While the group-stages will be played online this year, the playoffs will take place in London on UCL's Bloomsbury Campus. Details to follow.
Can we afford this?
We understand a lot of you will be reading this from universities outside of London, and budgeting for the event as a student society may seem daunting. That is why we've put together a few tips to help make the PUCL an affordable event to partake in!
**Note that many of these tips assume travel costs, which will not be applicable this year until playoff rounds, if then.**
1) Groupsave tickets
Each fixture of the PUCL requires 4 players from your team, which means buying 4 day return tickets to central London. This sounds expensive, but can be made much cheaper by choosing a "Groupsave" ticket which discounts the price by 34%.
2) Book in advance
All fixtures for the PUCL are decided in advance (see dates in "fixtures" tab) to allow for teams to book train tickets in advance. Prices can be significantly cheaper even booking a week in advance as opposed to day before, so get organised, mark the dates in your calendar and get booking!
3) Consider buying a coach ticket
If trains are still too expensive, do consider buying a coach ticket to London via the National Express. The journey takes longer but can often be a cheap alternative.
4) Ask your union for travel funds
If you're not on the committee of your chess society, ask your president/treasurer asap to ask your student union for travel funds. Explain to them that this is a national tournament with some of the strongest chess playing universities participating. Hopefully they will want to support this!
5) No accommodation needed, entry fee is cheap
This is one easily overlooked aspect of the PUCL. There is no accommodation needed as the PUCL is a daytime event, hence saving costs on overnight stays. Also the entry fee amounts to £5 per person for rated chess which is a bargain in our eyes!
6) UCL is in walking distance from Kings Cross St Pancras
People arriving at the London station Kings Cross St Pancras can avoid spending underground fees as UCL is a brisk 15 minute walk away.
We hope these tips are helpful and if you have any more suggestions on making travel cheaper for universities travelling from afar, do contact us!