By Jack Tarrant
TOKYO (Reuters) – Tokyo 2020 organizers said on Friday they had underestimated Japanese demand for tickets after 3.22 million briefs were sold during the first domestic sales phase last month.
The unexpected demand prompted organizers to re-evaluate their Japan-based sales going forward and there will now be a second ticket lottery in August for those who missed out the first time around.
Organizers say hundreds of thousands of tickets will be available in the second lottery.
The exact format of the second phase has yet to be decided but will only be open to those who failed to obtain tickets the first time around, when results were announced on June 20.
The window will close by Aug. 22, when the application process for Paralympics tickets is scheduled to begin.
“There was a massive amount of applications received in the first wave and this absolutely exceeded our expectations,” Tokyo 2020 spokesman Masa Takaya said on Friday.
“So in that respect, we are pleased to see such huge excitement being built up amongst people across Japan.”
Organizers have also ditched plans to offer further unsold tickets on a first-come, first-served basis later in the autumn, as had been originally proposed.
There is now likely to be a third lottery phase instead, only open once again to Japan-based residents.
Those wishing to purchase tickets outside Japan must do so through country-specific Authorized Ticket Resellers.
Between 70-80 percent of all tickets have been reserved for domestic sale with the remainder allocated to international customers and sponsors.
“As far as we know, the reaction from the public to this second chance is being well received … and by those who participated in the first wave,” added Takaya.
“So, we are right on track but we want to continue making our best effort.”
Organizers say that over 7.5 million people had registered for the Tokyo fan ID needed to make a ticket application.
Although the total number of tickets available has yet to be announced as many venue designs are still being worked on, organizers said in their bid for the 2020 Games that 7.8 million tickets would be made available.
(Editing by Peter Rutherford)