Road to PyeongChang 2018 (Issue #8)

Here are the highlights on the Road to PyeongChang from the past week:

Cheetos hits the mark with their sponsorship of the USA Curling team…
Cheetos, The Experts In Cheese Curls, Announce First-of-its-Kind Partnership With USA Curling. October 24th. Cheetos clearly won the week on the sponsorship front with the “punny” announcement that combines the power of their cheese curl in partnership with the Team USA curling team. Featuring the famous Chester the Cheetah and NFL Football player Vernon Davis, Cheetos has picked up quite the media following both in Olympic circles and in the advertising and media space. Earlier this year, White Castle made a similar play in partnership with the Team USA Luge team as they had a search for “sliders” to team up the famous tiny burgers with sliding athletes.

Cheetos is sponsoring USA Curling!

Milk gets in on the Olympic Sponsorship fun announcing their roster of 30 athletes…
Team USA Athletes Fuel Path To Olympic And Paralympic Winter Games PyeongChang 2018 With Milk. October 27th Team Milk, as it is being called, was announced today that 30 Olympic and Paralympic athletes from Team USA joined in partnership with milk. The new Milk Life campaign will highlight these athletes use of milk as a staple in their training regimens.

Team Milk Partnering with Team USA

Ticket sales continue to be a concern for organizers, but a major boost for fans attending…
Only 0.2 pct. of PyeongChang Paralympics tickets sold: lawmaker. October 27th. Olympic and Paralympic tickets for PyeongChang 2018 continue to concern organizers. In revised ticket sales numbers, thus far only 25.8% of the tickets for the Winter Olympics have been sold. This is down from the 30.3% mentioned earlier in the month. If you are still considering going to PyeongChang, the great news is that you should be able to see the events you want since we are less than 4 months out.

In other sponsorship news…Bridgestone, Rule 40.3, and KEPCO joins in…
Rounding out the sponsorship news this week: Bridgestone continues to expand their Olympic sponsorship adding a presenting sponsorship for Eurosport to their already deep portfolio. KEPCO, a major utility in South Korea, became a Tier 1 PyeongChang sponsor. And, lastly in Germany, the government is challenging Rule 40 which restricts athletes sponsorships. This is one to watch as it could have impact not only on PyeongChang but also every future Olympics.

WSJ does an in-depth video piece on preparation for the PyeongChang games…
October 25th. Take a few minutes of your time to watch this 4-minute video from the Wall Street Journal. On the scene in PyeongChang, they take a look at the preparations in progress for the upcoming games in February from taxi drivers to local hoteliers. It’s really interesting.

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

  • I’ll get to the bottom of it! No changes in inventory this week on the major hotel websites, with still some limited hotel rooms available for those traveling to the games. Many are wondering where all these hotels and hotel rooms are given last week’s revelation that 90% of hotels in the Olympic cities do not have a single room booked. Recent news indicates that hotels are starting to pop-up on as the local government works with owners to post them. More to come after next week when I am there.
  • Traffic to be heaviest February 15-17 in PyeongChang. If you plan on driving in South Korea during the Olympic Games, be aware that you may need to plan more travel time February 15th-17th. Traffic is expected to be extra heavy these days as it coincides with a major holiday for South Korea, the Lunar New Year. Make sure to plan ahead.
  • Flight prices remain flat and relatively cheap to get you to South Korea:Flights remain surprisingly inexpensive. Round-trip decreased to $615 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 $669.
  • PyeongChang 2018 Ticket Site Watch: Last week the PyeongChang 2018’s ticketing website opened up world-wide. 90% of events are available for immediate purchase and you have your choice of pick-up, print-at-home, and mobile ticketing. The remaining 10% still have tickets available, but are in a “preparing for sale” state and will likely be available in the near future.
  • Authorized Ticket Resellers Watch: With the news last week on the PyeongChang 2018 ticketing site, 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 ATRSs 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