My night waiting in line for Grand Final tickets – The sequel

It’s that time of year again; the hunt for Grand Final tickets is on. And this year will be harder than ever, with Collingwood making it to the final Saturday in September tickets will be like gold and when your buying tickets for thirteen people, it’s going to be a difficult task.

This has lead to some increased strategies, this year not only will we have somebody waiting in line all night, we will also have four people on ticketek, trying to get tickets before the server inevitably becomes impossible to get on to.

We feel the effects of a Collingwood grand final straight away. At 8pm (13 hours until tickets go on sale) a representative has taken our spot in line. Last year we were fith, tonight we’re eleventh.

At 5 am my shift begins. I find my self on a sidewalk in a deckchair, covered in three layers of jumpers, Richmond beanies and scarves and a blanket over the top. I look around and this years line is longer and filled with crazier characters than last year.

I’ll start from the top.

Number 2 is wearing a Collingwood scarf and says she brought down a portable T.V yesterday to watch while waiting most of yesterday in line.

The number 5’s are a group of teenagers who look like they spend every Sunday night sleeping out here. The group of about six makes more rotations than Collingwood, one waits alone for a few minutes while the others kick a footy, have a smoke and go shopping in 24 hour K-Mart.

Number 10 is two bogan Collingwood supporters. While one sits silently in her camping chair the other is asleep on the ground in what seems to be an unmade tent. Every so often she rolls in her “sleeping bag” and a pole sticking out from it hits me in the shins.

One the other side of me number 12 is almost sleeping on my shoulder. At one stage I forget he’s there, stretch my arms out and knock his head in the process. Luckily, he doesn’t wake.

But possibly the person who attracts the most attention is number 14. For reasons unknown, this lady has decided to bring her dog to line up with her. I don’t really know the dog’s breed and can only describe it as a tiny black fluffy dog, the type that you would expect to see in one of those dog contests.

Number 14 constantly takes her dog on walks, feeds the dog treats and plays with it. I’d love to know when the owner allows the dog to sleep.

Two of the boys that make up number 5 start tapping the dog’s kennel and whistling, trying to get the dog to come out. After about five minutes one of them finally works out that the dog is not in the kennel and is out on one of its many walks. Idiots.

At 8am the newsagent opens. This will be the most stressful half an hour all year for them. One mistake and this line could turn feral very quickly.

At around this time my uncle Geoff joins me in line with everybody’s AFL membership. We’re all set while the others are ready to go on computers. A guy whose probably about number 25 has the same idea as us and has a laptop with him in line.

9 am and tickets have gone on sale. The first person goes through and to everybody’s relief he’s only buying two tickets. We know this won’t last though. I’ve found a lot of people in front will be buying ten or more tickets.

As number 4 goes up to buy his tickets Geoff receives a phone call. Geoff says nothing except for “Right” and “Okay.” Finally he says “Okay, I’m stepping out of line.”

To the bemusement of everybody else we leave the line. “What are you doing” asks the crazy dog lady, we explain we’ve purchased tickets online and they couldn’t have been better, M20 row J.

The lady says “So you waited in line for nothing?” It did seem a bit of a waste. Everybody was up in the middle of the night when we could just go on the internet in the morning. But Geoff has a good response “No, we were the insurance.” And none of it matters when you’ve got fantastic seats to the Grand Final.


  1. Well done Mikey, better than last years!

    Hope you enjoy the Grand Final. This waiting in line for Grand Final tickets sounds fun, I should try it one day.

  2. Nice work Mikey!!! :-) Great read, as always.

    I know what you mean about the bemused looks:

    In 2007, me and mum lined up for HOURS to get premlim tickets, we finally get to first waiting in the queue, and Darren calls to say he got through online.

    In 2009, I got to the local ticket outlet at 7am, again to get prelim tickets. I get to second in line, and mum calls to say she got them online.

    LUCKILY, I dropped by her work and asked to see them, as when she opened up the email, to her horror she realised through a technical glitch she’d gotten tickets to the OTHER prelim! :-O Thankfully, we were still able to get tickets, and sold the other ones to a bunch of Bulldog supporters.

    Hope you enjoy the big ‘un! Barrack hard to get the Pies home! (LOL!)

  3. Mike, that was an epic twist, I didn’t see that coming!

    It would be very ironic if you guys were ninth in the line!

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