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Digital ease of passage at turnstiles

By Sean Whetstone

It was my first home game of the season at the London Stadium having been in Spain for the first two games of the Premier League season.

It was also my first use of the digital season ticket on my mobile phone for myself and my son.

Armed with QR codes in our iPhone virtual wallets we turned up an hour early before kick off at Turnstile C dreading queues and technical glitches we had too much about.

We need not have worried as there was no queue at Turnstile not the ten or more other turnstiles we walked past just before 1pm.

Outside our turnstile was a familiar face of West Ham’s head of ticketing Nicola Keye ready to help supporters with any problems.

My son and I placed our iPhones face up on the readers and our QR codes worked first time without any fuss.

Although I had my vaccination passport in my smartphone wallet too we were not asked to show this and I have yet to find a supporter who has been asked to prove their COVID vaccination status or show a negative test result.

I understand there were queues at turnstiles for those who turned up later closer to kick off time and people who printed off their tickets and got their tickets wet in the rain also had some issues with barcodes smudging inkjet printed print outs.

Let us know your experiences with the new digital season ticket system with what time you got there.

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About Sean Whetstone

I am Season Ticket Holder in West stand lower at the London Stadium and before that, I used to stand in the Sir Trevor Brooking Lower Row R seat 159 in the Boleyn Ground and in the Eighties I stood on the terraces of the old South Bank. I am a presenter on the West Ham Podcast called MooreThanJustaPodcast.co.uk. A Blogger on WestHamTillIdie.com a member of the West Ham Supporters Advisory Board (SAB), Founder of a Youtube channel called Mr West Ham Football at http://www.youtube.com/MrWestHamFootball, I am also the associate editor here at Claret and Hugh. Life Long singer of bubbles! Come on you Irons! Follow me at @Westhamfootball on twitter

2 comments on “Digital ease of passage at turnstiles

  1. I’ve had the same experience. I’m not that tech savvy but I’ve found it very easy since day one. I have an iPhone and use apple wallet on it In there is my ticket and my covid passport. Haven’t had to show the covid passport vaccination status thing, but very easy to stick phone into reader at turnsole and straight through with no hassle. Not seen any queues because I always turn up at least an hour before the game. It’s probably the people who turn up late from the pub and try and get in last minute that have the problems.

  2. Before answering the question posed perhaps worth taking a step back on the ticketing issue and consider the old adage “if it aint broken why fix it”.
    The card system seemed to work rather well since the move to the LS & before that at Upton Park..
    So why the change ?
    Possible reasons (in no particular order)
    -COST : may well be cheaper not to have to prepare & send out the cards ? Can’t see that it that expensive £1-2 each ? ST holders could have their choice when renewing & pay ?
    – ELIMINATE ST ABUSE: this would be ST sharing. I’m not 100% clear on WH’s policy ( have read some other clubs do’t have an issue with it – L’Pool & Man U ?).
    Met a guy a pub after the CP match who asked how I found the “new” ticketing. I gave a few comments & he said you pass on tickets through system as long as the recipient has a WH a/c to receive it albeit with a small charge, Not sure how correct this is but monies involved seem smallish.He told me he worked for WH in ticketing.
    COVID: As track & trace runs down & potential Covid passports or -ve test is required ( though this seems less likely unless an other upsurge in cases ) doesn’t seem too relevant to know exactly who was in the stadium.
    -SECURITY: at the moment nothing seems clear on the ticketing going forward though there was talk of an accompanying picture both for the digital and “paper” ticket. Not sure of the reasoning behind this ( or whether other clubs are doing it ) ” possible reasons would be ST “abuse” mentioned above or to assist in identifying trouble makers – of whatever kind- by matching ST pictures to CCTV. That of course raises an issues about passing on ST’s formally or informally plus a few other issues.
    -MAKING IT EASIER FOR SUPPORTERS: Given the previous system worked rather well not sure how true this. Don’t seem to remember an clamour for digital tickets in the smartphone wallet.

    Maybe others can see some clear benefits ?
    Declaration of interest: Part of a group of 8 ST holders of which 2 kids, & 3 seniors.
    I have an old smartphone which doesn’t cater for a wallet. Have noticed the younger members play safe & bring both phone & paper just in case.

    As for the original question: we got there very early for the first 2 matches but this time wit the rain it was c1.20pm & queues certainly much longer than before. Probably 15 minutes to get in but some lines did slow down when there was a problem & seemed more an issue with the digital pass than the paper ( now that folks have learned to fold them !) Not sure what % split between digital & paper is but would guess 60:40

    Sean perhaps if you know Nicola Keye you could do an interview with her to ascertain what are they trying to achieve & where is it going ?

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