4 Dec 2009

Rugby World Cup final ticket to cost up to $1250

4:00 pm on 4 December 2009

Organisers of the 2011 Rugby World Cup say ticket prices reflect the number of fans chasing a limited number of seats.

Tickets for the final at Eden Park in Auckland will cost between $390 and $1250, it was announced on Friday. That's $55 more, on average, than tickets for the last final, in 2007.

All Blacks fans will have to pay nearly twice as much for tickets as those following some other teams through pool play.

Fans who want to follow New Zealand through all four pool matches will pay between $430 and $1400. Supporting South Africa in their equivalent matches will cost between $240 and $715.

Chief executive defends pricing

The chief executive of Rugby World Cup 2011, Martin Snedden, told Morning Report the prices are a matter of supply and demand.

"The reality is, there'll be more people interested in following the All Blacks and demand for that will be higher," he says.

He points out that 10,000 of the seats for the final will be available at $390, and long-term payment plans will also make tickets more accessible. Fans will be able to pay for tickets on instalment over six months.

Giant screens will be set up so others can watch the games and all major matches will be broadcast live on free-to-air television.

An events promoter, Ian Magan of Pacific Entertainment, says the prices are realistic, and there will be plenty of takers. Tickets go on sale in April 2010.

$120 for first ABs match: it was $8 in 1987

The lowest price for pool matches is $30 for adults and $15 for children. The cheapest seats at an All Blacks match - $60 for adults - are for the pool match against an Asian qualifier in Hamilton.

The opening match in which the All Blacks play Tonga will set fans back a minimum of $120.

At the corresponding match in the 1987 Rugby World Cup, when New Zealand played Italy, fans paid $8 to watch from the Eden Park terraces - that's equivalent to $14.62 today, according to the Reserve Bank's inflation calculator.

Trade Me on guard for scalpers

The online auction site Trade Me says it will seek further talks with the tournament organisers to help prevent people from selling unwanted match tickets for more than face value.

Scalpers face a fine of $5000 under a new law, the Major Events Management Act.

Trade Me trust and safety manager Chris Budge says there's a possibility tickets could be listed as classified advertisements with set prices, incorporating booking fees and courier charges.