NEWS

2004 tickets for most pockets

Tickets for the Athens 2004 Olympics will range from 10 to 950 euros, organizers announced yesterday, while most people will be able to attend events at a maximum cost of 30 euros. And in their bid to raise some 183 million euros from ticket sales, Athens 2004 officials will not be issuing a single free invitation. Even should certain events have low attendance, nobody will be let in without paying – as was the case with the 1997 World Athletics Championships in Athens. Officials said the average ticket price would be 34 percent cheaper than during the 2000 Games in Sydney. «There was a conscious decision to have cheap tickets so that all Greeks can enjoy the Olympics,» Athens 2004 Executive Committee member Marton Simitsek told a press conference. But he conceded later, «We did not say that all Greeks can attend all the events.» Some 68 percent of the total 5.3 million tickets will cost up to 30 euros – of which over half will be priced under 20 euros. The public can apply for tickets as of May 12, 2003, and, when demand exceeds supply, allocation will be determined by lottery.