How Do I Get Tickets?
The best place to start is with mypiao.com, which is basically the Chinese equivalent of TicketMaster. You’ll be able to buy tickets in advance of the games, either as an actual ticket which would be delivered to your door by courier (so long as you live within the city) or as an e-ticket. Mypiao has an English-based section on its website and will have a hotline that you can call and speak to an English speaking salesperson.
You can also go to the ticket office at the stadium and buy tickets there. Be forewarned that the staff is unlikely to speak English.
If you get the sudden urge to go to a game, there are obviously touts/scalpers outside the arena who will sell you a ticket. They are also unlikely to speak English. Be prepared to haggle so try to know the prices for the seats you are trying to get in advance.
Ducks tickets were available through Yongle (228.com.cn) or Damai (damai.cn), but according to both websites, tickets are sold out entirely this season. Perhaps it’s due to the Ducks great start or more likely it’s due to Yongle’s shady practices (which any Guoan fan can attest to). Both websites allow you to get on a waiting list, but for most games the waiting list is a couple thousand people long, plus both sites are in Chinese only.
If you are lucky enough to score a ticket through one of the sites, you’ll have to print out the confirmation and code, then exchange it for the actual ticket at an area on the south side of the stadium. Lines are long and there are only two machines to do so, so make sure to arrive a little early if you want to get in for tip-off. Of course the machines are only in Chinese, but there is staff on hand to help out.
Scalpers will be sure to find you the moment you get out of a bus or cab outside the stadium, make sure to bargain hard and check the original price of the tickets. It’s also advisable to have a good idea of what a real ticket looks like so you won’t end up with a fake (though this hasn’t really been a problem, yet!). With Shougang Gymnasium being such an intimate venue and considering how well the Ducks are playing, don’t expect to get these tickets cheap. Another option is to check out Taobao, where you can at least get an idea about prices, tickets are currently going for two to three times face value for most games.
–bcheng, Wild East Football
The Ducks play at Shougang Gymnasium in Shijingshan. Located on the west fifth ring road, the stadium is close to absolutely nothing worthwhile, so be prepared for a long trip (and an expensive taxi fare, if you choose to go that route), especially if you live on the east side of the city.
The best way to get there is by subway. Get on Line 1 and go all the way to BaJiao station. From there, grab a taxi (a real one or a black one) and take the short drive to the stadium. The fare should not be more than 15 kuai.
The Shanghai Sharks play at the Yuanshen Stadium. Its on Line 6 on the Shanghai Metro system and will probably involve you changing at Century Avenue first. The train is always crowded and you will be packed into the carriages but thankfully it is only one stop.
When you get there, take exit 2 and follow the road to the right. Turn right again into the first large gate that you pass on the right-side of the street and then choose the enormous stadium on your left rather than the huge stadium-like building on the right. Follow the road around until you reach the entrance to the arena.
Boom, welcome to the Yuanshen.
Guangsha Lions (Hangzhou):
The Zhejiang Guangsha Lions play at the Hangzhou Basketball Stadium. Unlike other cities, the Lions’ stadium is located smack dab in the middle of the city.
Seeing as the city is still working on finishing it’s subway (going on five years now), the best way to get to the games is by taxi. The address is 210 Ti Yu Chang Road (体育场路), near the intersection of Zhong He Road on the north side of the street. Tickets are sold in front of the stadium for 60, 100 and 150 RMB.
–Edward Bothfeld, Twitter @bothfeef
Jiangsu Dragons (Nanjing):
The Jiangsu Dragons play in Nangang Gymnasium, which is technically located in Nanjing. However Nangang Gymnasium is located in the Luhe District of Nanjing, which lies across the Yangtze River about a 30-45 minute taxi ride (depending on traffic) from the heart of downtown Nanjing. A bus takes about 2 hours so don’t even consider it. There is also no metro line that goes to Luhe, so for an expat taxi is the only option.
However finding a taxi driver who knows how to get there can be hit or miss. A few drivers will immediately know, while most others will whip out their GPS and frantically start calling people for directions. Nangang Gymnasium is basically located in the middle of property owned by a steel company, and very remote.
Here is my suggestion for the non-Chinese speaking expat. Best option – get a Chinese speaking friend to go to the game with you.
Second best option – print the name of Nangang Gymnasium, Luhe District in Chinese characters to show the driver. Then go to Google Maps and get driving directions from the Gulou metro station to Nangang Hotel, which is the best landmark near the arena that the taxi drivers MIGHT know of. The Jiangsu Dragons live in this hotel during the season. (Gulou metro stop is best because it’s a relatively straight shot to Luhe, and simplifies things for the driver.)
In Google Maps copy and paste the Chinese character addresses for Gulou metro station and Nangang Hotel into driving directions on Google.hk Maps. Print out these Chinese-version directions to hand to the taxi driver. This will help them considerably. They might still be confused, but at least it will give them plenty of info to enter into their GPS.
Take your Chinese directions and head to the Gulou metro station. Leave the metro station and walk to the Greenland Financial Center skyscraper (the super tall building). One side of this building (across from McDonald’s) is the entrance to an international hotel. The valets will speak decent English. Act like you are a hotel guest and have them hail a taxi for you. Ask the valets to communicate to the taxi driver where you are trying to go.
Cross your fingers and hope that you get there. Nangang Hotel is about a 5-minute drive from the arena, so once at the hotel you can try to communicate that you want to go to the basketball arena. Good luck with that. If you arrive at a dingy, dilapidated arena you are probably in the right place. You might want to pack rescue flares to help people find you after the game.
Getting back you will most likely have to use a fake taxi since metered taxi’s rarely go to Luhe. Depending on what part of downtown you are trying to get to they will demand 100-120 RMB.
Also it’s worth noting that the Jiangsu Dragons play a bunch of “home” games in different Jiangsu cities. This year it was Xuzhou, but in previous years it was different cities. So double check the location of the game before making the journey.
Foshan Dralions/Long Lions:
The Foshan Dralions/Long Lions play at Lingnan Pearl Stadium in Foshan, Guangdong, which is located at 5 Jihua road, Chancheng district. The stadium has a max capacity of 9500 seats and it is worthwhile watching a home game
The Guangfo subway between Guangzhou and Foshan is a convenient way for fans to get to the stadium. For Guangzhou fans, you can transfer at Xilang Station (Line 1) and take Guangfo Line to Foshan. Get off at Station Pujun Beilu and then take a taxi to the stadium. The subway ticket is less than 10 RMB and the taxi fare will not be above 10 . It takes about 1.5 hours to the stadium if you live at Tianhe, so it’s better to take a book with you to pass the time.
If you drive to the stadium from Tianhe, Guangzhou, it needs about one hour at normal traffic. If you drive from Panyu District, Guangzhou, 30 minutes is enough to get there.
The ticket sell can be found at the Longlions official website: http://www.longlions.com/
Have you been to a CBA game in another city? Do you want to serve the English-speaking Chinese basketball-enthusing ex-pat community by writing a little tutorial about getting to games and buying tickets? Then send me an email at jwpastuszek(at)niubball.com and I’ll post it up with your name, your website, Twitter and/or whatever other means for online self-promotion you have in nice italics underneath your contribution for the entire world to see.