It is estimated that up to 40,000 people from both sides of the Tasman are interested in attending Anzac Day services in Gallipoli on 25 April 2015. As the site is a small constrained area surrounded by the sea and steep terrain, it can comfortably and safely hold only about a quarter of that number.
The Turkish Government has formally agreed that the maximum capacity of the site is 10,500 people. Demand for places at the 2015 Gallipoli commemorations is expected to significantly exceed this capacity. Australia and New Zealand, in consultation with Turkey, have therefore agreed to ballot attendance passes.
Of the 10,500 attendance passes, Australia will receive 8,000, New Zealand 2,000, and the remaining 500 will be reserved for those from Turkey, official representation from other countries involved in the conflict, and a small number of VIPs from Australia and New Zealand.
The 1:4 allocation ratio is based on the relative number of casualties suffered by New Zealand and Australia during the Gallipoli campaign in 1915.
New Zealand attendance passes were allocated as follows:
- 10 percent of places (100 double passes/200 places in total) by ballot specifically to direct descendants of Gallipoli veterans.
- 10 percent of places (100 double passes/200 places in total) by ballot specifically to veterans of all conflicts.
- 75 percent of places (750 double passes/1500 places in total) by ballot to all New Zealanders (including descendants and veterans who were unsuccessful in their specific ballot).
- 5 percent of places (100 places in total) reserved for allocation by the Government to special groups such as youth, and others where it is not appropriate to ballot. None of these passes will be available to official representatives.
The ballot cascaded so those direct descendants and veterans unsuccessful in their special group were also included in the geeneral public ballot.