54,000 Customers Hit SEPTA Pope Pass Site in First Minute of Sales

Pass sales will not resume this week as the agency seeks best technology solution.

Pope Francis, miqu77 / Shutterstock.com. Pope Pass sample, via SEPTA.

Pope Francis, miqu77 / Shutterstock.com. Pope Pass sample, via SEPTA.

SEPTA tweeted minutes ago that Pope Pass sales would not resume online anytime this week.

“We have been working with IT consultants over the last two days, and are still considering the best option to address the high interest among customers interested in purchasing the pass, and the heavy volume on the e-commerce site,” said SEPTA spokesperson Andrew Busch in a statement.

An analysis of the activity yesterday shows that 54,000 customers visited the e-commerce site within the first minute after the site was launched,” it continues. “We will continue to evaluate the best option for us to move forward with the sale of the Papal Passes. We may continue to work with the IT consultants to improve the e-commerce site; we are also considering working with an outside vendor to sell the passes for us.”

Busch confirmed that the approximately 175,000 available passes will go quickly once they’re back on sale, and that SEPTA’s priority is to make sure they’re purchased by people who want to see the pope and commuters.

SEPTA suspended sales yesterday, just hours after sales commenced, due to technical difficulties. To our knowledge, PATCO has had no similar problems with their own special pass sales for the papal visit.

A SEPTA statement on the issue is forthcoming.