Eurovision finale first-round tickets sell in hours

Seats to semi-finals and rehearsals still remain as complaints about ticket site pour in.

An artistic projection of the 2019 Eurovision stage in Tel Aviv (photo credit: KAN)
An artistic projection of the 2019 Eurovision stage in Tel Aviv
(photo credit: KAN)
The first round of tickets for the Eurovision grand finale in Tel Aviv sold out in less that two hours on Thursday evening.
But tickets to the semi-final events and rehearsals for all three shows were still available in abundance by Friday morning.
After considerable delays, the KAN public broadcaster announced Thursday morning that ticket sales would begin that evening at 8 p.m. local time, via Tickets were sold to nine separate events during the week of the Eurovision: the three live shows on May 14, 16 and 18, and two rehearsals for each of those shows.
KAN said Thursday that a second round of tickets for all nine shows will be made available in April.
The Israeli public broadcaster said Thursday evening that 180,000 people got in line on the Leaan website to buy tickets. But many must have either abandoned the process or turned down the available options.
In a little over an hour, tickets in the first round to the live grand finale on May 18 sold out. But as of Friday morning, tickets to the two live semi-finals as well as all the rehearsals and "VIP green room" seats for all three live shows were still available.
Only approximately 4,300 seats for all of the shows will be sold to the public - and only a portion of those were made available last night. KAN's attempt to add extra seating with its VIP green room - the most expensive option - did not appear to be popular. Plenty of NIS 2,000 tickets for the grand finale green room - where fans will watch on screens alongside the other contestants - were still available Friday morning. Many of the green room tickets to the live semi-finals were practically untouched more than 12 hours after tickets were made available.
Many fans took to social media on Thursday evening to complain about problems with the ticket purchasing site. Among complaints about the long wait time and the high prices were also claims that the site wouldn't allow fans to complete their purchases.
In response, KAN said its “social team is reading and passing on all of your comments regarding issues with the ticketing systems.”
Many fans expressed ire last week when the high prices of the Eurovision tickets were released. Overall, tickets ranged in price from NIS 300 for a semi-finals rehearsal, to NIS 2,000 for a spot in the VIP green room during the grand finale on May 18. The cheapest ticket for the live grand finale is NIS 1,150, and seats are also available for NIS 1,500 and NIS 1,700. Tickets for the live semi-finals cost NIS 750-NIS 1,250, while tickets for the semi-final rehearsals range from NIS 300-NIS 1,000.
Already by Thursday afternoon, the Leaan site was flooded with visitors, hours before tickets were available for sale. Some users were made to wait online just to enter the website. Leaan told eager fans that “we recommend opening this page 15 minutes before sales open, to make sure you get a spot in line. Attention: Eurovision tickets are high in demand, which means we can’t promise that tickets will still be available when your turn arrives.”
But as on Friday morning, plenty of tickets remain - just not to the live grand finale.