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View Full Version : Do you know need to pay to support Palace?!


Billyd
19-09-2016, 10:27 AM
So due to work commitments I can no longer get a season ticket.

I have however decided to spend the money instead this season on going to a few more 'obscure' away games at grounds ive not done before. Everton, Hull and Stoke being my initial thoughts.

So 3 of us (all in similar positions) decide to book to go to Everton. Phone up to get tickets, and turns out apparently we need to spend 25 or 55 on a memberships. When I asked why, lady said it was to prove to I was a Palace fan. I said I have over 3000 loyalty points. She couldnt really answer and her response was it was now policy 'members only for away tickets too'. So decided to leave it.

I assumed she must have got something wrong - so have just checked online and yes, even the likes of Sunderland (where we sold under 500 tickets) is members only.

I totally get it for the likes the more popular away games like Arsenal. But making it members only for these others game that will not sell out is just pure greed from the club.

Anyway, wont be going now and thanks to the policy the away end will have less support for the team.

Is it me or is this totally bonkers from the club?

switchboard
19-09-2016, 10:32 AM
In the same boat, refuse to pay it. My daughter is itching to go to her first home game after we did some away preseason games but I can't afford to pay for 2 memberships and then match tickets on top.

Chillo
19-09-2016, 10:33 AM
It's you.

Club has decided to have a policy of payment for membership; membership is needed to buy tickets.

Billyd
19-09-2016, 10:38 AM
It's you.

Club has decided to have a policy of payment for membership; membership is needed to buy tickets.

Do you think its right?

Golf Boy
19-09-2016, 10:42 AM
Can season ticket holders get tickets for friends?

Wolfnipplechips
19-09-2016, 10:42 AM
Do you think its right?

No

in-exile
19-09-2016, 10:43 AM
Do you think its right?No.... Palace doesn't feel home anymore...they wanted/needed us in the championship, its just not the same for awhile now..:(

ExiledStirling
19-09-2016, 10:48 AM
I do not think it is for the reason of fleecing the fans but more to stop turning up at Man U away and finding yourselves surrounded by Man U fans.

Billy maybe just get someone with a membership who are not going to the games you want to attend to get the tickets for you. Hopefully anyone on here with a membership and not going to the games you mention will PM you.

All the best with it.

Twilko
19-09-2016, 10:54 AM
In the same boat, refuse to pay it. My daughter is itching to go to her first home game after we did some away preseason games but I can't afford to pay for 2 memberships and then match tickets on top.

Assuming it's just you and your daughter then you would only need one membership. Even catagory A games like West Ham allow 2 tickets per membership. Still makes it pricey for a one off game of course.

Surely nearly all Palace fans must know a season ticket holder or at least a member though? If someone isn't a member and just wants to do Sunderland away or something that we probably won't sell out, then it must be easy enough to find someone to get you tickets. Against the rules, but I don't think anyone would begrudge actual fans getting a seat that would otherwise be empty.

The ideal solution would be to have a final round of tickets on sale for anyone with a booking history, even if they don't have an active membership.

Billyd
19-09-2016, 11:12 AM
I do not think it is for the reason of fleecing the fans but more to stop turning up at Man U away and finding yourselves surrounded by Man U fans.

Billy maybe just get someone with a membership who are not going to the games you want to attend to get the tickets for you. Hopefully anyone on here with a membership and not going to the games you mention will PM you.

All the best with it.

On the first point. Why not just allow people with a booking history for those type of games? Besides ive very seldom heard of home fans in with away fans!

On the other point, that was other plan. However out of principle we are not going.

Put it this way (if I did use someone elses membership). Id be spending 70-80 on fuel. 30 match ticket. 60 accommodation. Not forgetting food, drink and being a night away from wife and baby. All for 0 loyalty points. Yet you spend 55 on a Gold membership. Get 200 loyalty points. I think that tells you everything where the club sees its priority now - . Shame.

Chrissayy
19-09-2016, 11:17 AM
Yeah I had to pay 25 to buy a ticket to go yesterday when I'm going to be out of the country November-April! Annoying but not much choice in the matter really.

dannyb1
19-09-2016, 11:22 AM
I thought it should be free to ST holders and gold members or 10 on top of a silver one.

tasty_snacks
19-09-2016, 11:22 AM
The carrot for membership is the point system. Just think what would happen if we got to another FA cup final. You're in real danger of missing out.

No reason why membership can't be free - rebate cost of joining over two/three away games.

I can't believe there are any Palace fans who want to go to more obscure matches that have not got a membership/ ST or do not know anyone that does. Though I accept that's not the point.

cpfcfly
19-09-2016, 11:22 AM
I do not think it is for the reason of fleecing the fans but more to stop turning up at Man U away and finding yourselves surrounded by Man U fans.

Billy maybe just get someone with a membership who are not going to the games you want to attend to get the tickets for you. Hopefully anyone on here with a membership and not going to the games you mention will PM you.

All the best with it.

With Man Utd away it makes sense, but for Sunderland away, Everton away, even Burnley away we should be opening up for people who have client reference numbers above a certain number of points just to get more people in.

The real problem is that away tickets don't make our club money, memberships do, and we can dictate how we sell those tickets. This ultimately means that through forcing people to buy memberships the club makes money on selling away tickets. Whether this is morally right is questionable for games like Everton and Sunderland, but is useful for the bigger games.

There needs to be a balance.

ExiledStirling
19-09-2016, 11:27 AM
On the first point. Why not just allow people with a booking history for those type of games? Besides ive very seldom heard of home fans in with away fans!

On the other point, that was other plan. However out of principle we are not going.

Put it this way (if I did use someone elses membership). Id be spending 70-80 on fuel. 30 match ticket. 60 accommodation. Not forgetting food, drink and being a night away from wife and baby. All for 0 loyalty points. Yet you spend 55 on a Gold membership. Get 200 loyalty points. I think that tells you everything where the club sees its priority now - . Shame.
Yes fair point re booking history. Had not thought of that. Maybe PM CPFC2010 and raise it with them and see if they can do something?

Oli28
19-09-2016, 11:29 AM
Memberships should be free if you've got 200+ points

Raggy
19-09-2016, 11:32 AM
Lots of people suffering from this daft rule - people who may not be able to have a season ticket any more, but have followed Palace through thick and thin (mostly thin).

Loyalty goes both ways. I wonder how many of them will come back if the club eventually drops back to the championship and suddenly decides it *needs* them again.

Kidofwonder
19-09-2016, 11:36 AM
It's to stop touts I think, the overall implementation is a little off but I see the logic

Bubble Wrap
19-09-2016, 11:51 AM
It's to stop touts I think, the overall implementation is a little off but I see the logic

It doesn't stop them though. Most touts buy Season Tickets sell the big games at a big mark up and the lesser games at face value.
Only reason the club insist on memberships is so they can make more money out of you.

Am Phibian
19-09-2016, 11:53 AM
But how are we going to compete against....blah, blah, blah.

Away Travel Club worked fine in the 70's and 80's without the need to rip off the fans.

All Palace are doing is copying other clubs' greed and immoral business practices in fleecing the supporters.

I had hoped we would be different due to who bought the club but, alas, we are not.

Billyd
19-09-2016, 12:36 PM
But how are we going to compete against....blah, blah, blah.

Away Travel Club worked fine in the 70's and 80's without the need to rip off the fans.

All Palace are doing is copying other clubs' greed and immoral business practices in fleecing the supporters.

I had hoped we would be different due to who bought the club but, alas, we are not.

Funny thing is, and just checked a few clubs. I cant see too many clubs restricting away ends, especially one that will never sell out!

Only seems to be in operation with those clubs that could sell out every away end 5 times over each game.

Seems its mostly a Palace money making operation.

ebyeeckeagle
19-09-2016, 01:18 PM
No problem with a proper membership system. Free for kids, a modest fee for adults (10 maybe). Good marketing tool also. Then tickets should be sold on the basis of a points system (which are only awarded for tickets bought, not items of merchandise). And perhaps with a bit of thought to the level of points for the game in question, rather than the blanket crap so far.

My son now plays Saturday afternoons, so getting to away matches is tricky. So not bothering with the membership. And using other's references is okay, but sometimes they are yet to decide when to go, so planning just becomes difficult.

Stroud Eagle
19-09-2016, 05:02 PM
It doesn't stop them though. Most touts buy Season Tickets sell the big games at a big mark up and the lesser games at face value.
Only reason the club insist on memberships is so they can make more money out of you.

Loads of empty seats again on sunday.My son and daughter who would like to come with us occasionally can no longer get tickets, even when there are plenty of empty seats.

gold76
19-09-2016, 06:48 PM
A tough ask for me these days, last year of the championship, you could just rock up on the day, queue in the clubshop and pay something like 20 or 25

Now it's a question (I beleive) of 25 to become a member, then if you want to go to an A game, you have to buy a B game as well.

Won't get much change out of 100 before you start!

I'm not local anymore neither, so alas, trips to Selhurst are a rarity these days.

Chunt
19-09-2016, 06:54 PM
Had a similar case recently, can't make it that regularly to Palace games now, a couple of friends got in touch saying they fancied going to a game and I thought I'd go along with them as a treat - then found out about this membership nonsense and as a result none of us will go. Absolutely refuse to pay for a membership considering I've been going to Palace for well over a decade.

delboy01
19-09-2016, 06:58 PM
If I'm honest it does seem a bit unfair that someone's change in circumstances means that they can't get to see palace games after being loyal for years.

Maybe a membership for long standing fans with xxxx points that only entitles them to order tickets.

Pistol Knight
19-09-2016, 07:37 PM
I do not think it is for the reason of fleecing the fans but more to stop turning up at Man U away and finding yourselves surrounded by Man U fans.

Billy maybe just get someone with a membership who are not going to the games you want to attend to get the tickets for you. Hopefully anyone on here with a membership and not going to the games you mention will PM you.

All the best with it.

If he has 3,000 loyalty points he must have a history of season tickets!!

#againstmodernfootball

Worksop Palace
19-09-2016, 08:32 PM
Do you think its right?

I hope to get to maybe 6 or 7 games this season and so I pay my 25. I see the membership therefore as a 4 supplement for each game. A pint, if you will. You pays your money you takes your choice I suppose.

People will be quick to bitch and moan if they can't get a ticket for a cup semi or fans of other teams pick up tickets in our end because it's a free for all.

EddieEdwards
19-09-2016, 08:54 PM
I have however decided to spend the money instead this season on going to a few more 'obscure' away games at grounds ive not done before. Everton, Hull and Stoke being my initial thoughts.

So 3 of us (all in similar positions) decide to book to go to Everton. Phone up to get tickets, and turns out apparently we need to spend 25 or 55 on a memberships. When I asked why, lady said it was to prove to I was a Palace fan. I said I have over 3000 loyalty points. She couldnt really answer and her response was it was now policy 'members only for away tickets too'. So decided to leave it.You've picked a strange time to complain about this as, for the first time in a while, tickets are currently available for non-members to buy for certain matches. The away games at Southampton, Sunderland and Everton are now on general sale, 4 tickets per person. No season ticket, membership or even booking history required - all you need is a client reference, which you can get by creating an account in the online system if you don't already have one.

It's annoying (but not entirely surprising) that the box office lady you spoke to gave you incorrect info, but if you just use the online system you'll be able to buy tickets to any of the above games.

http://www.cpfc.co.uk/news/article/2016-17/the-allocation-for-three-of-our-away-matches-has-increased-and-the-games-are-on-general-sale.-3298694.aspx

muswell eagle
19-09-2016, 09:09 PM
The benefit of being a member was shown when we got to the Cup Final last season. I have always bought tickets for my daughters on my membership (season ticket), but it meant they had no chance of getting a ticket.

The more successful we become, the more important a membership will become.

Billyd
19-09-2016, 10:06 PM
People will be quick to bitch and moan if they can't get a ticket for a cup semi or fans of other teams pick up tickets in our end because it's a free for all.

Wasnt complaining about that and have no problem with big games needing memberships.

Was complaining about games that wont sell out in a million years.

Anyway seems they have made Everton and Sunderland now general sale. Too late but hopefully a sign of things to come. When they release ticket info it would be useful to know for booking trains etc.

Chillo
19-09-2016, 10:13 PM
Wasnt complaining about that and have no problem with big games needing memberships.

Was complaining about games that wont sell out in a million years.

Anyway seems they have made Everton and Sunderland now general sale. Too late but hopefully a sign of things to come. When they release ticket info it would be useful to know for booking trains etc.

Billy, if you need confirmation for train tickets (usually very early), then I doubt you'll be able to know about whether match tickets are available to those without a ST or membership in time for cheap train tickets.

RON GADD
19-09-2016, 11:01 PM
I thought Memberships were also like a security requirement.
If a Fan is ejected or identified by video as being 'naughty' the Club can track the Fan to the Seat and take the appropriate sactions.

Also don't forget there is a Max price for the first time on Away Tickets which might mean attendance will be higher.

The Club introduced an Away Season Ticket I believe on the back of that.

So they may be expecting different levels of attendancefor Away matches this season,

Raggy
20-09-2016, 07:52 AM
It's to stop touts I think, the overall implementation is a little off but I see the logic

Touts would be stopped by not having loyalty points. No need for the extra 25 tax on genuine fans.

Besides I can't see Middlesbrough away being that lucrative to touts, its not the Champions League Final.

Worksop Palace
20-09-2016, 08:04 AM
Touts would be stopped by not having loyalty points. No need for the extra 25 tax on genuine fans.

Besides I can't see Middlesbrough away being that lucrative to touts, its not the Champions League Final.

Me seeing palace win is pretty much the same odds as us getting to the champions league final

suits_you
20-09-2016, 08:09 AM
Meanwhile, I am racking up loyalty points for eating a pie.

Worksop Palace
20-09-2016, 08:13 AM
Meanwhile, I am racking up loyalty points for eating a pie.

They should hand out medals not points for that

Nth Kent Eagle
20-09-2016, 08:13 AM
If you made memberships free then every tout in the kingdom would buy multiple memberships in the names of family members and if like last year we reached Wembley they could get a ticket. Then they could sell them on for a big mark up. Lubbly jubbly. So I see why there is a need at home matches to avoid us turning the Arthur into the modern equivalent of the Shed, Kop, Chicken Run or Stretford End. For away matches at Sunderland or Middlesborough there is no point in making it members only.

Rock
20-09-2016, 08:19 AM
Yes fair point re booking history. Had not thought of that. Maybe PM CPFC2010 and raise it with them and see if they can do something?

I already brought this up with CPFC2010 in the FA Cup Semi-final tickets thread. Got called a glory hunter, despite the fact that I used to go to Palace when we were utter garbage. Had some great times though, Stockport away was a highlight (when the final whistle blew obviously).

Not attended a single game since promotion as I refuse to buy a membership. Loved the last time we were in the premiership as my booking history allowed me to attend quite a few games including away at Villa and Southampton (Never thought that the Jordan era would have so many fond memories). Seems that isn't the way things are now .
:(

Sir.S.C Remembered
20-09-2016, 08:21 AM
You can of course support Palace without membership.

I actually think our season tickets and membership prices are very reasonable. I get that it is not ideal for everyone, but the club also have to strike a balance between revenue but more so stopping rivals fans using our ground as a safe place and it is a tough one to get right.

Ash
20-09-2016, 08:28 AM
It's a club. Sporting clubs have paid subscriptions, I don't see a problem with it.

Nth Kent Eagle
20-09-2016, 08:30 AM
No need for memberships at home matches. I wonder when we play West Ham or Chelsea whether some of their fans will go in the home end? Never happened in the 70s or 80s did it? Not sure though if membership is necessary for games like last Sunday?

New LP
20-09-2016, 12:05 PM
It's a club. Sporting clubs have paid subscriptions, I don't see a problem with it.

A rather weak attempt to justify this. It depends what you mean by 'sports club'. Crystal Palace isn't a tennis club, golf club or gym though is it? To compare supporters of a football club wishing to watch matches with members of the public using facilities to play sport somewhere is tenuous.

Most football clubs do not charge fans a membership fee for a game away from home which won't sell out.

ebyeeckeagle
20-09-2016, 12:26 PM
No need for memberships at home matches. I wonder when we play West Ham or Chelsea whether some of their fans will go in the home end? Never happened in the 70s or 80s did it? Not sure though if membership is necessary for games like last Sunday?

Chelsea never in our end? I think you may recollect differently to me about the 80's, Plus the away allocation (as such) was much more I imagine back then.

CedarEagle
20-09-2016, 12:31 PM
Just for balance ; I bought a Gold Membership. Included are Season DVD, portable phone charger and 10 % off club shop purchases which I already used when buying new home shirt as previous one was several years old. I also get emailed the match programme each time. That pretty much adds up to the value of what I've spent anyway.


The Silver Membership is obviously cheaper for those on a budget.

Some may view it as money making.

I can see the club's point in trying to make sure tickets aren't in the wrong hands but agree it's probably not necessary for most away games. If there's a limit on away tickets, members and s/t holders get preference anyway. There should always be a general sale of tickets if the former don't take them up.

Membership shouldn't be compulsory for away games but if it stops just a single plastic Moan U fan getting in to Selhurst then I'm all for it at home.

Chris K
20-09-2016, 12:39 PM
For more balance I recently had a Liverpool 'supporter' ask how to get tickets for him and his mate for our upcoming game against them. I said he had no chance of getting in the away end and that if he wanted to go in the home end he'd need to spend 55 on membership, Cat A+ ticket for 45 and then a Cat B game against someone gash for 40.

His response was "What so i've got to spend nearly 150 just to watch a game, **** that". I said "Yes, your response is exactly why we do it"

Nth Kent Eagle
20-09-2016, 12:42 PM
Chelsea never in our end? I think you may recollect differently to me about the 80's, Plus the away allocation (as such) was much more I imagine back then.

I was being tongue in cheek. I recall West Ham taking over the home areas in 1978?, Tottenham in the Holmesdale in 1977-8 and Millwall in there in 1976.

Man of Kent
20-09-2016, 01:03 PM
Also until Jordan really put his foot down about away fans in home areas the place was swamped with Liverpool, Man Utd, West Ham especially Chelsea whenever we played them. It was only really that League Cup Semi in 2004 that showed what our ground could be like if we restricted away supporters, and I believe this is partly why we won.

The OP says that the Club have lost out - unfortunately they haven't because there will be someone willing to pay the price. I thank goodness I got my season tickets when I did as I probably could not afford to go if I was paying on a week on week basis.

Palacemad2002
20-09-2016, 01:36 PM
There go my plans of taking the missus to Burnley away then. Looks like she'll have to sit in the home end with her claret supporting mate and her boyfriend which will just be bloody annoying when i'll have loads of spare seats around me.

I get having this policy in place for the popular away fixtures and home games so as to stop touts and glory hunters, but why have it in place for away fixtures that will no way sell out and only appeal to the original hardcore fans? Part of the fun supporting Palace was always being able to take neutral friends or family to the odd away game that didnt sell very well and get to show them what an awayday was truly all about. Such a backwards move from the club using a policy which should have some more balance and forsight.

Ash
20-09-2016, 01:39 PM
Also until Jordan really put his foot down about away fans in home areas the place was swamped with Liverpool, Man Utd, West Ham especially Chelsea whenever we played them.

That's a great point. The current membership scheme has all but cut that out.

Fatboy
20-09-2016, 01:45 PM
Remember that FIRST game you went to ? My school friends and I decided to go along on the day.

Cannot do that nowadays.
:(

How do you get that first time fan in, if they are not friends with a ST holder ?

Fatboy
20-09-2016, 01:51 PM
Meanwhile, I am racking up loyalty points for eating a pie.

Minge ?

jmemour
20-09-2016, 01:52 PM
There go my plans of taking the missus to Burnley away then. Looks like she'll have to sit in the home end with her claret supporting mate and her boyfriend which will just be bloody annoying when i'll have loads of spare seats around me.

I get having this policy in place for the popular away fixtures and home games so as to stop touts and glory hunters, but why have it in place for away fixtures that will no way sell out and only appeal to the original hardcore fans? Part of the fun supporting Palace was always being able to take neutral friends or family to the odd away game that didnt sell very well and get to show them what an awayday was truly all about. Such a backwards move from the club using a policy which should have some more balance and forsight.

Would be shocked if you couldn't purchase more than 1 per member/ST holder for Burnley!

Pint of Speroni
20-09-2016, 01:58 PM
Remember that FIRST game you went to ? My school friends and I decided to go along on the day.

Cannot do that nowadays.
:(

How do you get that first time fan in, if they are not friends with a ST holder ?

Go to a cup game? Find somebody who is a member and can purchase up to 4 tickets per membership for a Category B game? Buy a membership?

Pint of Speroni
20-09-2016, 02:03 PM
Also while it's probably not an ideal system we have in place, it is entirely justified by the fact we sell out most games to people who have bought the memberships.

If we had a bigger ground more matches would reach general sale but as our ground is too small there's not much more they can do is there?

NorthernEagle80
20-09-2016, 02:03 PM
Would be shocked if you couldn't purchase more than 1 per member/ST holder for Burnley!

It was only one per ST for Everton.

Pint of Speroni
20-09-2016, 02:06 PM
It was only one per ST for Everton.

Everton is 4 per client reference at the moment.

Ash
20-09-2016, 02:09 PM
I heard somewhere we've got a waiting list for season tickets now. The team's success has changed the club for the better and the membership scheme/ticket availability a by-product of that progress. Long may it continue.

NorthernEagle80
20-09-2016, 02:11 PM
Everton is 4 per client reference at the moment.

Must have been because it was STs only then as I got them as soon as they were on sale.

Twilko
20-09-2016, 02:18 PM
Remember that FIRST game you went to ? My school friends and I decided to go along on the day.

Cannot do that nowadays.
:(

How do you get that first time fan in, if they are not friends with a ST holder ?

When was the last time we were in the top flight and you could just turn up on the day and get tickets easily? That freedom is a nice thing about being in the championship, but I'm quite happy that Palace aren't there now.

I've already said this, but how many people who are likely to want to go to a game don't know a single season ticket holder or member? You don't have to be best friends with them. The last away game I went to I got a ticket off my mum's coworker who I'd never even met.

cpfc4evandeva
20-09-2016, 02:35 PM
I think that the membership fee was originally put in place to discourage Man Utd, Liverpool, etc, fans from buying tickets in the home end.

However, it's fairly obvious now that whilst this may work on a small scale, on the industrial tout level it makes f*ck all difference. The touts are more than happy to pay 25 for the year in the knowledge that they will more than make this back from a single game.

There were Danish Liverpool fans in front of us in the away end at Anfield last year ffs. I absolutely loved it when Dann took the points at the end :lux:

So in conclusion; when we have fans that you can trace their ticket purchases back for more than a year or two, I don't see why they should have to buy membership for away games against Everton on a Friday night. It strikes me as money-making from the club now as opposed to making sure our tickets go to real fans.

EddieEdwards
20-09-2016, 07:51 PM
Just to re-iterate, as this thread has become something of a confusion of various membership-related issues and some people still seem to be missing the main point...

Tickets for the away games at Sunderland and Everton are now on general sale, 4 per person. No membership is required. (Southampton also went on general sale and tickets will be available at the ground tomorrow night.)

Middlesbrough was members only, 2 per person, which was a pointless restriction as there were loads of tickets available on the day. The same restriction was in place at first for Southampton, Sunderland and Everton but the club seem to have recognised that this policy is not appropriate for games such as these. I hoped they would allow members to buy unlimited guest tickets but they've actually gone beyond that and put the tickets on general sale. It seems likely that they'll do the same for Burnley once season ticket holders and members have had their phases.

So, although the club have been a bit slow on the uptake, this is a welcome step in the right direction. They do need to sort out that business about not being able to sell away tickets over the counter, though!

Yoda
20-09-2016, 10:17 PM
Remember that FIRST game you went to ? My school friends and I decided to go along on the day.

Cannot do that nowadays.
:(

How do you get that first time fan in, if they are not friends with a ST holder ?

Go to a cup game?

Dorking .Eagle
21-09-2016, 05:21 AM
My first game, my granddad took me, he was already a longstanding season ticket holder.

I would imagine the majority of people whose first game is as a kid are taken by their dad or the dad of a friend who goes already

The bigger issue I think isn't that you have to be a member to buy tickets for most games, (as existing members or S/T holders are often the 'introducers'), but that for most season ticket holders there just isn't an empty seat near them (in front/behind or next to them etc) so to bring someone along either requires relocating to crap seats in the Arthur for a game, or waiting for a game where a S/T holding friend or family lends a ticket

Salad_Burnet
20-01-2017, 11:54 PM
If I go to the box office tomorrow waiving 40 or whatever it is and asking someone in the queue - that's a member - to buy me a ticket... basically, is this common practice these days outside the box office, or will people just think I'm a c***/tout?

Dorking .Eagle
21-01-2017, 10:33 AM
If I go to the box office tomorrow waiving 40 or whatever it is and asking someone in the queue - that's a member - to buy me a ticket... basically, is this common practice these days outside the box office, or will people just think I'm a c***/tout?

Depends if you 'look like' a tout or not I guess. If you're wearing a Palace scarf or something similar then I would imagine someone nearby will help.

At the evening home game against Swansea recently, there was a Palace fan standing outside the box office door trying to give away a ticket for free (presume he wanted a couple of tickets for the Man United game and had to buy the two games together) and I saw him there for at least 10 minutes and he literally couldn't give it away as nobody was going into the box office to buy tickets for that nights game!