Wine On Water – all tickets are sold out.
There was an incredible surge of ticket sales, with a total allotment of 1,000 tickets sold out within 59 minutes on Wednesday, 19th October.
A few people were questioning possible bulk buying around these somewhat unbelievable ticket sales, so we dived deep to get to the bottom of this.
The first stop was Quicket, where we got our hands on the sales audit. In this audit, the biggest single sale was 12 tickets from an ordinary-looking email account. No limit had been set on the ticket sales, but the average ticket sales per customer were 4,8 tickets.
We asked Craig Northwood, the Wine On Water event team leader, to explain why the tickets were sold on Quicket and what controls the team had.
“Due to the incredible demand for tickets, we were concerned that opportunists would attempt to sell tickets they purport to have to the public,” said Northwood.
“We have noted this on social media and have encouraged ticket holders who want to refund tickets purchased to do so on Quicket. These can then be sold legitimately. We have already seen one opportunist on social media purporting to have tickets, whereas the Quicket database does not have that person’s name
listed. We ask members of the public to be careful when purchasing WOW tickets from strangers, as Rotary cannot honour fraudulent tickets purchased.”
We continued our enlightening conversation with Mr Northwood.
SFT: 1,000 tickets sold out in less than an hour. What were you expecting? A few days of ticket sales? A few hours?
CN: After the fantastic public response to WOW 2022, I expected tickets to sell out in a day or two. I was flabbergasted when tickets sold out in less than an hour.
SFT: Quite a few locals didn’t get the tickets they hoped for. I think we were all taken a bit by surprise. Is Quicket, in your opinion, the fairest way of selling tickets?
CN: From the numerous enquiries received before the launch of ticket sales, the WOW team expected that ticket sales would be brisk. In fact, we were confident that we could have sold all the tickets out of hand. But being mindful of one of the pillars of the Rotary Four-way Test, namely “Is it fair to all concerned” and not wanting to face undue criticism, we channelled ticket sales through Quicket. We also advertised widely to ensure the public had an equal opportunity to purchase tickets.
SFT: Wine On Water is a Rotary project, and many staff are volunteers. The basic sum of R600 x 1,000 = a fantastic amount of money for charity. Who are the primary recipients?
CN: The Rotary Club of St Francis supports many worthy causes in the greater St Francis area, including Disney Creche, Talhado Children’s Haven Montessori Pre-school, Hospice, NSRI, FOSTER, Krom Enviro Trust, St Francis Clinic (our lead project at present), St Francis Animal Rescue, Tharros Centre Child and Youth Care Centre, St Francis Primary School. Monies raised will be allocated where they serve the greatest need.
SFT: Are there any differences from last year’s setup? Any significant changes in the system? Improvements?
CN: WOW 2022, our first event, met our expectations/objective in terms of being seen as a well-organised iconic event that provided an excellent experience for ticketholders and, at the same time, raised significant funds for the many projects that Rotary have. No significant changes were made to the format.
SFT: With this sort of unprecedented interest and buy-in from everyone, where do you see this event going in the next few years?
Rotary want to nurture this event in future years to become an annual iconic event on the St Francis events calendar.
It would be remiss of me not to acknowledge the support and contribution of Investec who have continued with their generous sponsorship of WOW 2023. We would also like to thank St Francis Tourism for their ongoing support.