Equestrian queue pain might turn to big gain

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 30 July, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 30 July, 2008, 12:00am

Hundreds queued to buy Olympic equestrian event tickets yesterday - not for entry to the venues at Sha Tin and Beas River but mostly to resell them.

About 500 people queued at Macpherson Playground near the Mong Kok branch of the China Travel Service.

Leung Hang Seng, the first to buy tickets, began queuing at 2.30pm on Monday, and said he would resell the two tickets he had bought to his friend, earning HK$100. The cleaner, who earns HK$120 a day, said the profit he made from the sale would help to relieve his economic burden.

Three Form Four students said they would resell two of the 11 tickets they had bought.

'We were going to buy tickets anyway, so we are just earning money in a convenient way,' said Yumi Au Hiu-lan.

Her classmate, Bonnie Melissa Wong, said they would resell the tickets through the internet and make some money to buy textbooks.

Chun Muk-yan, 65, who was 99th in line and started queuing at 6.50pm on Monday, said a man had approached him and offered him HK$1,250 to buy his pass, which allows him to buy up to 27 tickets.

'It was torture for me to queue,' Mr Chun said. 'Of course, I won't sell it [the pass],' he said after buying 21 tickets for nine events.

About 20 sellers posted their tickets for resale on Hong Kong's Yahoo and eBay sites, asking for double the original price on average. One seller was asking HK$400 for a HK$114 ticket, but only one bid was placed.

The queue was cleared by 6pm at the Mong Kok branch of the China Travel Service, with few tickets left for the four most popular sessions - the finals and medal ceremonies.

A total of 14,000 tickets for 13 sessions held between August 9 and 21, with prices ranging from HK$58 to HK$544, went on sale yesterday.

Yesterday's queuing frenzy came hot on the heels of queues at Bank of China branches for commemorative Olympic banknotes, which many promptly resold to make a profit.

Resale value

Many Hongkongers queueing for Olympic equestrian event tickets are looking for a profit

Price offered to queueing man for his purchase pass, in HK$: $1,250