By Haley Chi-Sing
Whether you are a die-hard baseball fan or just recently learned how the scoreboard works, you have probably heard of the famous #Student9s tickets, the most enticing sports tickets for college students. I heard about them when I was applying to BU, but never thought about them. But, from the moment I got to Boston, I was determined to go to a Red Sox game, and the cheaper the better.
Of course, I was not aware of how the “process” worked at all. This became abundantly clear standing in line last Saturday afternoon in the cold with flats and a light jacket on. By the end the night, I had been at Fenway Park for eight hours, the Sox were losing 7-2, and I could no longer feel my hands and feet.
But, as a Boston college student, it was an experience that had to be fulfilled. And despite the mind/finger-numbing experience I had, I still very much enjoyed it and might even do it again.
But, here is what I learned for next time and hope you can take advantage of as well:
Check who is playing FIRST
You can’t just decide on a whim if you’re going to go wait in line for tickets the day of the game. You need to check who the Sox are playing at least a couple of days prior. This will determine the availability and demand of the tickets – regular and #Student9s.
#Student9s don’t actually have seats – it’s standing room
My friends and I went into the game with the notion that we were going to have seats during the game. We were sorely mistaken.
#Student9s are designated areas around the ballpark for people to stand and watch the game. Really, the only sitting you’ll be doing is outside of the ballpark as you wait or while you’re eating inside the park (if you find a table).
If you don’t mind, then go for it! It’s really not that bad. However, if you were truly hoping for (and want) seats, the only option you really have is to purchase the tickets prior to the game. Your best bet is to check StubHub, Vivid Seats or SeatGeek – don’t go on the MLB website, it’s more expensive.
Prepare yourself for a long wait in line
We arrived at Fenway Park at around 3 p.m. to wait in line for the tickets. We knew tickets were limited, especially during the ALCS. Not surprisingly, though, there were already people lined up in front of the entrance who had arrived hours earlier.
To be fair, we were pretty lucky to even get tickets because of how late in the season it was. And we were part of the minority that waited only three hours. For a championship game, expect to be in line for about 3-5 hours prior to the opening of the ticket booth.
Once you’ve bought your ticket, you won’t be allowed to leave Fenway at all so as to prevent reselling of the tickets. So, there’s another two-ish hours of waiting before the game starts, but this time you have all of the food inside Fenway at your disposal.
Check the weather hourly
To be fair, I had checked the weather, and I was aware it was going to be around 60 degrees and would fall to about 50 degrees. But, unfortunately, I did not dress for the “below 50” period of the day.
Make sure you check the weather before heading out, as you probably won’t be able to leave the line. If anything, be sure to dress in layers so as to be prepared for any “curveball” Mother Nature might throw at you that day (pun intended).
Bring some snacks or eat something before getting in line
As previously stated, you will be in line for the majority of the day. Even if you’re the type of person who typically skips breakfast, gameday is definitely not the day to do that.
Eat a big meal before going to stand in line or bring snacks with you. You are actually allowed to bring snacks into the ballpark with you prior to the game, so don’t be afraid to bring the family size Cheez-Its – I assure you they won’t go to waste.
Don’t forget your headphones, charger and maybe even some homework
I cannot stress enough how long you will be in line and, to be fair, talking with your friends and family can only take up so much time before everyone becomes tired with their own voices and standing.
Make sure to bring your headphones to listen to music or even watch an episode or two on Netflix on the sidewalk. But, of course, this will use up a decent amount of your battery, so be sure to bring a portable charger with you. The last thing you need is for your phone to die while you’re in line or even during the game.
If you decide to go to the game during midterm season, or even if you have a few small assignments due the next week, you might as well bring them. It’s a productive way to pass the time and, before you know it, you’ll have finished your writing assignment and will be walking through the entrance gate.