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This post has been recently updated since tickets for Glastonbury Festival 2020 sold out in 34 minutes! Glastonbury Festival of Contemporary Performing Arts is a world-famous fixture on the British events calendar and, as a result, it sells out incredibly fast. The tickets for Glastonbury in 2019 festival sold out in roughly 36 minutes. That’s 135,000 tickets sold in half an hour. That’s approximately 4,500 tickets being sold per minute, or more than 75 every second.
With that in mind, getting yourself a ticket is not a particularly easy task and takes a certain amount of planning.
Glastonbury sells out every year and once all the tickets are gone, there’s no chance of getting a spare ticket on eBay or buying a spare one as I’m sure you’re aware that the tickets come printed with your photograph, name and address, and you can’t make copies.
By following these tips below you can optimise your ticket buying skills and hopefully increase your chances of getting one of these coveted ‘golden tickets’ 🙂
Glastonbury Tickets 2020 – 50th Anniversary Event
Glastonbury Festival 2020 takes place on 24th – 28th June 2020. Tickets are now sold out. Tickets went on sale at 9am on Sunday 6th October 2019, with coach-only tickets selling out a few days earlier at 6pm on Thursday 3rd October 2019.
You can still try again for tickets in the resale which takes place in April 2020. A certain number of tickets will be released for sale in April after refund have been given to those who can no longer attend.
I’ve updated this article with NEW INFORMATION following the ticket sale in October, I was again successful in securing tickets, but I ran into problems with the website. Keep reading to find out what happened and how I overcame the problems to secure tickets!
STOP! Do not go any further without registering yourself. You have ZERO chance of getting yourself a ticket unless you’re registered. To do this, visit the Glastonbury SeeTickets registration page. If you have registered in the past whether you’ve successfully bought a ticket or not – then your registration will still be valid, you can check your registration using your e-mail address and postcode and even update your details if they’ve changed. Registrations before 2010 are no longer valid and you will need to submit a new registration.
At the SeeTickets registration page, you will need to upload a suitable photograph following the guidelines on the site. It doesn’t need to be a scanned in passport photograph, just take a selfie against a neutral wall or background using your phone. The website lets you rotate and crop the image within the page itself so don’t worry about having to edit it first.
Once you’ve uploaded the photo it goes into the ‘approval queue’ and you will be emailed once it’s been accepted (usually within 24 hours) and you will have your Glastonbury Festival registration!
I know some people who have rather wacky Glastonbury photos with big cheesy grins and the ‘rock on’ symbol with their hands, despite being against SeeTickets’ guidelines their photos were still somehow accepted. However, to avoid any delay it’s a better idea to just take a standard photo. The registration usually closes a few days before the tickets go on sale so do it now! DO IT NOW!
Have your Details Ready
Now that you’ve got your registration sorted you should write this number down and have it ready for ticket day. You can write it on a piece of paper to have next to your keyboard or save it in a blank document on your laptop ready to copy & paste it in when you get through to the booking page (and you will get through!)
It’s also a good idea to sign up for an account with SeeTickets in advance and save your details in there so you can check out faster. Glastonbury tickets are NOT held for you when you’re filling out your address and payment details so you have to be quick.
To make this easier, login to SeeTickets a few days beforehand and make a note of your password (I’m always forgetting things like this!), save your up-to-date billing and delivery addresses and also your Credit/Debit Card* that you’ll be using to pay. Forget frantically typing in your card number on that elusive booking page!
*Before 2016, only debit cards were accepted for tickets purchased within the UK. This has now changed and you can use a credit card to pay for your ticket deposit and balance.
Team up with your Friends
This method MASSIVELY increases your chances of getting through to buy your Glastonbury tickets. You are able to buy up to 6 tickets in one transaction so, if there’s you + 5 friends all there ready and eager on ticket day – make sure you have your notepads to hand with all of your group’s individual registration details written down. Now that’s some good organisation.
If you’re doing this then make sure you get everyone’s registration details well in advance of ticket day and double-check them because the last thing you want is for an error message when you’re on the booking page.
If your group is larger than 6 then consider more than one group depending on how many of you there are. This brings me onto the next point…
Team up with Total Strangers
…or friends you haven’t met yet! If none of your friends are up for the Glastonbury experience then they’re not you’re real friends (I’m joking). If your groups are too large or you want to go solo (and you definitely should) then you can also increase your chances by joining ticket buying groups online. Check out the Glasto Chat or Glasto Gals groups on Facebook (the second one is for those who identify as female) or try the forums on eFestivals.
The same rules apply as above, make sure you have everyone’s correct registration information in advance. One incorrectly entered registration number at booking can mess up the entire booking for everyone.
This whole system works on trust and honesty. Don’t abuse it or be selfish.
Set your Alarm and Prepare for Frustration
The night before General Admission tickets go on sale will be a Saturday night, bear this in mind – will you be out late? Will you be too hungover? How will you make sure you’re awake and on the internet before 9am on Sunday?
Whatever you do – don’t sleep through your alarm. Especially if you’re in a group as that would be very awkward. GET ONLINE BY 08:50am and start refreshing at 08:58am!!!
It’s entirely up to you if you decide to go for the multi-device approach. I personally don’t do this. It’s frustrating enough watching one device give you a holding message, let alone refreshing several just to get the same dreaded message that you too will see. Over and over and over again:
I personally use only ONE device, my phone or tablet and refresh by swiping down on the page over and over again until the booking page loads (and it will!) If you’re using a PC or laptop in case you don’t know, the keyboard shortcut to refresh the page is F5. Glastonbury Festival themselves advise that you don’t have more than one tab open in your browser as this means you may get through and one of your other open tabs in the background will automatically refresh and kick you out entirely! Avoid this!
Prepare your devices
Look, we all have multiple devices these days. Phones, laptops, tablets… be aware that Glastonbury and SeeTickets know that people do this. So, booking attempts are limited per IP address. If you must use multiple devices, connect them to different networks, WiFi, 4G, wired connection, etc.
It’s really common for people to be using 5 or more devices in an attempt to book a single ticket. The more people who do this, the harder it comes for you and everyone else.
I’ve had way more success (and I’ve been successful in buying tickets every year 2014-2020) using just one single device. One tab. One browser. No distractions.
Be Patient and DON’T GIVE UP
The last time I bought my Glastonbury ticket I was keeping an eye on their Twitter feed and Emily Eavis had helpfully tweeted that 50% of the tickets were now gone.
HOW WERE PEOPLE GETTING THROUGH WHEN I’M STILL STARING AT THE SODDING HOLDING PAGE?!
Just be persistent and keep on refreshing – it’s soul-destroying but if you want it enough – it will happen. Once you’re through you only have to pay £50 per ticket (plus the cost of the coach if you’re buying the coach package) and the rest of the balance needs to paid at the beginning of April. Now you can relax. Or celebrate. Or both!
Update for Glastonbury 2020 Ticket Sale Fiasco
Many, many people, myself included noticed the extra strain on the ticket website in October 2019 when trying to buy Glastonbury 2020 tickets. The weather was so glorious in 2019 and the television coverage looked epic enough to entice the nayest of naysayers. There was a lot of extra interest in Glastonbury tickets this year.
As usual, at 9am on Sunday morning, the drama begins.
Personally, I was refreshing the page for over 27 minutes before I got to the bit where you enter registration numbers. After pressing next. I saw this:
As an experienced Glastonbury ticket buyer, I had not seen this before but I knew this wasn’t the end.
After hitting the back button and attempting to submit my registration again, I saw this different message:
It was 09.31am and by this point, I will admit that I thought this was game over for me.
Pressed back again, and re-submitted my details for a third time…
The payment page loaded! It loaded! I’ve never typed in my debit card details so fast and my heart skipped multiple beats before the confirmation page finally appeared:
What to do if this happens to you:
- Stay calm – there’s nothing you can do to change this situation.
- Don’t give up – I’ve just proven that the error messages given are in fact fake news.
- Concentrate on one tab using one device – If you’ve entered you registration details already, that’s part of your session. Don’t confuse matters by opening other browsers, tabs or devices at this stage.
- Use the browser’s back button – press it once to go back to the previous step within your same session to try again.
- Keep trying – keep at it, we’re all on your side!
- At the payment screen – if the screen ‘hangs’ or goes blank, there’s a strong chance your payment went through. Check your online banking
- Check your emails – confirmation emails are emailed anywhere from 5 minutes to several hours after payment goes through. If you made it passed the payment screen before the tickets sold out then you probably have a ticket!
There’s Always Another Chance in April [even if you forgot to register]
If you were unlucky on this occasion then all is not lost. No. You shall go to the ball. Well, the muddy fields full of awesome music, people and entertainment.
Some people pay their £50 deposit in October and something happens between then and April meaning they can no longer go – since selling the tickets is not allowed as they’re personalised with your photo – these tickets go back into the resale for you to snap up. The date of resale varies every year but it is usually about a week after the balance payment deadline.
Keep an eye on the Glastonbury website, eFestivals and social media for news of the date. You can also register with your photo in the meantime if you forgot to register the first time.
There’s Sometimes Another Second Chance in May
That’s right. Glastonbury often sells a very small number of tickets as late as May. This is because some people pay for ticket insurance (this is an option for when you check out – I never bother) and it means that they will refund a portion of your ticket cost if you cancel it before the deadline.
This deadline is in early May and it doesn’t cover the full cost of the ticket, from what I know it only covers about £80 which is why I never bother with the ticket insurance.
However, this small number of refunded tickets are sometimes resold by the festival in so-called “secret sales” – they’re not really a big secret but they take place with very little notice. Again, keep an eye on eFestivals and social media but there is something else that people do to be the first to know about these “secret sales”.
This works by signing up to an online service (at a small cost) that will notify you by email when a change is made to a website, so by signing up to this service and requesting a notification when the Glastonbury Ticket Booking Page makes a change, you’ll be the first to know about the “secret sale” (as well as anyone else who signs up to this service).
I’ve not personally used this and it all sounds very technical but I’ve looked into it and it’s really easy! All you need to do is to type in your e-mail address and the website you want to be notified about. Here you can find a few tools that do just that.
Yeah OK, this is for the very wealthy amongst you. Fly Glastonbury (now Winding Lake) is the company that provides helicopter transport to and from the festival. They also provide luxury accommodation for the festival. They also sell tickets… they sell tickets to people who are staying in their accommodation facilities as they are allocated a certain number of genuine tickets by Glastonbury Festival themselves.
Tickets sold via Fly Glastonbury are only available for those who buy an accommodation package. It’s very expensive.
Get a paid or volunteer role at the festival
Shortly after the tickets sold out for Glastonbury 2020, Oxfan tweeted this:
Just missed out? No sweat… we’ve got another way! ?? You can now register your interest to volunteer with us at @GlastoFest 2020 and help beat poverty. #Glastonbury2020#Glastonbury https://t.co/ncwYNLid1Y pic.twitter.com/tsMfRcuGEm
— Oxfam (@oxfamgb) October 6, 2019
There are also tonnes of other opportunities to work at the festival, Google is your friend!
Have a look at the other festivals happening in the UK next year
Yes, Glastonbury is the original, the biggest and in some aspects – the best – but there are hundreds of other large, medium and smaller sized festivals taking place across the UK and they’re getting more diverse and unique every single year.
If you’ve never been to Boomtown then that is an absolute must for any festival-lover. There are also great communities surrounding Shambala, Greenman, Bestival, Noisily, Kendal Calling and the Isle of Wight Festival. There is probably a festival for everyone’s taste, UK Festival Guide is a pretty comprehensive guide to upcoming festivals of all sizes.
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