After extensive consultation with the relevant governing bodies and the official Supporters’ Trust, Nottingham Forest are now able to provide the following information to supporters on their 2020-21 season card purchase.
The 2020-21 Sky Bet Championship season begins on Saturday with an away game at QPR, followed by the first home game of the season against Cardiff City on Saturday 19th September. At the time of this update, the Cardiff match will be played behind-closed-doors with no access for supporters in any capacity.
Whilst there is hope and an expectation that a reduced number of supporters will be able to return to The City Ground from October, this is yet to be confirmed by the relevant governing bodies. In the event that a percentage of spectators are allowed access inside The City Ground, the club will introduce a ticket ballot process for season card holders who will have the option to opt into a ballot for their chance to attend.
The club have been working with the EFL, the Sports Ground Safety Authority (SGSA) and the Safety Advisory Group (SAG) to understand how to make The City Ground a safe environment for supporters once a return date is confirmed.
After recent pilot events at other sporting venues, including the friendly fixture between Brighton and Chelsea last week, were deemed successful, the club are optimistic that fans will be able to return from Saturday 3rd October for the fixture against Bristol City at The City Ground, but further guidance from the relevant authorities is needed before any confirmation.
The club's surveys and consultations suggest that between 7,000-8,000 seats will be made available during the initial phase, and with around 16,000 season card holders signed up for the 2020-21 season, the club estimates that season card holders will be able to attend one in two home games. As further restrictions are lifted over time, further increases in capacity are expected.
With this in mind, the club are offering season card holders what is believed to be the best possible solution in the current challenging circumstances. The club believes there is a strong chance that only season card holders will be able to attend matches for the whole season and, therefore, propose the following two options:
Option 1: Exclusive ticket ballot and iFollow bundle
- Season card holders enter an online ticket ballot for each home fixture in which fans are able to be accommodated.
- Season card holders receive an iFollow code for all 23 home and seven midweek away matches. This includes junior and child season card holders
- For each game at The City Ground available for supporters to attend, the club will ask supporters to enter an online ballot for available tickets. The club would encourage fans to enter in their social bubbles to maximize available seat capacity.
- For the first game, the ticketing system will randomly select successful applicants and automatically allocate seats. This means it is unlikely that if successful you would be allocated your current season card seat. However, the system is sophisticated enough that it will select the next best alternative in a similar price category.
- Supporters who are unsuccessful or chose not to participate in the ballot will receive an iFollow code for that game.
- In addition, should you apply for the ballot for the second game, it will automatically prioritise you for that fixture and the club would expect you to be successful in this ballot.
- This cycle would continue until the guidance and/or available capacity changes.
- In some cases, if the number of people entered into a ballot is lower than expected, there is a chance some fans may be allocated tickets to more than one in two matches.
- For supporters who accept this option, the club are pleased to guarantee a price freeze for season card renewals in the 2021-22 season.
Option 2: Rolling refund
- Season card holders can elect to receive a pro-rata refund for their season card on an ongoing basis.
- Season card holders will receive a refund until stadium capacity is increased to allow all season card holders in to all matches or until the end of the 2020-21 season, whichever occurs soonest.
- As a result of the negotiations between the EFL and Sky Sports, the club will not be able to offer any iFollow access codes for home and midweek away games to supporters who select this option.
- It is not possible for an adult season card holder who attends matches with children to select a refund option on the adult season card but retain the ticket ballot and iFollow option on the child season card.
- Supporters will be able to renew their existing season card seat for the 2021-22 season when the process commences.
The default position for all season card holders is that they will be automatically selected to receive Option 1 (ticket ballot and iFollow package) unless they indicate otherwise to the club.
To request the rolling refund option and to forego any season card benefits, please log-in to your Ticketmaster account at https://www.eticketing.co.uk/nottinghamforest and select the refund option on your account. Please ensure this is done for EVERY season card you wish to refund and not just the lead booker. Supporters are also advised that their choice covers the duration of the 2020-21 season and cannot be changed at a later date.
The club has set a deadline for fans to confirm their option by Wednesday 23rd September so there is sufficient time to complete a ticket ballot process ahead of the fixture against Bristol City on Saturday 3rd October (subject to government guidance).
In addition, the club have set this date as a deadline for any supporters wishing to renew their 2020-21 season card but have yet to do so.
For the forthcoming Cardiff City fixture, the club shall send iFollow codes to all season card holders who have selected Option 1 or have yet to make a decision.
If you need assistance logging in to your account, please email email@example.com. The ticket office phone lines and counters remain closed due to Covid restrictions.
Should your circumstances mean that you would like to request a refund for the full season, please email the ticket office at firstname.lastname@example.org.