Road to PyeongChang 2018 (Issue #10)

Amazing trip! I am on my way back to the United States after touring the Olympic sites in PyeongChang and Gangneung here in South Korea last week. Thanks to all who followed my live blog but if you missed it, you catch up here.

The Ultimate Guide to PyeongChang 2018, launching on December 15th!
With my experiences visiting and touring South Korea and taking over one thousand pictures and videos — get ready for my upcoming Ultimate Guide to PyeongChang 2018 launching in just a few weeks. It will have all of the latest info and travel tips on hotels, transportation, travel time between venues, dining options and other must-see attractions between Olympic events, and general tips on mobile phones, Internet access and more! Follow me here or on Twitter @KenHanscom to find out everything everything you need to know to be ready and have a great time at PyeongChang 2018.

Now let’s get to the news this week with only 90 days to go…

Heineken House announces venue and opens ticket sales, Slovenia and other houses prepare…
Previewing the 2018 Winter Olympics’ Holland Heineken House. November 7th.The Heineken House, easily the most popular and possibly the most fun house each and every Olympic Games, have provided a preview of their house which will be located less than two miles from Gangeung venue cluster, near the sea. Tickets are available now in the only house where every single medal winner is celebrated and the Dutch are expected to win big on the oval track for PyeongChang. In addition, Slovenia announced their house will be open to fans and will be located in the mountain cluster area of Alpensia / YongPyong area near where other countries have located theirs such as the United States, Austria, Switzerland, and Germany.

After K-POP concert, PyeongChang Olympic Stadium receives criticism for being too cold…
Pyeongchang Winter Olympics Will Be Cold. Get Over It. November 9th During the November 7th concert in the newly constructed PyeongChang Olympic Stadium, several concert goers were treated for hypothermia. Concerns have been raised with the PyeongChang 2018 organizers about the lack protection from the elements in the historically windy area and what it could possibly mean for the opening and closing ceremonies.

With wearable payment technology, Visa makes sure that fans will stay warm when making purchases at PyeongChang 2018…
Visa Introduces New Payment Wearables for Fans Attending the Olympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018. November 8th Introducing three wearable payment technologies for the upcoming Olympics, Visa is making it easier to make payments. Offering options between a commemorative Olympic pin, payment-enabled gloves, and a sticker — fans will have their choice in ways to make payments without needing to fumble for cash or credit cards while staying warm in the cold temperatures. Available in vending machines at Olympic Superstores, these are sure to be popular since Visa, as the official sponsor, is the only way to pay.

Toyota questioned about lack of progress for mobility campaign…
When disability tech is just a marketing exercise. November 8th Toyota is being asked about their plans for the iBOT technology which is the central piece of the “mobility for all” campaign that launched in the run-up to PyeongChang 2018. Read the full article here.

Intel Extreme Masters eSports competition comes to PyeongChang 2018 at the Winter Olympic Games…
Intel announces IEM PyeongChang ahead of the Olympic Winter Games.November 6th. Intel’s announcement of the competition will provide the opportunity for Olympic fans to experience eSports competition at PyeongChang 2018. Wrapping up on the same day as Opening Ceremony, the small overlap coincides in recent conversation and speculation about eSports possible inclusion in future Olympic Games. Read all the details here.

Latest Road to PyeongChang bits and bytes for fans who are planning or hoping to attend:

  • Hotel availability will be challenging for the foreseeable future. A recent article stated 90% of hotels have no bookings for the Olympics. After visiting over 2 dozen hotels in the PyeongChang and Gangneung areas, not a single hotel or resort had any available rooms. This may change as we get closer to the start of the Winter Games and unsold inventory is released, but for now your best option is to check
  • Flight prices take a big jump this week to get you to South Korea:Flights remain surprisingly inexpensive. Round-trip increased by over $150 to $759 from Los Angeles to Seoul, South Korea on Hong Kong Airlines departing February 6th and returning February 16th, enough time to see the Opening Ceremonies and several marquee events. NOTE: Last week, prices were $595.
  • PyeongChang 2018 Ticket Site Watch: 90% of events are available for immediate purchase and you have your choice of pick-up, print-at-home, and mobile ticketing. A larger release of high demand tickets such as men’s figure skating went on sale last Monday, November 6th and quickly sold out. Tickets can now be purchased at Box Office locations, at Tickets. and via the Fan-to-Fan exchange. Be sure to check both the sale and fan resale sites before purchasing.
  • Authorized Ticket Resellers Watch: With the news a few weeks back on the PyeongChang 2018 ticketing site, I anticipated the focus for Authorized Resellers will likely shift to focus only on packages inclusive of hotel rooms, hospitality, and tickets. The reason? The PyeongChang 2018 offers lower prices and more options for delivery of tickets. I will continue to track ticket availability through ATRs which remains largely unchanged with most events having available inventory from both Cosport (USA) and Dertour (Germany/EU).

Ken is the Chief Operating Officer at InviteManager. He has been featured in the International Business Times, MSN, Yahoo Sports, ThePostGame, USA Today and ESPN. For more information, you can follow Ken’s blog, connect via Twitter or email him at