the standard Welsh Varsity Festival Package tickets are still available to purchase.

Feature Image Credit: Cardiff University’s Students’ Union

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