Groundhopping is getting more and more popular in a lot of countries. The fascination of visiting new places, meeting new people and concur new grounds, can simply not be stopped! When you first try it, there is no way back, because this is addictive. Here is my guide with some hints and tips to be a successful groundhopper, solely based on my own experience!
First of all, let’s start with what Groundhopping really is? According to the Cambridge dictionary, the definition of Groundhopping is “the activity of going to watch football games at many different places” Some might add that it is about visiting matches at as many different stadiums as possible. Some may say that it is about experiencing the true soul and spirit of the beautiful game. It is all a big adventure!
In this article, I will share some of my own experience. I have been groundhopping quite a bit in Europe, and a lot in the Nordics. In this article I will focus on the Nordics!
How to plan your Grondhopping
First of all, you have got to find out where you want to go. Start with region and country, and then you can narrow it down. Then find out when you want to go there. Do you have any special matches on your mind or do you just generally want to visit an area? Myself I prefer to have most things organized before I travel. Including a complete list of matches I will attend and travel details on how to get there. If you put some extra time into the planning process, the trip itself will be much more smoother and comfortable. If the clubs have online ticket booking-systems, it can be smart to buy tickets in advance. Especially if a large crowd is expected.
Then, it is time to find out which matches to attend. In that case I can really recommend the Grounhopperapp Futbology (I will never understand why they changed the name), the most important tool for every Groundhopper! Download it to your mobile phone and get fixture lists and maps to all matches in the top divisions in plenty of nations! Furthermore, league fixtures can be found by visiting the official Football Association pages:
Getting tickets to your groundhopping matches
One of the most important aspects with groundhopping is obviously to get access to matches. For the highest divisions, you will need a ticket! The larger clubs sell tickets online and that is normally an easy way to get your ticket. Visit the webpage of the team to buy them there. In the Nordics, matches are seldom sold-out and most clubs also sell the tickets at the stadium on match-days.
Denmark: Almost all clubs sell tickets at the stadium. The largest clubs have online ticket sale. Few matches are sell-outs
Faroe Islands: All clubs sell their tickets at the stadium and no clubs have online sale. Cash is normal as payment. Matches are never sold out
Finland: Almost all clubs sell tickets at the stadium. The largest clubs have online ticket sale. Few matches are sell-outs
Iceland: All clubs sell their tickets at the stadium. Matches are never sell-outs
Norway: Almost all clubs sell tickets at the stadium. The largest clubs have online ticket sale. Few matches are sell-outs
Sweden: Almost all clubs sell tickets at the stadium. The largest clubs have online ticket sale. Few matches are sell-outs
How to travel as a groundhopper
So, let’s talk about how to get around to the different stadiums. You want your groundhopping travelling to be smooth and efficient, but not spending too much money. Early booking is always smart, then you will get the lowest prices especially on plane, train, car renting and accommodation.
Some country specific tips:
Denmark: Small distances so you can easily get around with both car, bus and train. Tube is also a good alternative in Copenhagen
Faroe Islands: Small distances. Car is recommended, but there are some buses as well. To get to some of the islands you will need to take a ferry
Finland: Plane, car bus and train. Tube is also a good alternative in some of the big cities
Iceland: I will definitely recommend car, but in the Reykjavik area you might stick to the bus
Norway: Plane, car, bus and train. Tube is also a good alternative in some of the big cities
Sweden: Plane, car, bus and train. Tube is also a good alternative in some of the big cities
Good luck on your Nordic Groundhopping and remember to say hello if our ways crosses!