Crunchyroll Expo Australia Grapples With Capacity Crowds, Long Queue Times On Day One [Updated]

Crunchyroll Expo Australia Grapples With Capacity Crowds, Long Queue Times On Day One [Updated]

Update 2:08pm 21/9/22: Regarding last weekend’s capacity issues and long queues, Crunchyroll has provided the following statement to Kotaku Australia:

Fan safety is priority #1, and we did our best to safely get everyone inside for a fabulous time. We worked tirelessly throughout the weekend with our venue and facility partners for a solution to accommodate all ticketed patrons. We know everyone was excited about celebrating anime together.

We had no issues with guest entry on Sunday. However, for anyone who could not or did not enter the venue, we will honor refund requests. We will offer full refunds to those not able to use their tickets, and partial refunds to those with weekend tickets who are not able to use the Saturday portion of their ticket. Any unclaimed guests tokens will also be refunded.

Original story continues below.

The inaugural Crunchyroll Expo Australia anime convention has found itself with a big problem to solve on its opening day.

The US convention’s first Australian outing was dogged by long queues for entry, leaving punters, some in full cosplay, waiting outside the centre for as many as five hours. Though we were not able to get confirmation on it, this was seemingly a result of the venue reaching capacity limits earlier in the day. After that, getting in had necessarily been reduced to a one-in, one-out situation.

Things worsened in the afternoon as a storm rolled over Melbourne, pushing the lines against the glass outside the convention centre. What had been a relatively organised queue lost its structure, leaving punters unclear on their position in the line or even which way the line should be moving.

Adding to the confusion, at the time of writing, and despite notices stating the show had sold out, punters on Twitter noticed that Crunchyroll Expo Aus still appeared to be selling weekend and single-day tickets for Saturday despite being unable to let more people in. A quick check of Tixr at the time of writing revealed that these passes were indeed still on sale. This was later confirmed to be a systems glitch connected to refunds. As tickets were refunded within the venue, the system considered them available again and so was putting them back up on Tixr. Kotaku Australia understands that this wasn’t actually supposed to happen, and has since been rectified.

As the day wore on, the punters lined up outside began taking their frustrations to Twitter. The #crunchyrollexpo hashtag began to fill with expressions of anger and disbelief from punters caught in the downpour, some of whom had booked hotels and flown in from interstate for Q&As and signings, only to be left stranded outside the venue.



Kotaku Australia has reached out to Crunchyroll Expo Australia for comment. We’ll update you when we know more.

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