(Not) Buying NT Tickets

I just saw that Russell T Davies is speaking at the National Theatre. I’m a big fan of his work, so I decided to buy tickets. I wandered over to the NT web site and found the event I was looking for. I added a couple of tickets to my shopping basket and went to check out.

The site told me that I have twenty-five minutes to complete my purchase or else my tickets will be made available for anyone else to reserve. It also asked me to log in to complete the transaction.

I start to set up a new user account in order to log in. The system tells me that my email address is being used by an existing account. I must have set one up the last time I bought tickets from them (which was several years ago).

I try a few likely username and password combinations. None of them work. My twenty-five minutes is ticking away. I click on the “forgotten password” link. The site promises to send me my login details.

I wait. And wait. And wait.

I check my “potential spam” folder. I check my “definitely spam” folder. No sign of the promised email. My twenty-five minutes is almost up.

With a couple of minutes to go I have a brilliant idea and register with another email address. Somehow I manage to go through the procedure within the time remaining and successfully purchase the tickets.

Instantly after registering as a new user, I get a “thank you for your registration” mail. The promised password details email is still missing somewhere. There’s apparently an email receipt en route to me too. I don’t hold out too much hope.

Why do web sites make this so difficult?

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