Ticket sales exceed quarter-million mark

More than 250,000 tickets for the FIFA U-20 World Cup Colombia 2011 have now been sold. The 52-match tournament, which is the biggest sporting event in the country’s history, kicks off in a little under three months' time.

Tickets have sold well since becoming available to the public on 1 December 2010, proof that Colombia lives and breathes the game. In the first two phases of the marketing plan, in which the public could buy blocks of tickets to watch every game in a particular host city, some 180,000 tickets were sold.

The third and final phase of the plan began on 27 April, the date of the Official Draw for Colombia 2011, held in Cartagena, with tickets for individual games going on sale. Such has been the response from fans across the country in the two weeks since then that sales have jumped past the quarter-million mark.

A genuine hotbed of football, Colombia is hoping to set a new attendance record for the FIFA U-20 World Cup and sell the 12 millionth ticket in the 34-year history of the competition.

Some 44 per cent of the tickets sold to date have been purchased through the national network of ticket outlets, with 24 per cent bought over the telephone, 19 per cent via the internet and the remaining 13 per cent through the group-booking system.

In the first 12 days of this final phase ticket sales were open exclusively to customers of Visa, an Official Partner of FIFA, and so far holders of Visa debit and credit cards have accounted for 80 per cent of all sales. From 10 May, however, individual tickets can be bought using any of the authorised forms of payment.