4 November 2009
With just over 200 days to go before the 2010 Fifa World Cup™ kicks off, 2010 Organising Committee CEO Danny Jordaan says everything is on track for a successful event.
Addressing Parliament’s tourism portfolio committee in Cape Town this week, Jordaan said South Africa’s stadium, road and airport upgrades, construction of 25 new hotels, and scaling up of bus and aircraft fleets, were all on stream for the World Cup.
The event is expected to attract in the region of 450 000 fans and contribute R30-billion to South Africa’s economy, Jordaan said, while the preparations had so far created around 20 000 direct jobs in stadium construction and 400 000 other jobs on other infrastructure projects.
Cheaper match tickets
Jordaan said 680 000 of the 3 030 077 tickets available to the public had already been sold – including 82 000 tickets in the United States alone.
In all, 120 000 tickets priced at R140 each and situated behind the goal posts would be reserved exclusively for poorer South Africans. These were less than the cheapest tickets for both South Korea and Japan 2002, which went for US$50 (R394), and for Germany 2006, which went for 35 euros (R407).
The 20 000 construction workers who have worked on the stadiums would each get two complimentary tickets to the opening games at the stadium they worked on, Jordaan said.
Ticket prices range from R490 to R3 150 for the opening match, from R120 to R1 120 for group matches, from R1 050 to R2 100 for the semi-finals, and from R1 050 to R6 300 for the final.
South Africa’s 10 World Cup stadiums will host about five matches each, with the semi-finals being held in Durban and Cape Town and the final at Soccer City, Johannesburg.
With the Final Draw taking place in Cape Town on 4 December, Jordaan expects there to be a rush when the next ticket-buying phase opens on 5 December. There will also be a two further sales phases, running from 9 February to 7 April and from 15 April to 11 July.
However, Jordaan said one would also be able to buy tickets during the event itself, as some fans whose team didn’t advance would sell their tickets back to Fifa.
Fans can buy tickets through any FNB branch or online through www.Fifa.com.
Teams that have already qualified for 2010 are: Mexico, USA, Honduras, Ivory Coast, South Africa, Ghana, Chile, Paraguay, Brazil, Japan, North Korea, South Korea, Australia, Italy, Germany, Spain, Serbia, Denmark, Slovakia, Switzerland and England.
Local, foreign accommodation
A total of 1.7-million rooms will be available for the World Cup, including 107 000 in neighbouring countries. Mauritius will make 67 000 of these available, and the Organising Committee has already signed an agreement with the country to this effect.
Jordaan said host cities like Bloemfontein, where there was a shortage of rooms, would make use of accommodation in neighbouring towns.
The Organising Committee was also considering how to accommodate people with disabilities, and had hired a consultant from the South African Disability Alliance to help with this, said OC legal manager Leslie Sidibe.
Asked by the portfolio committee what issues around the event were keeping him up at night, Jordaan said: “You don’t know, you just have to deal with it”.
He pointed out that the 1998 World Cup in France was hit by a strike by airline pilots and airport cleaners at the start of the event, adding that maintaining strong relationships were key to avoiding possible disruptions such as strikes.