CrossFit's solution was to refund all convenience fees ... and waive convenience fees through the end of April.
Seats for the 2012 Reebok CrossFit Games went on sale 10 a.m. Tuesday. Unfortunately, fans who waited anxiously to pick up ticket packages were met with a frustrating obstacle. After leaving the Games website, they landed on the Home Depot Center’s ticketing page, which did not support many popular web browsers, and credit card transactions were not possible for several hours.
The Home Depot Center is owned by AEG, and manages all ticket sales for events it hosts. It used Ticketmaster in the past and recently switched to AXS.com for ticketing needs. The Games are the first event to use AXS.com for three-day passes at the facility, and the system was not fully prepared to handle the event.
“We have counted on the HDC for ticket sales in 2010 and 2011, and had no issues,” says Justin Bergh, Co-Director of the Games. “Our community is great at bringing problems to the forefront. Minutes after we went on sale, we knew we had a major problem.”
The issues with the website didn’t stop hundreds of CrossFitters from getting their hands on tickets right out of the gates. Many jumped through hoops, and even called AXS.com directly to secure their tickets over the phone. VIP passes, which were handled by CrossFit, had no issues at launch and nearly sold out on the first day.
“We were on the phone with the HDC from the beginning, and the top priority was to get the system fixed,” Bergh says. “We fully expect a packed house this year, and there was no way we were going to let a website issue hurt someone who was at the front of the line.”
Bergh says fixing the immediate problem wasn’t the only step CrossFit took. “As soon as they were able to get the ticketing to work, the next issue was how they were going to make this right for the people that had to go through all the trouble,” he says.
CrossFit’s solution was for the HDC to refund all convenience fees to anyone who purchased tickets through AXS.com or over the phone. The HDC willingly agreed. The HDC will also waive any convenience fees for any Games tickets sold through the end of the April.
For the 3,000-plus fans who paid a convenience fee, they will be sent an email with the refund details. Since 6:50 p.m. Wednesday, the convenience fees have been removed from the site.