People are eager to visit their favorite places once things begin reopening. London Zoo's website crashed due to the number of people trying to get hold of tickets ahead of reopening.
The online shop was “struggling to keep up," and customers reported receiving error messages when they tried to reserve some of the limited slots available from next Monday.
🌟 IT’S OFFICIAL 🌟 We will re-open on Monday 15 June – tickets go on sale at 12.30pm tomorrow! We can’t wait to welc… https://t.co/X5w7GfwZQV— ZSL London Zoo (@ZSL London Zoo) 1591810212.0
All zoos were forced to close in March after the UK government implemented restrictions to slow the spread of the virus.
Responding on Twitter, the zoo said that the site was “bending under the pressure of the volume of people booking."
Thank you for your patience today! 😩 Our website has been overwhelmed with visitors & we can only apologise for the… https://t.co/Ef4gPjvfG8— ZSL London Zoo (@ZSL London Zoo) 1591898435.0
In another message, it told customers the “poor website hasn't seen this volume of visitors in a long time."
Please bear with us if you're trying to book tickets today, our poor website hasn't seen this volume of visitors in a long time!— ZSL London Zoo (@ZSL London Zoo) 1591876746.0
This is after people spent hours trying to book a ticket.
@zsllondonzoo Bored of seeing this now, been trying for nearly five hours! https://t.co/v1OYonGmVV— Barny Skinner (@Barny Skinner) 1591892476.0
Zoos in England have been given the green light to welcome back visitors from June 15 for the first time since lockdown. Provided social-distancing measures are in place and indoor attractions remain closed.
And people were willing to spend hours waiting for those tickets.
@petesimonN4 @zsllondonzoo Lucky. I’m almost 6 hours in!— James Jackaman (@James Jackaman) 1591896130.0
Numbers of visitors will also have to be restricted, and the Regent's Park attraction is ensuring customers maintain space by painting colored paw prints on the ground to mark one-way systems.
A spokesman for the city attraction said they were “truly moved" by the “huge demand" for tickets.
“The sheer volume of people heading to our website has been so encouraging and we're working to get all tickets processed as quickly as possible – it's testament to how excited people are about finally being able to safely enjoy a great day out at one of our two zoos next week," they added.
Penguins within their enclosure at ZSL London Zoo (Aaron Chown/PA)
On Wednesday, the park's boss Kathryn England said the team was “ready to go and really looking forward to welcoming people back."
England described the zoo as “breathing a sigh of relief" at the announcement that it could reopen.
“It's been tough, it's been really tough through a financial lens," she said. “We've really drained down our savings."