Valve Refunds TI10 Tickets as Romanian COVID-19 Situation Worsens
TI10’s $40 million-plus prize pool makes the Dota 2 event one of the largest esports spectacles of the year. The world’s best teams converge in one location to combat for the right to be called one of Dota 2’s finest, along with enough earnings in prize money to justify a year of inactivity. Recently, Valve announced that tickets for in-person attendance would be sold for TI10, but it seems as though this will no longer be the case as conditions in Bucharest worsen for both teams and attendees.
TI10 Tickets Canceled and Refunded Due to Increased COVID-19 Restrictions
According to an announcement on Valve’s Dota 2 blog, Valve has canceled ticket sales for TI10 and will refund ticket-holders for those who have already purchased tickets for the event.
“We want nothing more than to welcome fans live to the event,” says the post, “but we can no longer do so in a way that allows us to prioritize the health and well-being of both audience members and participants.”
News of ticket cancellations and refunds for TI10 comes on the heels of Chinese Dota 2 team Team Aster contracting COVID-19 during their bootcamp for the event. Unfortunately, the infection spread to Invictus Gaming’s team members, according to posts on their official Twitter account. Other Chinese teams have also tested for possible COVID-19 infection and thankfully have not reported any new cases among their teams.
Confirmed COVID-19 cases for Romania have reached a new peak, with over 12,000 confirmed cases reported on October 2 by the World Health Organization. According to the Associated Press, the rising transmission of COVID-19 has encouraged Romania’s government to institute new restrictions that have seen resistance and outcry on behalf of Romania’s far-right. Over 5,000 protestors arrived in Bucharest this past Saturday to denounce the country’s pandemic measures and policies as hospitals across the country remained at or above capacity.
With situations worsening in Bucharest, Valve’s decision to cancel ticket sales and refund purchased tickets for TI10 seems reasonable. Still, many have already traveled only to find out their reason for travel has now been canceled. Many in the replies of this announcement on Twitter have mentioned the obstacles they had to go through to arrive in Bucharest and mentioned their non-refundable hotels and plane tickets. Indeed, the situation has left many who traveled to Bucharest with little recourse.
It’s a shame the event will have to go on without the crowd, and it shines a light on how easily plans can be dashed due to the circumstances created by COVID-19. Hopefully, fans will be able to recoup their losses and can receive their TI10 ticket refunds soon.