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How does the continent compare on ticket prices?

This is a story from the FSF archive – the FSF and SD merged to become the FSA in 2019.

Following yesterday’s story on Liverpool’s season ticket price rise being branded ‘an insult’, Arsenal fanzine writer and blogger Vic Crescit gets his teeth into the issue of ticket prices on the continent. Is the grass really greener on the other side of the channel?

Since the Football Supporters’ Federation kicked off its ticket price campaign there’s been suggestions from some quarters – no names, no pack drill – that prices here in England & Wales aren’t quite as stratospheric as might be supposed in comparison to heavy-hitters elsewhere in Europe. So what’s the truth? Well to quote the Fox News USA slogan, “We report. You decide.”

Let us take two so-called “giants” of the game elsewhere on our sceptered continent – FC Barcelona and FC Bayern Munich. Both clubs have long pedigrees both domestically and internationally. So what are you going to pay for a season ticket at the Camp Nou?

The question isn’t quite as straightforward as you might think. To be a season ticket holder at the Camp Nou you have to be a soci or voting member. Membership costs €150 a season. Once you’re a member you can go on the waiting list for a season ticket. There are two sorts at Barça. The first gets you into the 19 home matches in La Liga. The second gets you into every Barça home match at the Camp Nou – La Liga, Champions League or Europa League, Copa del Rey (Spain’s equivalent of the FA Cup but played over two legs), friendlies – the lot.

What will you pay? There are 17 different price brackets and, including the annual membership fee, prices range from as little as €261.50 (£229) to a maximum of €1,178.50 (£1,030). There are six season ticket price brackets under €500, while only two of the 17 cost more than €800.

So there you have it. For a whole season’s football at the Camp Nou. Plus a vote for the President and board of the club. Plus cheap tickets for world class basketball too, if that floats your boat. Plus access to the club’s members’ sporting facilities. As the slogan goes Mes Que Un Club (More Than Just A Club).

Now let’s turn to Bayern Munich. Bayern are by some distance the biggest fish in the Bundesliga pond. The Bundesliga is – belatedly – getting credit over here for what they get right. One of the things they get very right compared to the Premier League in particular, but also many wannabe clubs in the Football League, is ticket prices at their bright, shiny new Allianz Arena, generally lauded as one of the very best of the new grounds build in recent decades.

Even better they give you the choice to sit or stand as you prefer at domestic games in Germany. How good is that? Here’s what you’ll pay for a season ticket at the Allianz Arena:

Standing: €150 full price, €75 concessions (£131/£66); Category 4 seats: €300, €150 (£262/£131); Category 3 seats: €450, €225 (£393/£197); Category 2 seats: €550, €275 (£481/£240); Category 1 seats: €650, €375 (£568/£284).

That gets you in to all seventeen home Bundesliga games and first dibs on tickets for the Champions League or Europa League or the DFB-Pokal (Germany’s equivalent of the FA Cup).

So next time somebody tells you the grass isn’t greener on ticket prices elsewhere in Europe you know what to tell them.

Thanks to marriuccox for the image reproduced under CC license.

The FSF blog is the space to challenge perceived wisdom, entertain readers and inform our members. The views expressed on this blog are those of the author – they don’t necessarily represent FSF policy and (pay attention journalists) shouldn’t be attributed to the FSF. Have your say below and play nice…

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