Katie Lamotta Raleigh’s Holiday Express has become increasingly popular, with thousands of eager attendees vying for tickets that consistently sell out on the same day they are released. Tickets for this year’s enchanting holiday train ride will be available for purchase on Wednesday, October 4th. Katie Lamotta, a devoted attendee who has brought her three children to this annual event for years, shared some valuable tips on securing tickets.
“I love witnessing their excitement when they discover something new or realize there are countless activities to enjoy,” she expressed. “It’s like having four or five hours of non-stop fun and exploration. Establishing this tradition, something we do every year, is truly special.” This year, there will be a total of 30,000 tickets available to accommodate the enthusiastic holiday-goers.
Get Ready with Your Supplies: Take a moment to prepare before the ticket queue opens. Tickets are available for purchase through the city of Raleigh’s RecLink website, the same platform used for registering for city summer camps and sports leagues. Ensure that you have your RecLink username and password ready and that you are logged in. If this is your first time, make sure you’ve created an account. Grab your preferred caffeinated beverage, make sure your laptop is plugged in, and have your credit card at hand. Also, double-check your calendar for any potential conflicts and be aware of the Holiday Express event dates (Nov. 29-Dec. 15).
Join the Queue at 8:45 A.M.: Ticket sales begin on Wednesday, Oct. 4. The city of Raleigh is using a randomized queue system for the second year. Therefore, it’s crucial that you are in the queue between 8:45 a.m. and 9 a.m., during the 15-minute window when tickets become available for purchase.
Katie Lamotta If you enter the queue after 9 a.m., you will be positioned at the end of the line, according to Cara McLeod, a spokesperson for the city. In 2019, tickets were completely sold out in less than 15 minutes.
Be Prepared for a Wait: Once you’ve entered the online queue, be prepared for a wait. “You can’t exit the line,” Katie Lamotta emphasized. “You simply have to stay in line and wait it out. I actually found myself on a work call when I finally reached the front of the line last year. I had to tell my boss, ‘Just give me a moment to purchase these tickets.'”
Katie Lamotta mentioned that waiting in the ticket queue took approximately an hour. Regrettably, there may be instances when you lose access to the website. If this occurs, you will need to re-enter the queue through RecLink.
Don’t Worry if You Miss Out:
It’s important to note that not everyone will secure a ticket. However, missing out initially doesn’t necessarily mean you’re completely out of luck.
“If you don’t manage to secure tickets, it’s really not the end of the world,” Katie Lamotta reassured. “I feel like many people may think it is, but there will be plenty of individuals who purchased tickets for the wrong night or can’t attend at the last minute. Opportunities will definitely arise to purchase tickets from others. So, don’t panic. It’s a delightful activity for the kids, but it’s not the only thing Raleigh has to offer.”
While the tickets themselves are non-refundable, they are transferable among guests (within the same night), and last-minute opportunities may emerge on social media platforms. There is a private Facebook group called “Raleigh Area December Holiday Events including Holiday Express” where people exchange or sell tickets they can no longer use. Additionally, tickets may become available in certain local parent Facebook groups.
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