It never fails to pop up – sale of National Day Parade (NDP) tickets which are given away for free.

The NDP – a country-wide celebration for the independence of the nation happens on 9 Aug every year. Tickets to the parade are given away free to Singaporeans and Permanent Residences; and for the past few years, all that needs to be done to obtain these tickets is to register online or via AXN machines which are conveniently located island-wide.

As someone who enjoys the parade, I had been registering for the ballot, but have not gotten a single ticket for the past 5 (?) years. This is really sickening. I miss the good old days of gathering all my friends to any of the designated stadiums and camping there overnight for up to 2 nights! It’s really fun because you get to catch up with friends that you have never met for the entire year. 🙂 Moreover, how often do you really get to camp outside? (NSF/NSmen, SAF/RSAF/RSN regulars excluded).

I think it’s perhaps time that the government consider part ballot part queue. No doubt it’s going to retard the entire system instead of advancing it, but it really gives people like myself a chance, through queueing, to get tickets for the NDP. At least I know I won’t sell it way, and would rather give it to people, like me, who would like to watch the parade and be in celebration with the rest of the nation. Of course there are other ways of celebrating with the nation, but the feeling of being within the parade is really different.

Nonetheless, as it was reported, the black market rate is up to $250. Someone who had advertised for sale of NDP (under the guise of giving them for free) was asking for $120 for “transportation fees”. So theoretically, the tickets are for free, but I’d have to foot his 2-way transportation bill of $120 per ticket. Apparently if I want to get 2, I’d need to foot 2 persons’ bill because he needs another person to bring the other ticket. :S

But… I really want to go for the parade… should I foot their transportation fees? But I am really going to be broke for the next few months. 🙁

TICKETS for the National Day Parade are again being sold online – and this time, even before they have been physically distributed. Scalpers keen to make a quick profit on tickets, that are given out free, have asked for as much as $250 per ticket. This is among the highest asking prices for an NDP ticket in recent history.

And it is still early days yet, with about eight weeks to go to the parade. Last year, bids for tickets to the parade hit a record $252 in late July.

This time around, there are sellers on Yahoo! Auctions and eBay, with one eBay user putting his tickets up for last Friday.

But the NDP committee only started informing the 54,000 successful bidders two days later, on Sunday, June 10.

Plus, people can only start collecting these tickets on Saturday next week.

There are already two potential buyers for the tickets on the Yahoo! site.

Neither Yahoo! Singapore nor eBay Singapore could be reached for comment on Thursday.

There is more buzz about the parade this year because it will the first to be held on a floating platform – purpose-built on Marina Bay.

Plus, this year, there will be brand new items like special water effects, a light show and unique performances.

Also pushing up the value of the tickets is the smaller seating capacity of the new venue, which has a seating capacity of 27,000.

This is about half the capacity of the National Stadium, where the Parade has traditionally been held at.

On Thursday, an NDP organising committee spokesman said that they were ‘monitoring the situation’ closely.

He said ‘action would be taken’ against those who sell their tickets.

While selling the tickets is, at present, not illegal – touts will not be thrown in jail or fined – the committee says it can trace these ‘blackmarket’ tickets because they have serial numbers.

This could have several consequences: For one thing, the tout could be barred from picking up his tickets or be blacklisted from getting tickets to future NDPs, said the committee.

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