Mariners offering free tickets as a make-good for opening day concession mess

One of the unfortunate experiences for Mariners fans who attended Friday’s home-opener—well aside from the 4-0 loss—was the huge lines at concession stands, which resulted from a software system crash.

Well the Mariners feel bad if your opening day experience was diminished by long lines (after all, beer is a pretty good distraction when the Mariners aren’t scoring runs) so they are offering free tickets to a home game in April or May for fans who were at the game. Those fans will also get a $5 credit for concession stands.

This isn’t an entirely unprecedented move in Seattle sports in recent years. After the Sounders were embarrassed at home against Los Angeles in 2010, G.M. Adrian Hanauer announced that season ticket holders would get a free game on their 2011 season tickets as a “refund” for that 4-0 loss against the Galaxy.

Below is the full press release from the Mariners, which includes information on how fans can get their free ticket.

The Seattle Mariners are offering free tickets for Mariners home games in April or May, and a credit for concession stands for all fans who attended Opening Night on Friday, April 13. The offer is a make-good for fans who experienced long lines at concession stands during the game due to a failure of the software system that operates cash registers and processes credit cards at Safeco Field.

“We always want our fans to have a positive experience with the Seattle Mariners and Safeco Field. What happened Friday night was unacceptable and I offer my sincere apology to all of the fans who suffered through the long lines and inconvenience. The guest experience on Opening Night was nowhere close to meeting our standards and we want to make it up to our fans,” said Chuck Armstrong, Mariners President and COO.

There are 18 home games in April and May fans can choose from. Here is how the make-good offer will work:

The tickets will be for any Mariners home game in April or May beginning Wednesday, April 18.

The locations will be in the same seating level as the guests’ Opening Night tickets.

Those seated in Suites, Diamond Club, All-Star Club and Hit It Here Café will get the choice of Club or Main Level tickets.

Each make-good ticket will come pre-loaded with a $5 TicketPlu$ credit that can be redeemed at Safeco Field concession stands.

The Mariners have email addresses for most people who purchased tickets for Friday’s game. They will receive information by email on how to receive their free tickets.

Fans who were at the game can claim their free tickets by showing their ticket stub or proof of purchase at any Mariners Team Store or the Safeco Field Box Office.

Anyone who does not have a ticket stub or proof of purchase can call 206-346-4001, the Mariners Customer Service Hotline, between 8:30am-5:30pm for assistance.

More information about the Opening Night ticket make-good offer is available at

The technology provider for the system that operates point of sale transactions at Safeco Field began experiencing isolated problems soon after the gates opened to the public on Friday afternoon. As the evening continued, about half of the 400 point of sale locations were experiencing problems and many were unable to process credit cards. The system was rebooted, but wasn’t up and running until the 8th inning and by that time fans were understandably frustrated and angry with the long lines at concession stands and cash machines.

Staff from the software provider have been doing a thorough review of the system since Friday. “We promise our fans that we will get to the bottom of what caused the failure so that it doesn’t happen again. We hope our fans will give us a second chance to provide a great experience at Safeco Field,” said Armstrong.

There were no problems with the system on Saturday or Sunday.

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