Ticketing Information and FAQs

There are some changes the way tickets will be made available this May Ball. Primarily among the differences a balloting system will be introduced. The May Ball Committee believes that this will herald in a fairer and more transparent system. This document aims to outline the process for this year and answer any questions potential applicants may have about the procedure.

Basic Outline

The ticketing system will be initially active for the week Sunday 20th November – Sunday 27th November. During this time applicants will be able to provide information about how many tickets and of which type they would like to apply for. Once the end of the week is up tickets will be distributed to those who have made applications. In the case of demand outstripping supply, tickets will be allocated in a weighted allocation process. Applicants will be notified of the results by email and will be able to view the results online.
Once an Applicant has successfully received confirmation of how many tickets they have received, they must meet the two payment deadlines to secure their tickets. Unsuccessful and late applicants have the option to be placed on a waiting list. Should reserve tickets become available they will be notified and have the option to purchase them.

The first payment deadline is Sunday 11th December 2016 for a £50 deposit on each ticket.
The second payment deadline is Sunday 5th March 2017 for the remaining amount.
Reminders for payment deadline are available through the ticketing system.

Applicant Categories

Applicants fall into a number of categories and have different ticket options. The category system is introduced to ensure Current Members of Magdalene College have near certainty of attending should they wish with higher priority then being given to recent graduates.
Internal – Current Members of Magdalene College
Alumni – Alumni of Magdalene College
Recent Alumni – Alumni of Magdalene College who have graduated in the last year

Ticket Types

There are two main types of ticket for the Ball. They are Dining and Non-Dining. Dining guests have earlier admission, a Drinks Reception and a lavish meal before enjoying the rest of the event. Non-Dining guests proceed straight into the Drinks Reception and then enjoy their night. Magdalene May Ball tickets admit a pair of guests to the event regardless of type.
We have sold out of Pepys Club tickets.

Ticket Application

Applicants may place up to three applications. For each one a preference for the type must be indicated (Dining or Non-Dining). If an applicant wishes they can indicate they would be interested in swapping ticket type should their preferred type sells out first.

Ticket Allocation

After the Application Window has closed the system will be taken offline and the balloting process will occur. Tickets choices are ranked in numerical order (1 is first choice, 2 is second etc).

Tickets will be allocated in stages as follows:

1. Internal Members receive their first choice ticket
2. Recent Alumni receive their first choice ticket
3. Alumni Applicants receive their first choice ticket
4. Internal Members receive their second choice ticket
5. Recent Alumni receive their second choice ticket
6. Alumni Applicants receive their second choice ticket
7. Internal Members receive their third choice ticket
8. Recent Alumni receive their third choice ticket
9. Alumni Applicants receive their third choice ticket

If at any stage there are insufficient tickets left to cater for all applications then within that stage a random draw will be held to determine allocation. Once this is done unsuccessful applications will be switched if the Applicant requested it and reconsidered. In the tie breaker scenario (where a stage hits dining and standard limits at the same time) dining tickets will be sorted first.
Once a ticket type is sold out, all applications for that ticket is subsequent stages will be intially unsuccessful (and then switched if this was requested).

Important Points

Due to the nature of the changes a few important points must be observed.
• Applicants are not guaranteed to be successful in all their applications.
• The May Ball Committee ask that all applications are made in good faith with a genuine intention to purchase the ticket if it is allocated to the applicant. Please do not double book by attempting to reserve a ticket for a pair of guests if another application is intended for one or both of them. The procedure in this eventuality is spelt out in the terms and conditions.
• Ticket allocation is procedural rather than all or nothing. If you have plans to attend the Ball as a larger group it is advisable to make multiple low stage bookings rather than rely on a single applicant receiving all their applications.
• Because of the ticket allocation method, late applications after the Application Window has ended cannot be processed. Applicants at this stage will be added to the Waiting List.

Waiting list

If an Applicant is unsuccessful in making an application and expresses an interest for reserve tickets or an Applicant is late in making an application they will be added to the Waiting List. When tickets become available each Applicant on the Waiting List will be given a week to place a deposit on them. Should an Applicant decline to purchase the ticket as this point their name will be removed and the ticket will be offered to the next on the list.

Payment Process

Payments are tied to your six digit long user identifier. When you come to pay please make single payments with your user identifier as the reference number. For example if you have two successful applications you would make a single payment of £100 with your reference number as your deposit.
You cannot pay for tickets one at a time. If you cannot afford a single payment please contact the ticketing officer to cancel your tickets. Payments with incorrect identifiers or incorrect amounts will not count towards meeting deadlines.
If you wish to split costs between the named guests on a ticket, the responsibility of managing correct single payments is the holder's responsibility not the Committee.
Payments should be made by bank transfer only.

Names on Tickets

After tickets have been successfully purchased applicants must identify the two guest names for the ticket. Initial name allocation will occur in Lent Term although there are no restrictions stopping applicants from placing names sooner. Should a successful applicant wish to change the details on their ticket after the deadline on March 5th 2017 they can place a request online. Late changes will face an administration charge. For more details please see the terms and conditions.

Seating Plan

Dining Ticket holders will be asked to express a preference as to who they would like to sit next to for the meal. Collecting these preferences will occur in Easter Term.
The seating plan will be sorted by ticket not by individual. This will mean that both guests on a ticket will be sat next to one another.
After taking the above into account the May Ball Committee will do its best to accommodate reasonable requests where possible.

Dietary Requirement

Dining Ticket holders will be asked to identify any dietary requirements for the named guests on their tickets in Easter Term.

Ticket Collection

Ticket Collection will take place in Easter term. To collect a ticket the 8 digit long ticket identifier must be quoted along with the corresponding checkword. The owner of the ticket may entrust these to anyone else to collect on their behalf.
Collection will be in Cripps Court, provisionally during the following dates and times:
●Sunday 18th June 10:00-13:00
●Monday 19th June 10:00-13:00
●Tuesday 20th June 10:00-13:00
●Wednesday 21st June 16:00-17:00


What day is the May Bay held on?
Magdalene May Ball will be held on the evening of Wednesday 21st June 2017.

I am an Alumnus and haven't received any information. What should I do?
The majority of Alumni have been sent an email containing information and instructions. If you have not received one please contact the Alumni Office who will be able to add you to the correct mailing lists and send through the latest information.

Am I guaranteed a ticket?
There are more members of College than tickets available hence no certainty can be offered. However you are more likely to get a ticket than in previous years since everyone will have one chance before another individual has their second.

Am I guaranteed three tickets?
No. The probability of getting three tickets depends on how many other applications are made, what ticket types are requested and ballot position.

How many tickets should I apply for?
Please apply for the number of tickets you want up to the maximum of three and the system will do it's best to accommodate your request whilst considering everyone else.
Requesting tickets you have no intention of using is antisocial as it will cause the system to behave in a sub-optimal manner.

If I only want a single ticket and want the best chance, how many should I apply for?
If you want a single ticket, apply for a single ticket.
To increase your chance of success please consider indicating you would be happy with swapping.
Additional applications will not increase your chances of the receiving your first ticket.

What is the swap option for?
The swap option is designed to support Applicants who wish an application to be considered for the other ticket type should their first preference sell out first in the ballot.
An indication to swap will not make you less likely to get your first choice of ticket type in the ballot.
If a wish to swap ticket type is indicated, then that wish is binding. There is no direct mechanism to switch type back after issuing.

Do you offer single tickets to the Ball (ie. ticket to admit a single person)?

Is ticket allocation first come first served?
No, regardless of when an applicant applies during the ballot window they will be treated based solely on their applicant category.

How many people does a ticket admit?
A ticket admits two guests. In a large number of cases one of those named on the ticket will be the ticket owner.

Am I able to sell a ticket to a friend at another college?
Ticket resale above face value, advertising a ticket for sale or attempting to unfairly control an element of May Ball ticket distribution is not permitted. However private reimbursement for tickets or exchanges in part for other May Week Events is acceptable. For more information please read the terms and conditions.

Can I order tickets for someone else if I am not planning to attend the Ball?
Yes, you are allowed to do this. However please be aware the responsibility of managing the tickets falls on the ticket owner not the named guests.

Why did you offer the option for three applications if it is not certain to happen?
When designing the ticketing system we could not predict the future demand for tickets. The option exists to take into account the possibility of low demand and cater accordingly.
In previous years lack of demand at some points during the year has led to certain people having three tickets at once.

I have two tickets, can I separate out the payments for each?
No, you must pay the joint deposit and joint final payment together. If for financial reasons you are not able to do so either wait until you can or contact the Ticketing Officer to cancel one of the tickets.
If a friend wishes to contribute towards buying a ticket the ticket holder must bear the administrative task of making single payments.

I’ve placed deposits for some tickets but only wish to use a fraction of them. What happens now?
Deposits are non-refundable. The tickets you no longer wish to use will be cancelled.

I’ve paid for tickets but no longer require them. What happens now?
Refunds can be given in certain situations at the discretion of the Committee however a charge will be levied in all but a few exceptional cases.

My ticket has become locked, what does that mean?
Locking a ticket indicates for one reason or another that the ticket is no longer under your control. From that point forth the ticket becomes invalid pending a successful appeal in cases of mitigating circumstances. Scenarios for losing control of tickets include failing to pay a deposit, failing to pay in full or breaching other terms and conditions. A locked ticket may subsequently stop a user receiving subsequent tickets as it occupies an entry on the system.

My ticket is marked as an exception, what does that mean?
Exception tickets are those that have complications which mean other statuses are unsuitable. If a ticket is marked with this please talk directly to the Ticketing Officer. Each case is handled individually.

Please can I confirm if names X and Y are on ticket Z?
If you the account holder verifying an update on the system you may request a manual check as a last resort. Please be aware that this is a slower process than checking online.
If you are not the account holder then in line with good data privacy policy, we will be unable to answer that question without the account owner's consent. There is no direct detection system in place to verify falsified requests.

I’m not sure about ____?
Please read this document and the terms and conditions to see if they clarify what you are after.
If you are still unsure please contact Robert at ticketing@magdalenemayball.com .