We absolutely love getting feedback. It not only brings us joy to know that our guests care so much to drop us a line about our program, but it also helps us make the experience even better in the future. And let’s be real – we wouldn’t be who we are without you guys and gals. You are what makes our VIP program so special, and because of that, we welcome any and all stories about your experience.
Recently, one of our UFC VIP Experiences clients, Steve, reached out to his sales rep to let him know about his experience at UFC 209. And we are so glad he did! We loved Steve’s enthusiasm so much that we just had to sit down and talk with him.
Last week, we hopped on a quick phone call with Steve to get the inside scoop on his trip.
Steve grew up a big pro wrestling fan – which as many of us can admit is our guilty pleasure. But over time, his interest began to shift towards MMA. He loved the realness of the fights; it wasn’t staged or predetermined.
During his high school years, he started going to local MMA promotions within northwest Indiana (he grew up about a half hour outside of Chicago), and this is where his love for MMA began to take off. The local card featured several fighters who ended up moving on to the UFC including Stephan Bonnar and Matt Hughes.
In fact, when The Ultimate Fighter came out in 2005, Steve went to his local World Gym for a training dojo, and believe it or not Stephan Bonnar came walking through. Now, obviously, at the age of 18, when you see someone from TV walking in your gym, especially an athlete in a sport you enjoy watching, it strikes you. Turns out, Bonnar grew up outside of Steve’s hometown and went to his rival high school. The Ultimate Fighter Finale 1, which featured Bonnar, is what really got Steve hooked into the UFC and MMA. And the rest is history!
Why UFC VIP Experience
Back in 2015, Steve joined QuintEvents and the UFC VIP Experience for UFC 182.
He really looked into what we offered as the experience itself. He mentioned that he’s more into paying for an experience, even if the price is at a premium, if he is being taken care of and getting something unique that he can’t get anywhere else. And thankfully, he felt like QuintEvents gave him that exact experience – enough so that he wanted to do the VIP experience again for UFC 209.
Attending UFC 209 was especially important to him because he brought his dad along, who had retired last July after working 40 years in public education. Since then, the two had been planning to attend one of the first fights of the new year.
As Steve shared, this is something the two of them had in common. His dad would take him to wrestling shows in Chicago and attend different MMA events and a few UFC events. But, he had never attended anything like this. To Steve, this wasn’t about himself, even though he knew he would have a good time. His focus was on his dad; it was more about a gift to him than about Steve going to another fight. He wanted to make sure he would be blown away by the experience. And to our delight, he was.
For both fights, Steve highlighted the customer service:
“Both times I have done this have been fantastic. Responses and communication were fantastic when it came to asking questions, getting information, understanding pricing and the package itself. This last time [my sales rep] actually called me the night before and made sure I was aware that ticket packages would go on sale soon – within the next day or two – and to be ready. It was a very easy process. You work with an agent and then from there you determine what is going on and they make it really easy for you to pick the experience that you want to get.”
And the buck didn’t stop there. Once Steve arrived on site he was pleased to see that the customer service aspect of the experience continued.
“The on-site coordination for the event from start to finish was very organized, which I appreciate, and this ties back to the value. When you get to an event you expect everything to be in line and organized and ready to go. And you get what you paid for. Especially the second time around, you get what you paid for and more with you guys.”
Highlights of the Experience
Steve walked us through his entire experience beginning with Friday and ending on Saturday. Here’s what he had to say about the different events he attended.
“When we got to the weigh-in, we were greeted promptly; it was a smooth process getting credentials. No hassle. No issues. The seating I liked, especially in this arena. There was specific separate seating for VIPs – a clear division. We were all up from and everyone else was in the riser behind us. We truly felt like we were important. We were right up front and got to see everything clearly.”
“I really liked the backstage tour. The way things were organized backstage was great. The on-site coordinators made everyone get in line to meet the fighters. I haven’t met an athlete yet that was rude and didn’t give me the time of day. They were great and very generous with their time. It was a unique [experience] and you won’t get this [access] anywhere else.”
Steve and his dad were absolutely thrilled with their seating location and the view they had. The two of them sat in the second row with essentially an unobstructed view of the fighter walkout.
When Steve and his dad arrived at T-Mobile arena, they were met right on time and everything was punctual and orderly. They were directed right up to the Jack Daniels Lounge and given access that really made them feel like a VIP. As he mentioned, they had a lot of access to the fighters, facility, food and drinks. In his eyes, the experience had even improved from last time, which he didn’t even know could be possible.
One particular highlight of his trip was being around fighters in the Jack Daniels Lounge. In fact, what originally drew Steve in a couple of years ago was the ability to meet UFC Fighters. He really enjoys getting the opportunity to take pictures, hang out and pick their brains.
At UFC 209, Steve and his dad actually had the opportunity to have dinner with Demetrious Johnson and his wife in the Jack Daniels Lounge. Awesome, right? That was easily one of the most special moments of his trip!
“I don’t know many people who can say, from a fan perspective, ‘I could sit down and have a meal with one of the best fighters in the world.’”
We agree, Steve.
The conversation with Steve wrapped up with this:
“To put a bow on it, the time I got to spend with my dad and using QuintEvents as a vehicle made sure it was a really quality experience for both of us together because this trip is not anything we could ever duplicate.”
And of course, we couldn’t write this article without getting a few words from Steve’s dad, Bruce:
"I was very impressed with the venue and with the personal attention to the participants. And I was most impressed with the attention the fighters gave the individual participants that made them feel welcomed and valued. DJ was great! The experience was fantastic I would do it again if given the opportunity."
Overall, we loved catching up with Steve and were so pleased to hear that he and his dad had such a wonderful time at UFC 209. It is so rewarding to get feedback from the people that make us who we are.
Thanks, Steve and Bruce for being willing to share with us all the details of your trip!
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