High ticket price primary point of contention
By Nour Elshenawy
Photo Credit: AUSA
Going to a celebratory ball has been a yearly tradition for many sports teams and societies at the University. This year's event, the first to include a joint Sport and Societies Ball, took place on the 29th of March at the P&J Live.
Amid reports of student complaints about the ball, The Gaudie wanted to find out where exactly AUSA went wrong with the event and what led many students to regret attending, as well as getting feedback from AUSA on the issue.
A survey was sent out to students in a number of sports teams and societies. Statistics showed that 66% of students who responded gave the event an overall rating of 1-2 out of 5. Additionally, 100% voted 1 and 2 out of 5 when it came to the amount paid for the quality they got. Plus, the food and drinks variety were given a disappointing rating of 1 out of 5 by 70% of the students, while the activities and entertainment were given a 3 out of 5-star rating by 40% of the students.
When asked what key disappointing factors were, answers included 'ticket prices were not equivalent to what we got,' 'bar prices were definitely not student friendly,' 'poor space planning for ceilidh dance,' 'Portion of food was tiny compared to the ticket price we paid,' 'the venue wasn’t meant for full capacity,' and 'the meal was nothing exciting.'
Alternatively, when asked about what they liked most, many students joked about not finding a single thing while other students mentioned the 360 photo booth and the ceilidh dance.
'As a student event it was severely overpriced for the contents of the night,' one student told us. 'I think it should have been a lot cheaper or more should have been offered considering the price,' another said. 'The activities ball did not live up to a 65-pound ticket,' a third added.
All in all, the majority of the students who filled in our survey were disappointed with the quality of the event when compared to the price of the ticket, especially in a cost of living crisis.
After hearing from the students, The Gaudie asked for a response from AUSA.
Vice President of Activities Adam Lambert said: 'We were delighted to be able to provide our first joint Sports and Societies Ball to celebrate the contribution our student-led groups make to university life. This was our biggest and most successful event since returning to in person events with over 600 students attending and 50 activities represented on the night.'
'We appreciate all feedback and are always looking at ways in which we can continue to improve and grow events in the future. Our ticket price reflected the cost of delivering the event at a venue capable of holding such a large ball and is in line with similar events at other universities. Our price was not designed to deliver a profit and unfortunately events like this have sadly not been immune to the increase in operating costs. We tried very hard to maintain the balance between keeping ticket prices to a minimum and including as much value within the ticket price as possible and will continue to review that based on the views of students.'
'The atmosphere and feedback on the night was overwhelmingly positive and it was great to see so many students enjoying the key features of the event including the ceilidh band, the transport to and from the venue, and the unique 360 photo booth. We look forward to continuing to develop this event based on student feedback.'