Lighthouse Poole has introduced a new online booking system to enable people to buy accessible tickets more easily.
It means that for the first time, people can book wheelchair spaces and, if needed, a free ticket for their carer/PA, without having to phone Ticket Office or book over the counter.
Lighthouse implemented the new system as part of the redesign of its website after listening to feedback from audiences and a recent ‘secret shopper’ survey carried out by a person with a wheelchair found the venue “exceeded expectations.”
Having set up a Lighthouse account, people who want to book accessible tickets are invited to register their needs from a list. Their responses are then stored as tags on their account so that when they log in to book tickets, they see a venue seating plan tailored to their specific needs highlighting relevant seats. For example, if they need a space for a large wheelchair space those seats will be flagged on the venue seating plan.
In line with industry standards, at least one per cent of capacity in each of the venues at Lighthouse is allocated for accessible seats.
Existing customers who already book accessible tickets have already been invited to register again and update their access requirements. Help is available for those who would like to be talked through the process.
“This project followed a thorough review of our booking processes that we felt is absolutely vital for our customers,” says Tom Shallaker, Lighthouse Fundraising and Ticket Sales Manager.
“It is essential that customers with access requirements are able to book their tickets online just as everybody else can. We’ve been really pleased with the uptake and the feedback from customers so far, and we will continue our work to continue to improve ways that all customers can book tickets.”
The anonymous shopper reported Lighthouse now has one of the simplest booking processes: “I really appreciate this improvement and I’m sure it will improve sales if tickets can be booked immediately without needing to wait to call during box office opening time.
“I recommended Lighthouse to a friend who has Parkinsons. He followed the booking information on the website and filled in the registration form detailing his access requirements. The venue contacted the next morning and confirmed he was now able to book tickets online including a complimentary companion ticket.”