Wacken anger because of the new payment system: four hours of queuing for the first beer | Regional

Wacken anger because of the new payment system |

Four hours of queuing for the first beer

Wacken – The “Wacken Open Air” is considered to be a particularly well organized festival. But this year, for the first time, the fans are angry with the organizers!

The reason for the Wacken anger is the new payment system. Instead of cash, there’s a plastic chip on the wristband that every visitor wears on their wrist. You can use the chip to make contactless payments for beer (5 euros for 0.4 liters), barbecue skewers (6 euros) or band shirts (25 euros). Sort of like a mini credit card.

Queuing in Wacken – not uncommon this year

Photo: Private

Sounds practical, but causes a lot of frustration among visitors. Complaints rained down on the Wacken Facebook page:

“Just embarrassing for such a famous and big festival!”

“A catastrophe this plan, nothing to excuse.”

“That’s an indictment for someone who has been hosting festivals for 30 years.”

“An absolutely catastrophic plan.”

What makes people so angry are the enormous waiting times. They had to queue for up to four hours on Wednesday to receive wristbands and payment chips. Time in which they could neither buy anything to eat nor drink – because that only works with the chips.

Queuing for the wristband

Queuing for the wristband

Photo: Private

Many arrivals had previously waited up to five hours in the queue of cars in front of the campsite. A whole day of waiting went by and some fans missed all the bands they had bought expensive tickets for.

Judas Priest rocked Wacken on Thursday

Judas Priest rocked Wacken on Thursday


Not enough staff?

The Wacken chaos is reminiscent of the conditions at German airports. Does the festival have too few staff for the rush of fans (75,000 visitors)?

When asked by BILD, a spokesman for the festival wrote: “We work with almost the same number of staff, since years of experience have shown that we need exactly this amount to look after so many fans.” The long waiting times were caused by the fact that “the Coordination of the responsible personnel apparently did not work out optimally.” And further: “We apologize for that and regret that some fans were not able to enjoy the first day as usual.”

The waiting fans were provided with thousands of free water bottles. Still annoying that they can’t buy anything without a chip on their arm. Why is cash forbidden in Wacken?

The Wacken team replies: “In the last two and a half years, the world has taken giant strides towards cashless payments. We know that many of our fans experience this development every day, so it was a logical consequence for us, after initial experience in previous years, to implement cashless payment in full here too.”

The two Wacken fans finally have a cold beer in their hands

The two Wacken fans finally have a cold beer in their hands

Photo: Private

In the meantime the situation has calmed down. Will the fans who missed all concerts on Wednesday be compensated? The organizers leave that open to BILD.

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