2010 Winter Games Media FAQs

By the numbers—cost and attendance:

  • What are the competition dates for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games?
Olympics: Feb. 12 to 28, 2010
Paralympics: March 12 to 21, 2010
  • How many athletes are expected to participate in the 2010 Winter Games?
British Columbia will host about 5,500 athletes and officials at the 2010 Winter Games and another 1,350 will at the 2010 Paralympic Winter Games.
  • How much will the 2010 Winter Games cost?
The projected cost of the 2010 Winter Games is approximately $1.7 billion. This figure could increase as the Games draw closer, and doesn’t include the $580 million budget for venue construction and renovation. To see the budget, click here.
  • How much money will the government contribute and how much will come from private industry?
By late 2008, the Government of Canada had invested $654.65 million. Domestic sponsors have committed more than $615 million.
  • How many tourists are expected to attend?
While it’s impossible to predict precisely how many tourists will choose to attend the 2010 Winter Games, there are 1.8 million tickets available for events. The Vancouver International Airport has the capacity to accommodate some 1.9 million visitors. The City of Vancouver anticipates more than 250,000 visitors will come to the city during the 2010 Winter Games; Tourism Vancouver predicts closer to 350,000.
  • What is the hotel accommodation capacity in Vancouver and the other venues?
Vancouver, BC has 24,200 hotel rooms. Most hotels will begin taking individual reservations for the 2010 Winter Games about one year prior to the start dates. Tourism Vancouver has featured hotel packages. You can also check out www.2010destinationplanner.com—the destination planning site for the 2010 Winter Games. Whistler, BC has 2,400 hotel rooms available; Tourism Whistler gives valuable information about hotels and their amenities. Many websites such as Homelink, Rent At The Games or Rent 2010 also list homes available to rent during the 2010 Winter Games.
  • How much will transportation cost me?
The costs will vary slightly as Vancouver, BC works hard to improve its fast and eco-friendly transit system. At this time, the Olympic Bus Network, which commutes between Vancouver and Whistler, will cost $25 round-trip. Limo or town car service runs about $45 one-way from the airport to downtown, while taxis to downtown Vancouver cost approximately $23-26. There is also a water taxi service that will operate between Granville Island and Squamish, BC. If you must take a cab, the rate is between $1.20-1.34 per km. Visit Vancouver2010.com for timetables, news updates and reports on road and traffic conditions during the 2010 Winter Games.
  • How many people are expected to watch the Games on TV?
Worldwide, about three billion people are expected to tune in. CTV is the official Canadian broadcaster.
  • How can my audience buy last-minute tickets?
Visiting spectators from outside Canada must go through their National Olympic Committee (NOC) or its official affiliate to find tickets. To find the contact info for your country’s NOC ticket agent, visit www.vancouver2010.com.

Location, location, location—venues and transportation:

  • Where will the opening and closing ceremonies be held?
Both opening and closing ceremonies for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games will be held at BC Place in downtown Vancouver, BC. BC Place can seat about 55,000 spectators, and has the technology and space to provide the latest in sound, lighting and special-effects technology.
  • Where is the Olympic Village located?
In Vancouver, BC, the Olympic and Paralympic Village is located near the city centre on the edge of False Creek, just minutes from the nightly victory ceremonies at BC Place. In Whistler, BC, the Olympic and Paralympic Village is in the Cheakamus Valley located at the southern entrance to Whistler.
  • Where will the International Broadcasting Centre be located?
The Main Media Centre and the International Broadcasting Centre will be in the Vancouver Convention and Exhibition Centre on Vancouver, BC’s waterfront; the Whistler Media Centre will be in the TELUS Whistler Conference Centre.
  • Which facilities will be used and where are they located?
You will find a complete list of competitive and non-competitive venues at: www.vancouver2010.com.
  • Where will I be able to access the latest information throughout the event?
Before 2010, you can subscribe to Olympic RSS feeds. During the 2010 Winter Games, venue media centres will be equipped with Info2010 intranet terminals, which will have info as well as athlete comments posted by the Olympic News Service reporters. For a list of what is available at each media centre please see: www.vancouver2010.com.
  • How do I find accommodation while I am assigned to cover the 2010 Winter Games?
The official accomodation planning site will tell you everything you need to know: www.2010destinationplanner.com.
  • How will I move between venues?
Vancouver, BC is aiming to be car-free during the 2010 Winter Games and is encouraging spectators and media alike to walk, cycle, carpool or use public transportation. The Canada Line will transport visitors from Vancouver’s airport to the downtown area in just 25 minutes. Downtown, everyone can use the extensive transit service, which includes TransLink’s buses and rapid-transit lines, SeaBus boats and the West Coast Express commuter rail. The Olympic Bus Network travels from park-and-ride stations to venues, as well as to and from Whistler, BC on the scenic Sea to Sky Highway.   
  • Where and how can I rent last-minute vans and drivers/guides?
Since Vancouver, BC is trying to take an eco-friendly approach to the 2010 Winter Games, there will be a transportation system leaving from the main media venues in Vancouver and Whistler which provides easy access to each location; (methods of transportations are mentioned in the question “How do I move between venues?” above). If you still require a separate mode of transportation to an out-of-the-way location, there are rental businesses in Vancouver, including:
Hertz Rent A Car: www.hertz.com
For information on the area, the Vancouver Visitor Centres downtown can assist. Also check out www.vancouver-bc.com/Tours/, a great site to find listings of tour guides and operators in the region. There are also numerous activities guided or self-guided at www.tourismvancouver.com as well.
  • Where can I find a schedule of events?
The official schedule for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games is charted at: www.vancouver2010.com.

Who’s who—contact people and groups:

  • Where can I find short bios of interesting characters as potential interview partners for Games-related stories?
You have different options, depending on whom you are looking to interview. E-mail your request to: mediarelations [at] vancouver2010 [dot] com.
For an athlete, the Canadian Olympic Committee has a great search tool with bios, photos and contact info. Visit www.olympic.ca and click on “Profile Search” in the right-hand column to find a specific athlete.
  • Whom do I contact if I want to get into tourism venues and talk to media contacts?
Requests should be sent to mediarelations [at] vancouver2010 [dot] com if you would like to speak with a member of VANOC. You can also contact Tourism BC, Tourism Vancouver or the CTC for specific venue, site or destination information before or after the 2010 Winter Games.
  • Can I get direct quotes for my stories throughout the 2010 Winter Games?
If you wish to speak with someone from VANOC, e-mail your enquiry to mediarelations [at] vancouver2010 [dot] com; at the events, Olympic News Service reporters will be gathering athlete comments to be put on Info2010 terminals which can be found and accessed in the venue media centres’ workrooms.
  • How do I contact my local CTC office?
To find the names and numbers of CTC contacts in Canada or our nine international markets, please see: mediacentre.canada.travel/ctc-international-contacts.
  • Can I get airline support for my flight/transfers/accommodation?
This is possible—CTC works directly with the provinces and territories and does help sponsor airfare under the CTC’s “travel media assistance” program. Members of the Canadian media must contact their province’s tourism organization (i.e. Travel Alberta, Tourism Saskatchewan, etc.) to start the process and apply for assistance. International media should contact the CTC media rep in their country (i.e., CTC-UK, CTC-Mexico, etc.)
  • Can I travel to other parts of Canada with assistance from the Canadian Tourism Commission or other tourism offices? And where can I find a list of available press trips to BC and other provinces?
Yes, there is a “travel media assistance” program. (Please see “Can I get airline support for my flight/transfers/accommodation?” above for more information.) For a list of press trips, all media should contact each province or territory’s tourism marketing organization to request a list of upcoming “familiarization” trips.
  • What other stories can I research in the immediate vicinity of the 2010 Winter Games region?
There is a wealth of excellent story ideas on the CTC News Centre website; you can search by area of interest or by a topic that piques your interest. 
  • Where can I see a list of all Canada video footage pooled from all provinces/territories?
For an extensive collection of footage from across Canada, consult the CTC’s photos & footage page.
  • How can I get access to images and video?
For an extensive library of Canadian images and footage, sign in at: www.destination2010.ca/images-footage or access the vast amount of photos and footage available at the CTC News Centre’s photos & footage page.
  • Whom can speak about the safety plan for the 2010 Winter Games?
The Royal Canadian Mountain Police—aka RCMP or the Mounties—will lead the Vancouver 2010 Integrated Security Unit (V2010-ISU), a team comprised of RCMP members, the Vancouver and West Vancouver Police departments and the Canadian Forces that will be in charge of securing the 2010 Winter Games. Chief Superintendent Bob Harriman is the RCMP Officer in Charge of the V2010-ISU.
  • How will First Nations participate in the 2010 Winter Games?
First Nations people will play an integral role in the 2010 Winter Games. For detailed information about the Four Host First Nations, visit www.fourhostfirstnations.com.

Full credit—accreditation and media office locations:

  • How do I get accreditation for the 2010 Winter Games?
Approximately 10,000 media representatives are expected to attend, with 2,800 accredited press and support staff, and 7,000 accredited broadcasters and technicians. For details, visit: www.vancouver2010.com or contact your country’s National Olympic Committee
  • If I’m an accredited journalist, do I have immediate access to all events? What if I am not accredited?
If you are accredited in the “ENR” category, you will have access to the Main Media Centre and media centres at the venues—although stipulations do apply. The rules for news access are outlined at: www.olympic.org.
There is also a general “E” category, which each country’s National Olympic Committee (NOC) is in charge of delegating to its journalists. Contact your NOC for accreditation details.  
  • What if I don’t receive accreditation? Can I still attend and cover the 2010 Winter Games?
All questions regarding accreditation and news access should be addressed to: media [dot] operations [at] olympic [dot] org. For questions on which locations will be accesible to non-accredited journalists, please email: pressoperations [at] vancouver2010 [dot] com.  
  • Will the 2010 Winter Games info be available in both English and French?
VANOC is working hard to make the Games fully bilingual in Canada’s two official languages: English and French. Venue signs, medal ceremonies and staff will all be proficient in both languages.  
  • Will there be dedicated staff looking after the international media?
The media centres will be well-staffed with friendly faces willing to help you out. The Main Media Centre at the Vancouver Convention and Exhibition Centre has all the necessary facilities to produce live broadcasts and radio coverage, plus hold press conferences. There is also and a Photo Services Centre for accredited photographers, as well as dining areas, a food court, help desk, post office, Olympic store and banking services. Media centres at each venue will have help desks, language support and Info2010 terminals to deliver the latest news during the events.
  • Where can I meet other media colleagues after work?
The Main Media Centre (MMC) in Vancouver, BC will house all broadcasters and accredited journalists and photographers, so you’ll all be in one place. In addition to the press conference rooms, service rooms and workrooms, there are also on-site dining spots. The Main Media Centre’s downtown location means it’s just steps away from Vancouver’s finest pubs, clubs and dining establishments; the Vancouver Press Club is just south of the Granville Street Bridge.
  • Will the media centre continue to be in operation after the 2010 Winter Games end?

No. The site of the Main Media Centre—the Vancouver Convention and Exhibition Centre—will return to normal operations when the 2010 Winter Games end.