Let’s talk tour

For months, we haven’t heard any news or rumors about the postponed Vertigo tour dates being rescheduled, but all of that is quickly changing. We finally have some tour information to share from a number of reliable sources.

Our friends at U2japan.com have learned that the Tokyo Dome has been reserved on December 14 and 15 for U2’s use. They report that the promoter and U2 management are locked on the issue of ticket price. U2 want to keep prices fair; the promoter wants to sell “premium” tickets. If U2 perform at the Tokyo Dome, it will likely be to fans all sitting in reserved seats because of Japan’s strict fire codes.

U2japan.com also has learned when and where U2’s stage set is to be delivered to their part of the world. An employee of the sea transportation company that will be handling U2’s set revealed the company expects U2’s set to arrive in Yokohama Port in September or October. If this information is true, it may mean U2 intend to rehearse in Japan before beginning the tour again in Australia and New Zealand in November (the current rumored tour commencement date) — or it may mean the first rescheduled dates will be in Japan — or it might mean nothing other than Yokohama Port is a common delivery point for sets and equipment.

We’ve heard from several sources that the tour route will be slightly different than originally planned, with Australia getting their rescheduled dates first, followed by New Zealand, Japan, and Hawaii. The show at Honolulu’s Aloha Stadium may be a New Year’s Eve show, which fits with the publication of a curious item at Ticketmaster.com on March 1. For a short time on that date, Ticketmaster.com listed an event at Aloha Stadium on December 31st for $1. When questioned about the event, Ticketmaster said it was a placeholder in the system for an event to be announced later. Even then, fans suspected it was for U2’s rescheduled show.

Perhaps the most interesting news we’ve heard is there may be additional concerts in countries that were not previously listed on the tour schedule and countries that have already been Vertigo-ed. Yes, that means the United States. Again.

Of course, we need to point out that all of this information could be rubbish, or it could be true for the moment and false tomorrow. Whatever the case, we like tour talk and are ready for more.

OZ and NZ shows sell out

U2 fans in Australia and New Zealand are expressing their disappointment of not getting tickets to the shows in their countries, which sold out faster than you can say, “Damn you, Ticketek and Ticketmaster!” The Sydney show sold out in an hour, the Auckland show in 90 minutes, and the Melbourne show in two hours. A second Auckland show was announced for March 18. Second shows in Sydney and Melbourne are expected to be announced tomorrow (Tuesday, Dec. 6).

Tickets to the OZ and NZ shows are already being sold on eBay for more than $2000 each.

Fans who were locked out of the on-sales have an alternative way to score tickets. Over the weekend, ETS, the official tour and travel operator for the Vertigo Tour, announced that it is offering packages for the shows in Auckland, Brisbane, Melbourne, Adelaide, and Sydney. The packages include hotel accommodations, a pre-show party, and concert tickets.

ETS is also offering a contest to win a package for two to see U2 in Sydney. You must register as an ETS Insider to enter the contest.

Update: U2 announced today additional shows in Auckland, Melbourne, and Sydney. Tickets for these shows will go on sale on Monday, Dec. 12 at 9 a.m.

Will You Follow in 2006?

ETS, the official tour and travel operator for the Vertigo Tour, is asking for fan input on the 2006 tour. ETS recognizes that U2 fans travel great distances to see the band, but ETS is wondering how far we will follow.

If you are planning or want to attend any of the shows on the 2006 tour (there will definitely be more dates announced!), please take a minute to read a letter from Don McVie, the president of ETS, about the 2006 tour and answer his questions.

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