I think of myself as an astute MoneySaver, with one exception, when it comes to my main passion — West Ham.
Since joining the MSE team nearly a year ago, I’ve saved hundreds of pounds on purchases through using discount codes, taking advantage of flash sales, haggling and researching the best deals.
But football is a different story. I recently received an email from my club, West Ham United, telling me my season ticket will cost £620 next season, a 3.33% increase on this season’s price.
Did I immediately search the internet, hoping to find a discount code? Pointless. Did I email the club and ask if they’d knock a few pounds off as I was such a loyal customer? Waste of time.
You can never switch teams
The problem is football clubs have a massive advantage over other businesses. The passion people feel for their club often overrides any MoneySaving principles and sometimes even logical thinking. The brand loyalty that exists in football is not something you can easily find in other industries.
Sure, one year I could decide to go on a game-by-game basis rather than pay for a whole season. However, I don’t have the luxury of being able to follow a cheaper club… at least not without running the risk of being disowned by certain family members.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy with the value for money I receive from the season ticket, which works out at just under £33 per game. I also like to justify this considerable outlay by reminding myself how frugal I’ve been in other areas over the past year.
However, paying full price for anything these days is not something that sits right by me. Unfortunately, though, as the famous West Ham anthem goes: "Fortune’s always hiding, I’ve looked everywhere…"
Are you another football fan paying huge prices to follow your team? Let us know your thoughts in the discussion below or in our forum.