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I Didn’t Get Tickets For Eurovision, What Can I Do? Written by on March 7, 2023

Tickets for the Eurovision Song Contest sold out in minutes today, as Liverpool became the hottest ticket in the musical town of 2023. A lucky few thousand will be in the arena, but what about everyone else? Ewan Spence looks at options for UK-based fans to enjoy the Song Contest in the host city and beyond.

It Was Always Going To Be Difficult

First up, let’s talk about the tickets. While the Liverpool Arena can accommodate audiences up to 11,000 (with everyone standing), the Eurovision Song Contest takes up a lot of room for the stage, all of the props needed during the shows, the Green Room, and space for a lot of broadcast equipment. That cuts down the number of tickets to start with.

On top of that, you have other demands on tickets. I don’t think anyone would disagree with the scheme to offer tickets to displaced Ukrainians. Neither would the offer of ticket packages to members of the OGAE Fan Club be seen as anything but proper. Each delegation will need tickets for the live shows. Corporate sponsors no doubt have tickets included in their bundles as well.

I could easily see half of the capacity being allocated before ticket sales opened to the public. That could mean maybe 4,000 to 5,000 tickets per show, with around 40,000 tickets available across the nine events. That is a ridiculously small amount given the demand for tickets to the show, and if you missed out, I know it will hurt, but you are not alone.

Returns And Resellers

It’s likely that tickets will be on sale in the secondary markets and ticket exchanges almost instantly. Some of these will be genuine tickets, purchased no doubt through automated systems designed to buy as many tickets as possible. Others could be working on arbitrage – the principle where you pay now as the customer and get your ticket a week before the show… while behind the scenes the company tries to find a ticket for a price lower than you paid… otherwise you’re getting refunded the cash with a clinical ‘tickets are no longer available’ message.

This isn’t a problem unique to the Eurovision Song Contest. It’s a systemic issue in live event ticketing. If you want to learn more on this subject, I’d recommend Beatseeker Podcast’s interview with Krista Brown in ‘The Fight To Break Up Ticketmaster

Ticketmaster has said there will be no transfer of ownership of the tickets unless it is done through its own resale site; this allows you to sell tickets you have already purchased, through the official system. If you are looking for ‘returns’ on tickets, this is the only place we would recommend.

Some Alternatives In Liverpool

The Eurovision Song Contest community is far larger and far more spread out than the few thousand who make it into the audience for the live TV show broadcast… but that larger community will arrive in Liverpool to enjoy the week of the Contest amongst old friends and new acquaintances, as part of one of the biggest musical families.

And families always have somewhere to gather. For the Eurovision family in the host city, that means the Eurovillage and Euroclub.

OGAE’s EuroClub

Euroclub can vary from Contest to Contest, sometimes being a place just for delegations, others being a full-blown venue open to the public. This year’s Euroclub, at Camp and Furnace, is primarily for members of the OGAE fan club with weekly passes already on sale and sold out. That said some day tickets and weekly passes have been held back and a public sale to take place near the end of march has been discussed.

Liverpool’s EuroVillage

The Eurovillage is open to all, a huge open-air space full of festivities. Typically you’ll find various bars and food trucks, lots of seats and good company, and a stage with a program of events, appearances, and mini-concerts. You’ll also find a huge TV screen, and when the live shows come around you can watch the show in the reported 25,000 capacity space, far more people than those in the Liverpool Arena and with a far better view of the stage.

Traditionally the Eurovillage has been free to enter, and this will be the case for all bar the night of the Grand Final. This year’s Eurovillage will be ticketed for the final night, no doubt to alleviate concerns over capacity and queuing at the venue, with more details to follow.

The Eurovillage is likely going to be the biggest party space in the city.

Everyone Else With A Venue In Liverpool

Let’s face it, the people and the businesses of Liverpool are not going to let the various opportunities offered by the Eurovision Song Contest pass by. While there is a significant program being put in place by the local council, there will be many independent events, parties, gatherings, and opportunities to enjoy the Eurovision experience.

We already have the EuroFansClub. This independent venue provides a similar idea to the EuroClub, which is open to all (although, just like the EuroClub, the weekly pass has sold out but tickets are available for individual nights). Expect theme nights, former Eurovision acts and Liverpool 2023 performers to show up.

There will be more announced as we get closer to May, there will be more on the ground and expect every bar and nightclub to get involved. Even without a ticket to the main show, there will be so much to do in Liverpool… and as we get closer to the big shows, there are going to be more events posted.

Elsewhere In The UK

These events aren’t going to be restricted to Liverpool.

Plans are being made for open-air Eurovillage-styled events across the country. We have our first confirmed airing in Darlington… with the note that the screenings will start the week before with the Royal Coronation. Add in the two midweek Semi Finals and you have a week of programming for this and other events. No doubt more will be announced ahead of May.

Once Liverpool is ‘sold out’ you might even see these cities promoting themselves as alternate destinations for a weekend break with a dash of the Song Contest.

You might not have to go outdoors as well. Quietly around the world, the Eurovision Song Contest has shown up in cinemas as live screening events. This genuinely is a moment to go with ‘check local listings for details’, or even pick up the phone to the cinema and see if they’ll consider running such a screening.

Events aren’t restricted to the United Kingdom as well. The focus here has been on options for those in the UK, but the Song Contest is a global phenomenon with viewing parties, events, screens, and a wide range of activities around the world. No matter where you are, you are far from alone.

Remember, It’s Just A Show

The Eurovision Song Contest is enjoyed by millions of viewers around the world. To be one of five thousand people in the TV studio (no matter how much of an arena it is) is a special moment, but it is just one of many we have. The Song Contest lets you make your own moments, no matter where you are, and you don’t need a ticket to do that.

All you need is the show.

…but if you really want to have that live experience and you didn’t get tickets for Liverpool… as we publish this, the Grand Final for Sweden’s Melodifestivalen still has tickets on sale for around £100. With flights for £125, and a single night’s accommodation for £65 that’s less than the price of the top tier of Grand Final tickets. You might even see the Eurovision winner winning a song contest before winning the Song Contest…

About The Author: Ewan Spence

British Academy (BAFTA) nominated broadcaster and writer Ewan Spence is the voice behind The Unofficial Eurovision Song Contest Podcast and one of the driving forces behind ESC Insight. Having had an online presence since 1994, he is a noted commentator around the intersection of the media, internet, technology, mobility and how it affects us all. Based in Edinburgh, Scotland, his work has appeared on the BBC, The Stage, STV, and The Times. You can follow Ewan on Twitter (@ewan) and Facebook (

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