Golf fans are set to turn out in record-breaking numbers for the 150th instalment of The Open at St Andrews in July. Amid an unprecedented demand for tickets, the historic milestone event is shaping up to be an extraordinary sporting spectacle.
The R&A has advised that more than 1.3 million applications were made in the ticket ballot, resulting in the highest-ever number of general admission tickets being issued to fans.
In total, 290,000 fans are set to attend, surpassing the previous high mark set at St Andrews in 2000, when 239,000 spectators watched Tiger Woods lift the Claret Jug for the first time.
Here’s a rundown of the phenomenal numbers:
- A forecast by the Sport Industry Research Centre at Sheffield Hallam University (commissioned by the R&A, VisitScotland and Fife Council) shows the total economic impact resulting from staging the event at St Andrews will reach £100 million for the first time.
- An additional destination marketing benefit of £100 million to St Andrews and Scotland, produced by global media exposure (measured by YouGov Sport), makes up a forecast total economic benefit of £200 million.
- A record 20% of general admission tickets have been allocated to fans under the age of 25, including over 20,000 children aged under 16 (who will be attending free of charge thanks to the long-running Kids Go Free initiative).
- A record 80,000 spectators will attend the four practice days (exceeding the total of 61,000 fans who attended the equivalent days at Royal Portrush in 2019).
- Around 3,650 visitors have booked a place to stay on-site at The Open Camping Village this year.
- Almost 40% of those staying at the campsite are under 25, meaning around 8,000 free bed spaces have been provided to them since the initiative was launched at Royal Troon in 2016.