The Ultimate Champs Survival Guide

by TREVANN HAMILTON

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

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The Boys and Girls Athletic Championship, more popularly known as 'Champs' begins today! If you're thinking of going but anxious about what to expect, the amount of money it's going to cost, or even the crowd size; don't worry, we're here to calm your fears with our survival guide.
Here's what you need to know:
Firstly, you'll need to know where the event is being held, when and how much tickets cost.
Champs lasts for five days. This year it's from Tuesday March 26 to Saturday March 30. Tickets go on sale today at the National Stadium. The first day is totally free and there are special discounts for teens in uniform for the following days: Wednesday and Thursday ($100), and Friday- ($350 - bleachers only).
On Saturday there are no special offers for teens. The grandstand tickets are $7500 and the bleachers are $1500. So if you're a high-schooler and wanted to go on a budget, your total for all five days will be $2050.
Now that we've gotten the basic information out of the way, here are some useful tips:
Buy your tickets early
Don't underestimate how quickly Champs tickets can be sold out. You'll usually be fine on the weekdays when you go with your school, but I suggest you buy your Saturday tickets from the Friday evening to avoid the tickets being sold out before you've gotten a chance to purchase.
Buy your tickets from the authorized sellers
You'll be confronted with people trying to sell you champs tickets right outside the stadium. Walk past them and buy your tickets at the windows please.
Arrive early on Saturday
Don't wait until night to go to the National Stadium on Saturday unless you've got grandstand tickets. Why? All the good seats will be gone and you've probably missed a lot of the excitement. Get your money's worth! Also people have been locked out of the stadium before because it was full to capacity. Don't let that happen to you.
Carry an umbrella and sunscreen
While the big umbrellas (walking stick type) are banned, small ones aren't and the sun isn't playing in the National Stadium. The last thing you want is to be hot and miserable (or worse, end up with a sunburn). Protect yourself from the sun, guys, your skin will thank you.
Carry your snacks
Don't worry, there will be plenty of food being sold at the venue but champs is a 'whole day ting'. Don't spend off yuh likkle lunch money buying food all day. Carry some snacks to supplement it and then support the authorized vendors. The same thing goes for water. It's better to carry your own bottle of water and buy water later in the day as needed. Save your coins. Take special note of the brands allowed and not allowed into the stadium.*
Wear your colours
While you'd be in your school uniform in the weekday, don't stress about what to wear on the Saturday. Just wear your school colours. We know in the past there were more violent flair ups regarding school colours at Champs but this has cooled down in recent years thanksto the Peace for Champs initiative.
Be mindful of your surroundings
There is usually a huge crowd at champs and things can go missing in huge crowds. Make sure you go with a friend or a couple friends so that you can watch each other's back. Don't leave your bags and walk off and make sure you know where your phone is at all times. There are usually many security personnel present but better to be safe than sorry.
Walk with your bus fare
JUTC buses are usually parked outside the National Stadium ready to carry you to popular destinations such as Portmore, Downtown and Half Way Tree for $100. In my experience they pack up and leave quicker than a lot of the people who drove and were stuck in traffic outside the stadium, so it's a pretty good option.
Have fun!
Champs only comes once per year and is filled with excitement and wonderful track and field. Buy your vuvuzela, dress up and support your school!
For more information on ticket prices and what is and isn't allowed you cant visit @issasportsja on Instagram.

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