Paris, France: In a recent exchange of remarks between Sebastian Coe, president of World Athletics, and Tony Estanguet, president of the Paris 2024 organizing committee, the issue of ticket prices for the upcoming Olympics has taken centre stage.
Coe expressed concerns that the high cost of tickets could exclude genuine fans and result in empty seats at the Stade de France, prompting Estanguet to defend the pricing structure.
On Monday, Lord Coe raised the alarm over the affordability of tickets for athletics finals at the Paris 2024 Olympics.
He cautioned that the high prices, reaching up to €990 (£850) for Category First seats, could potentially lead to a lack of spectator turnout and create empty stands at the prestigious event.
Coe’s comments were particularly noteworthy as he previously served as the head of the London 2012 organizing committee.
In a rebuttal on Wednesday, Tony Estanguet, president of the Paris 2024 organizing committee, countered Coe’s remarks by asserting that the ticket prices for the upcoming Olympics are, in fact, lower than those at the London 2012 Games.
Estanguet emphasized that a significant portion of the budget is derived from ticket sales, necessitating a range of prices, including the higher end, to support the event financially.
Estanguet stated, “For athletics, the finals start at €85, but there are also more expensive tickets at €980.” He compared these prices to those in London and Tokyo, asserting that Paris 2024 is within a similar price range.
He pointed out that the starting price in London was £20, which, adjusted for inflation, equates to around €27, while the maximum price was £725, equivalent to just over €1,000 today.
Defending the pricing structure, Estanguet highlighted the aim to include as many people as possible in the Olympic experience. He stated, “From the outset, I’ve wanted the stadiums to be full; I’ve wanted it to be a great celebration.”
The range of ticket prices, from €85 to €980, is designed to cater to various budgets and ensure broad accessibility to the sporting spectacle.
Estanguet’s comparison to the pricing of previous editions in London and Tokyo aims to contextualize the cost of attending the Olympics in Paris.
The acknowledgement that prices are slightly higher than those charged in 2012 reflects the economic realities of staging such a global event and the need to balance financial sustainability with fan inclusivity.
As the Paris 2024 Olympics approach, the debate over ticket prices underscores the challenges of hosting a mega-event that appeals to a diverse audience while covering substantial costs.
The exchange between Coe and Estanguet brings attention to the delicate balance organizers must strike between ensuring financial viability and making the Games accessible to fans from various economic backgrounds.
In the coming months, the success of this balancing act will become evident as spectators from around the world eagerly anticipate the start of the Paris 2024 Olympics.
This article was created using automation technology and was thoroughly edited and fact-checked by one of our editorial staff members