Monday, October 18, 2010

The annual dilemma

Every year at this time I start having a debate in my head about whether or not to renew my season ticket package.

The usually send out renewal notices in early December, with the balance for the tickets becoming due in mid January.

That usually gives me a couple months after the season is over to reflect on things, and to begin to miss baseball to the point where it is a not much of an issue when pressed to renew the package.

I got my season ticket renewal notification on Friday…almost a month and a half earlier than usual. On top of that, the Cubs want to know if I’m going to renew my package by November 1st.

My annual dilemma has arrived a little early this year.

I’ve said previously that I had every intension of renewing next season. That has changed a bit. I’m not sure what I’m going to do at this point. And there are so many other factors I have to consider this year.

The Cubs “flat” ticket price policy once again is a bunch of smoke and mirrors…I paid $6592.32 for my package last year…this year that price is up almost $200…a 3% increase (much less substantial than last year’s 20% jump).

If you want a detailed outline of the ticket price “rearrangement”, then you can go over to Aisle 424 and Tim will give you a nice outline of the convoluted arrangement.

So, this is where it stands…I have 2 weeks to decide if I’m going to re-up. Unfortunately for me, I have several new factors to take into account this year including a depleted savings due to my purchase of a new house, my second child who is due in 3 months, and a shaky job situation. Taking these things into consideration, along with the fact that, without a reduction in ticket prices, and a reduced team payroll, I believe the secondary market for tickets (for which I use for games I am unable to attend) will be bad again this season (perhaps worse), I am having a hard time convincing myself that I should renew.

The dilemma is always the idea that once I give up the package, I’ll never get it back. The waiting list, as the Cubs remarked in their letter on Friday, is at 116,000. They have every right to demand decisions be made earlier than usual. And then there is also the never ending dilemma of playoff tickets. For some of the seasons, I only renewed my package for the express reason of being ensured playoff tickets. That won’t be a draw this time.

So…that’s that. I’ve got 2 weeks to make a decision. I start to wonder things like, “If I were to drop the package, could I still effectively write this blog?”, “Is there someone I could split the package with?” and “Even if I do by the tickets…what is the added cost of going to the games going to be next year?”

In this time, with so many people out of work and struggling, I feel selfish that I even have the opportunity to make this decision. But it’s there none-the-less. Having the season ticket package and working two jobs to be able to financially deal with that while at the same time trying to find time to spend with my expanding family and to continue to support this blog is a lot.

I have two weeks to decide…