Nottingham’s nightlife is great, but it’s ruined by the ticket stress

It’s not normal to plan for nights out nine months in advance


Tickets for the Crisis Halloween all-nighter went on sale last Friday at 1pm. No doubt you were at your laptop at 12:50pm primed and ready to get one. No doubt you were refreshing the page incessantly for the next 10 minutes, and as soon as the minute turned from 12:59pm to 1pm you were going be the first in queue, right?

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Wrong. In classic Nottingham fashion, the demand for tickets was so high that the website crashed after being physically incapable of handling the pressure. The tickets were pulled and re-released at 4pm; meaning that unless you were lucky, you went away empty handed or with a down-right disappointing 9:30pm or 1:30am ticket.

Don’t get me wrong, for a small city Nottingham’s nightlife is superb and certainly overshoots for its size. However, the ticket madness that consumes nights like Crisis and Ocean makes the desire to go out unnecessarily stressful, and casts a shadow over the city’s clubbing credentials.

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So precious, so elusive

Want to go to Ocean in two weeks time? How about three weeks? Too bad, all tickets are sold out. What about December 16th? January 27th? June 9th or June 23rd? You can’t. Tickets for these big Ocean nights were gone before we even started term. This essentially means that you have to be more organised with acquiring your Ocean tickets than you do with starting your dissertation research; unless you want to face paying extortionate prices on Buy and Sell, or queues that are hours long.

It is quite possibly Nottingham’s unique Buy/Sell page that is responsible for the issues that tickets cause. Call them scammers or call them entrepreneurs, but it is clear that some individuals over-buy on tickets just to then resell them for profit. This means there are less tickets available for those who actually want to go, and makes the experience of clubbing in Nottingham unnecessarily shitter than it should be.

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People will sell their cars for Ocean tickets…

Things get worse if you compare Nottingham with other big universities. Lara, a second year History student at the University of Leeds, told The Tab: “I find Nottingham’s clubbing system a tad bizarre. I came to visit my friend last year and we were in the Ocean queue before 9pm. In Leeds we normally don’t go out until midnight so it was a bit of a shock.”

Ultimately, clubbing in Nottingham is still great – and the stress for tickets doesn’t negate this fact. Yes, having the autonomy to spontaneously decide to visit Ocean or Crisis on a whim would be wonderful, but it is a dream that will never materialise whilst Nottingham’s nightlife so endlessly relies on the circulation of tickets.