Without doubt the hospitality industry, and more specifically the ticketing market within, can raise a few questions around what's the meaning of official and unofficial. As the UK’s No.1 sports hospitality provider, our vision is to ensure that every experience is memorable and is, without exception, the best it can be. We guarantee 100% official, at every venue, for every event but what does this mean?
Official hospitality - what does this mean?
Official hospitality providers are contracted by the governing body, often referred to as the Rights Holder, eg The All England Lawn Tennis Club for Wimbledon, to design, market and sell world class experiences on their behalf. The all-inclusive package inclusions, alongside locations of the hospitality facilities, are transparent; there are no hidden extras.
Why choose official?
You and your guests, be they customers, suppliers, staff or personal contacts will want to experience premium; from the ticket and seating location, to the food, beverages and on-day service levels – the highest available quality needs to be guaranteed. Official agents have clear and efficient booking processes so you can be safe in the knowledge that everything, including the ticket, is legitimate. Furthermore, profits generated from official hospitality are re-invested back into the event or sport at grassroot level.
In a changing world, it’s important for those committing to, and paying for events months in advance to know that their investment is secure. As an official provider, and one supported by its FTSE parent company, Compass UK & Ireland, Keith Prowse can provide reassurance.
How do you authenticate official? What do I look out for?
The Rights Holders will authenticate official providers on their website – you’re always recommended to do the research and check. Conversely, official partners will carry the respective rights holder logos on their marketing collateral. The brands Keith Prowse represents can be identified in two ways – via a logo carousel at the bottom of the home page (keithprowse.co.uk) and in the form of a dual-logo – as below for The Championships, Wimbledon:
Moreover, always look for an all-inclusive hospitality package, including food, drinks and your ticket as a minimum. Official operators will be able to provide a fully comprehensive description of the package with images.
Ok, so what does unofficial mean?
Unofficial hospitality providers are not supported by and do not have a direct relationship with the event owners. The level of service you are to receive is not guaranteed. Hospitality facilities are often located far off site also, resulting in a lot of walking to and from the match/event which has potential to severely impact your overall hospitality experience.
Unofficial providers tend to look at offering nothing more than the one-size-fits-all package; the option to tailor your experience is often pushed aside - something that shouldn’t be, especially when paying a premium.
For many high-profile events and venues, such as the Guinness Six Nations, tickets aren’t always readily available. Providers may struggle to acquire what was promised, thus relying on grey or black market routes to acquire those tickets. This could negatively impact your entire hospitality experience, as well as the experience of your guests.
We hope that this piece has given you a strong understanding of Keith Prowse, the importance of booking official and what it means to be an official hospitality provider. If you’d like to know more, please sit back, relax and enjoy this one-minute video.
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