World Championship2018

Telegram-bots and method 10 minutes: fans hunt for tickets for the 2018 World Cup

Tickets appear every day for matches, but it is difficult to catch them and this requires nerves.

Photo by Pavel Lisitsyn, RIA Novosti
Contrary to popular belief, tickets for the 2018 FIFA World Cup did not end, but still appear on the FIFA website . However, it is extremely difficult to acquire them because of the opacity and inconvenience of the process. The discontent of Russian fans led to the fact that they began to cooperate in social networks and think up unobvious ways to still get to the World Cup in their own country.

Why tickets still appear, although the demand is huge

FIFA has several times stated about the increased excitement around the World Cup 2018 and reported on the rapid pace of sales. However, the organizers did not once “throw” all the tickets at once, nor did they disclose the number of the remaining tickets and the order of their appearance on the site.

Basically tickets appear on the FIFA website again, as the fans resell them through the official platform (losing 10% of the amount). It is not known how long it takes to process, but obviously they are trying to catch it before the match begins. In addition, FIFA arranged several large “throw-in”, during the last of which distributed more than 120 thousand tickets.

In this case, even at the most feverish matches of the 2018 World Cup often notice empty seats . The most scandalous incident so far was the match between Uruguay and Egypt in Yekaterinburg, to which five thousand people did not come . In social networks, the situation was explained by the activity of resellers, but FIFA named the reason for the non-appearance of “client groups”.

Empty places of the first category on the match Portugal-Spain in Sochi.
Why to buy a ticket for the World Cup is difficult, but possible

The last period of sales of tickets for the World Cup started on April 18 and will end on July 15, the day of the final. The official cost of tickets did not change from the very beginning. To the four general categories, the fifth and cheapest one has recently been added – OV or “limited visibility” – 640 rubles for any match of the group stage.

Now the tickets are sold not by draw, as in some previous stages, but in the order of the first turn. That is, they appear on the site subject to availability.

In an ideal situation, an available ticket is immediately put in the basket and paid for by a card with a Visa or “Mir” payment system. Bank transfers are not available. The purchased ticket must be collected in the ticket center of any city-organizer.

“Red” cell means that tickets are available, but they are few. “Gray” – that tickets are not available. Above the tickets of available categories the cost is indicated. On the screenshot from June 22 – tickets available on the day of matches

But, as practice has shown, it is often impossible to purchase a ticket the first time, regardless of the excitement around the match . When trying to put the goods in the basket, often flies error and the offer to “try again.” The situation can be repeated an infinite number of times . Among the exceptions are “art-house” games like Panama-Tunisia, the problems with which, most likely, will not arise.

An attempt to put in the basket an “affordable” ticket for the match

This encountered many fans who share in social networks their observations.

  • Tickets can be shown as “available”, but in reality they are already “unavailable for reservation” or simply bought out. This may be explained by an agiotage, behind which the FIFA website “does not have time”;
  • Tickets appear haphazardly, so some watch for “dumping” day and night . It comes to the fact that tickets for almost any match of the 2018 World Cup suddenly appear on the day of the match or just before it starts.
Screenshot from Telegram-chat
Screenshot from Telegram-chat
On the cases of hacking the FIFA website for ticket sales was not reported. However, Russian fans have come up with several ways that are supposed to make the buying process easier.

Groups on VKontakte

To issue a ticket for official resale, you will have to pay 10% commission. Including to avoid additional costs, in social networks (mainly – in “VKontakte”) there are many communities for informal purchases without intermediaries.

Screenshot from Telegram-chat

However, such communities do not live long. “VKontakte” began to block the community for reselling tickets for the 2018 World Cup, confirmed representatives of the social network. “Our specialists monitor the entire site, and also respond to complaints from users, the state regulator and rights holders,” the company noted. In response, administrators of such communities called on subscribers to “discuss the sale of tickets” in Telegram.


Before the start of the 2018 World Cup, several bots appeared in Telegram, which in real time track unaffiliated “throws” of tickets on the FIFA website.

However, turning on notifications for such channels is not very convenient, since new messages appear every 5-10 minutes. Authors of bots are aware of the problem and offer a paid subscription only for interesting matches. It is issued through a bot and costs 500 rubles (10 dollars for foreigners).

Telegram-chats for ticket monitoring

Unlike numerous Telegram chats for “gray” resale, in the chat rooms for monitoring a more rigorous moderation. They do not like “second-hand dealers”, and at night bans for messages not on the subject of “throwing” tickets. The fact is that according to the observation of the participants of such chats, most often “throw-in” occurs exactly from midnight to six o’clock in the morning.

In such chats also share observations when monitoring the official site of FIFA and successes, if you get to take some kind of ticket. Telegram users also complained about dealers allegedly buying tickets with their own bots as soon as they appeared on the site.

Change of language on the FIFA website

In the “basement” of the site FIFA can change the language of the site. The organizers do not recommend doing this when the tickets are in the basket, as they will be lost.

In the Telegram chat, monitoring found that in Russian, English and other languages ​​sometimes different tickets are available. True, no systematicity is observed, so fans randomly switch to different languages ​​in the hope of catching a ticket.

Method 10 minutes

The most popular theory in Telegram chats is connected with updating the FIFA database. Supporters of this method believe that you can put the desired ticket in the basket about two minutes before it sees the bulk of visitors to the site. Telegram is full of messages about those who have successfully used this theory, as well as those who did not succeed.

Method 10 minutes in a retelling of one of the fans
Method 10 minutes in a retelling of one of the fans
Passage to matches bypassing FIFA rules

Those who still used the services of resellers, most often there are questions about going to the stadium. This is due to the rules according to which the name of the ticket owner (not even on the ticket itself, but on the FIFA website) and the passport data of the fan must match. With the “gray” resale, changing the name of the “guest” is problematic, and the name of the main customer of tickets is impossible.

In the Telegram chats, monitoring indicated that in fact, when going to the stadium, they only look at the coincidence of the Fan ID photo with the fan himself. FIFA did not comment on these reports.


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