View Full Version : For Teams Who Flew To Nationals Last Year
02-13-2012, 07:21 PM
For those of you who flew to Madison last year, when did you book your tickets. Did you book only after you were confirmed to be going to nationals? Or did you "more than likely expect" or have your league director maybe tip you off in advance (if that makes sense, or if that happens?) that you would be going, in which case buy in advance?
I only ask because I think there is a good chance we will be invited to nationals this year, and looking right now, plane tickets are ~$275. But by the time regionals and invites roll around that will be what, 4-ish weeks from now, I'm sure plane tickets will be up to at least 400. And then we start to run into money issues as a team, esp. the added cost of sending out all our hockey gear on top of bags.
Just wondering what the teams did last year. We are looking into fundraising but I'm very pessimistic we will raise more than $500.
02-13-2012, 07:46 PM
We booked ours immeditately after they announced who was going. Too risky to book in advance and risk the chance at not making it and having to pay cancellation fees. Depending on how many guys you take with, you may be able to qualify for discounted rates.
02-13-2012, 10:47 PM
I mean you can pretty much tell if your going to make nationals or not. If your one of the bubble teams i mean I guess you could wait. 24 teams went last yr and they have like 4 alternates in case teams cant go which there are always 2-3 teams that cant. So i mean usually if you have 20+ pts by the end of the season your probably going to be invited to nationals. Its not set in stone but its most likely the case. So its a tough call but if your first or second in your division you can book it now.
02-14-2012, 01:40 PM
It depends on how your region nominates candidates for nationals. In WCRHL, I believe the team with the best overall record gets an auto bid and the winner of the Regional Championship tournament gets an auto bid. After that, there's no guarantee that ANY team will get a bid.
For Example: In 2007, my team (Cal Poly SLO) finished 2nd overall (10-4-4) behind UC Irvine (12-4-2) then choked at regionals and lost to the #6 seeded team, Chapman (7-10-1) in the semi-fianls, in overtime, from a trick Michigan play. #4 seed CSU San Bernadino upset UC Irvine in the semis and then Chapman lost to CSU San Bernadino in the Finals. That changed the bid order to:
1) UC Irvine - Regular Season Auto-bid
2) CSUSB - Regionals Auto-bid
3) Chapman - Regionals Runner-Up
4) Cal Poly SLO - Regionals 2nd Runner-Up
Because of Chapman's poor regular season record we were stuck behind them until they were selected...which they weren't until the 2nd alternate and then Cal Poly SLO was selected immediately after. CSUSB ended up being the only school from the WCRHL to attend nationals that year because UC Irvine declined to go because they only had 5 skaters and a goalie.
We had NEVER missed nationals before and we were VERY confident that we wouldn't be left out this particular year even with a 4th bid because the WCRHL had usually sent 4 teams to nationals every year.
Moral of the story: Don't buy your tickets in advance because you never know what's going to happen unless you earn an auto-bid for regular season.
As you can tell, I'm still annoyed by the events that transpired in March 2007...but I'm glad we didn't buy our tickets in advance!
02-14-2012, 03:20 PM
It is always a risky game to book or not to book. I would check the airlines on what the policy is before booking anything, worse comes to worse you might end up paying $50 to change your flight. I had to do that for nationals in St. Louis, I booked a flight to Ireland instead since I didn't think we would make it, when we made it - we ended up driving so I paid $50 and they credited what I paid for the flight in a voucher that I had a year to use. I ended up using that voucher to fly out to Colorado the following year for nationals.
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