After reading a very interesting article on the Mag’s website last night, which can be found here, a rather troublesome, but not entirely unsurprising, insight was given into how Newcastle United handle season-ticket renewals.
I must point out from the very beginning that your esteemed editor is not a season-ticket holder, and despite craving nothing more than my weekly fix of the addictive atmosphere of St James’ Park, I do not attend the games on a point of principle. It is within my power to decide if and when Mike Ashley gets a single penny from me.
However, it would appear that season-ticket holders have not been afforded that choice. Apparently, under the 10 year deal, you pay a monthly sum for your season ticket and if you have not cancelled this direct debit by the passing of the renewal date, your season ticket is automatically renewed. As the article points out, the club do not advertise when the deadline for cancelling your season ticket is, and one can only assume that this is an attempt to secure payments for your season ticket without your express knowledge until it may be too late. So before you have even considered whether or not you want to renew your season ticket, you may have no choice if the deadline date for renewal has passed and you have not cancelled.
Surely this is morally wrong? But then again, what can you expect from the hollow shell that is now masquerading as NUFC?
Which begs the question – when is the deadline date for renewing season tickets for next season? TODAY!
I would like to point out that I do not want to encourage people to not go to the games, or not renew their season tickets, but surely they should be able to sit down, weigh up the pros and cons, and then make an informed decision before deciding whether or not they wish to do so? It is wrong to have that decision taken away from you simply as a mechanism to force people to keep paying into a season ticket that they have not decided whether or not they want to have next season.
I must also point out that this only applies to those who are paying for season tickets via direct debit. If you are paying for your season ticket via direct debit, you have until 5pm today to decide whether or not you want to renew – although you can hand in a written letter to the box office on Saturday.
You can e-mail the box office at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can phone the box office on 0844 372 1892
Like I said, I am not encouraging anyone to stop going to St James’ Park to support the team – it is very admirable – but do you really need a season ticket to do that? All a season ticket does is guarantee Mike Ashley gets your money regardless of how well he is running the club, and regardless of how the team are performing.
If you decide to keep going to St James’ Park, surely it would be better to go on a match-by-match basis as you then have the choice whether or not you want to give your money to Mike Ashley. It takes the power from Ashley and puts it back into your hands.
Also, is it not a little suspicious that the deadline for next season’s renewal comes before the transfer window closes? So you have no way of knowing whether or not Cabaye’s replacement has been bought, or if we will be sluggishly limping to a 8th/9th place finish. Question the club, question our future, question Ashley but make your own decision.