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Wimbledon Queueing Experience part 2

A common question in this forum is how to meet locals. If this is what you are going for this is the perfect place. Almost everyone is social and has a ton of time to kill. I talked to a lot of people, some from London and other from other countries. The queue can be fluid at times so you won’t just talk to the people directly in front and behind you.

About 9:00 they took our sprawled lines, one by one, and tightened us up. There was still room to spread out, but we were relatively close to the next lines. We found out this was because the golf course next to the felid was opening up. This seems like the official queue. When you get to that point they check your card and there is entertainment for all the people still waiting.

About that time, they start handing out wrist bands to those getting show court tickets (Center Court, Court 1 and Court 2). Unless you’re camping, this won’t be you. About 10:00 they started moving people into the golf course. For everyone that had a queue number within the capacity number they had decided they would get to buy their ticket right away and get in about 11:00. The lower the queue number the earlier you could get in the gates.

For the rest of us that were above that capacity number we were stuck. At some point we moved back to the plastic walk way. This was the worst part as it was hot and we were stuck within the rails. If we would have been further up in the queue, I think we would have walked through this part and not been stuck.

At some point the queue will move and you reach the golf course. They will check your queue card at this point and you may move quite a bit. This seems more like a traditional line as it goes along a path along the edge of the court. In the golf course there are a few vendors, bathrooms and a little bit of entertainment. Several screens are up showing who is playing that day or live matches. There was a free sample coffee bar and a small tennis court for people to play on. Remember we are talking about hundreds of people in the golf course line.
By talking to several stewards, very friendly but scared of getting bad information, I was able to come to a better idea of how this works. I assumed that the grounds capacity was set the number of tickets sold and how many actually entered. In fact, it’s how many people are moving around the grounds. Someone (or someones) evaluate how many people are outside of the courts. That is why there is a big move when the show courts start because all of those people move into the big stadium. As the day moves on more courts are in use and as the day gets later more people leave.
Once you get near the front you will hear the stewards literally let in odd numbers like 52 or 23. Sometimes there are big movements and sometimes very small. We slowly moved through the golf course line as these smaller groups were let in. Eventually we got to the front and were let in. You then go through more paths to get off the golf course and to the ticketing buying booths. You MUST have cash to buy your ticket. There are ATMs so if you’ve spent hours waiting you won’t be crushed. They check your bag and you’re finally in. While it would have been a lot easier to just walk up and buy a ticket, I am happy to have my queuing memory.
If you are a just curious about what Wimbledon looks like if you wait until it’s close to the end of the tournament we were told the queues are very short. By that point the courts are largely taken up by junior or legends matches.

Posted by
6171 posts

Thanks for your very detailed report. I had wanted to attend Wimbledon for a long time so the info is very helpful. Can I ask where do the people you see on tv just outside the complex watching the games from the lawn fit into this? There are large screens set up and it seems like folks who can't get in end up watching from a lawn area (with blankets, food, etc.) - am I mixing this up with the US Open in Flushing? If not, are there places to watch the matches in a communal setting without having to deal with any queues?

Posted by
23 posts

Thanks so much for posting this. Very helpful information. We would love to do this sometime

Posted by
13 posts

The lawn with the TV screens is actually inside the Wimbledon complex. So to watch there, you would have to have a grounds pass. I'm not aware of any other location that would be a similar atmosphere. I do know that when we were there every pub we went to had tennis on. It seemed to be a much bigger deal than it is in the states.

Posted by
6171 posts

It seemed to be a much bigger deal than it is in the states.

Of course, I would totally expect this. Same with soccer. I grew up watching both and still do. Thanks again for sharing all this good info!

Posted by
6171 posts

Thanks Emma! Did the name change to Murray Mount after Andy Murray won Wimbledon or the Olympics?

Posted by
4468 posts

The official name is the Aorangi Terrace - the land to the north of Centre Court used to be leased to the New Zealand Sports and Social Club who named it after the Maori name for Mount Cook.

The AELTC also now own the freehold on the land the golf club is on. They have been given notice that the lease won't be renewed and the land is expected to be used for expansion. This can't happen before 2041 as the golf club members declined an offer for the lease to be bought out.