In case you missed my story online yesterday or in the print edition of the Post this morning, the Washington Redskins are among the majority of NFL teams that haven’t altered their ticket policies despite the uncertainty created by the league’s ongoing labor dispute.
The Redskins offered ticket holders a few different payment options for general admission seats. The first was payment in full by Feb. 18 with the incentive of free tickets toa Kenny Chesney concert in June, the FC Barcelona-Manchester United soccer match in July, or the Maryland-Notre Dame football game in November. The second was payment in three installments, due March 1, April 1 and May 1. The team has promised either a full refund for any games missed because of the lockout, or credit toward 2012 season tickets.
The Redskins, and most other NFL teams, differ from the New York Giants, New York Jets, Buffalo Bills and Carolina Panthers, who in varying degrees (as you can see in the story) have given fans more time to pay for tickets, delaying final payments until the dispute is resolved. All of those teams did require payment for personal seat licenses (PSL) earlier this year.
Some Washington fans are unhappy they have to pay in full by this spring, but Redskins officials argue that they don’t have much choice, according to Redskins senior vice president Tony Wyllie, who asked this morning for the opportunity to further explain the Redskins’ policy.
“We have to know who is [purchasing tickets] so that we can do the auto upgrade,” Wyllie said, referring to fans who receive better seats because others ahead of them chose not to renew. “We ship tickets in July, which means we print in June, which means we have to start auto upgrade in April. Unlike teams with money collected in PSLs, who already have almost all of the fans’ money, we need to know who is coming back and seat preferences, and we can’t wait until June or July.”
To make it up to fans for having to pay now despite the uncertainty, Wyllie says the Redskins chose not to raise season ticket prices and “we gave away tens of thousands of free Chesney, Notre Dame and Manchester United-FC Barcelona tickets just for paying” for Redskins tickets now.