With under 60 days to go until Rugby World Cup 2019 kicks off in Japan, tickets destined for international fans began shipping on Thursday from the DHL Express Tokyo Gateway.
This significant milestone was marked with a symbolic ticket dispatch ceremony in which the very first batch of tickets were officially passed from the Rugby World Cup 2019 Organising Committee to DHL for onward distribution around the globe.
With around 33 per cent of Rugby World Cup 2019 tickets destined for international fans, the ceremony marks the beginning of a process that will see hundreds of thousands of tickets shipped to fans in more than 170 countries worldwide.
As Rugby World Cup 2019 tickets began their global journey, Thursday also saw the announcement of the forthcoming dates for sales of the remaining tickets. The current sales period, open since 18 May, will finish at 23:30 Japan Standard Time (JST) on Wednesday, 24 July. Remaining ticket inventory will then be available for a final general sales phase set to begin at 18:00 JST on Saturday, 10 August at www.rugbyworldcup.com/tickets.
These tickets will be a mixture of seats released from ongoing venue planning and configuration and hand-backs from the tournament's commercial programme and unions, and tickets that have been registered for official resale by fans who can no longer attend matches.
Japan Rugby World Cup 2019 Organising Committee CEO Akira Shimazu said: “Today marked another major milestone in the Rugby World Cup 2019 journey. The sense of excitement and expectation I experienced today will be replicated hundreds of thousands of times across the world in the coming weeks, as fans in more than 170 countries receive their Rugby World Cup tickets.
“For overseas fans still contemplating coming Japan, I cannot encourage you strongly enough to take this opportunity to secure tickets for what promises to be a truly memorable Rugby World Cup. The entire country is getting swept up in Rugby World Cup fever and our 12 host cities are ready to offer an incredibly special and unique welcome. No matter which match you attend, I can assure that you will have an experience of a lifetime.”
The stunning Rugby World Cup 2019 ticket designs revealed last month at the Tokyo launch event have proved extremely popular with both Japanese and international fans alike. With Rugby World Cup match tickets often kept by fans as a treasured memento, demand for printed tickets has been typically strong. The deadline for fans looking to secure printed tickets will be Wednesday, 24 July when the current sales phase ends. Any tickets sold beyond this date will be available in self-print, e-ticket format only.
With demand for tickets likely to remain incredibly high and ticket availability expected to be tight across most tournament matches, fans are encouraged not to hesitate in purchasing tickets they find available during this next sales period.
Another option for fans looking to secure specific match tickets is through the Rugby World Cup 2019 Official Supporter Tour and Hospitality programmes. Ticket-inclusive travel packages provided through RWC 2019 official travel agents are proving extremely popular, with tickets for some of the most popular matches still available. The prestigious Webb Ellis Suite and private hospitality suites are already sold out, however some great match-day hospitality options are still available. Further details can be found via
www.rugbyworldcup.com/supportertours and www.rugbyworldcup.com/hospitality.
When purchasing tickets, fans will be able to opt-in and donate to the ChildFund Pass It Back programme. In partnership with World Rugby’s Impact Beyond programme, Pass It Back inspires positive social change through the delivery of an integrated life-skills and non-contact tag rugby curriculum, educating children and young people in areas of leadership, problem-solving, gender equality, conflict resolution and life preparation. For more details visit www.childfundpassitback.org.
With such exceptional demand for tickets, fans are being urged to buy exclusively from official channels to avoid being let down. For more details visit www.rugbyworldcup.com/buy-official.
Mastercard is an official partner and the preferred payment card of Rugby World Cup 2019 and will be offering fans a range of Priceless experiences around RWC 2019.