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Consumer NZ calls for clampdown on ticket resellers

Consumer NZ calls for clampdown on ticket resellers
August 30, 2017

Inflated prices, hidden fees and misleading sales tactics have been identified as major problems in the ticket resale market, in a joint investigation by Consumer NZ and Australian consumer group Choice.

More than 1000 consumers provided information to the investigation about their experiences with ticket resellers, such as Viagogo and Ticketmaster Resale. The results of the investigation have been released today in the groups’ report Sold out: Consumers and the ticket resale industry.

Consumer NZ Head of Research Jessica Wilson said the investigation found tickets bought from resellers that were marked-up by more than 500%.

One sports fan bought a ticket to a Crusaders vs Hurricanes Super Rugby game that had a 700% mark-up.

56% of people were also charged extra fees on top of the ticket price.

By far the majority of complaints regarding hidden fees (89%) were about Viagogo – against whom the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) instituted proceedings in the Federal Court on Monday.

11% of purchasers paid for tickets that never arrived and 8% ended up with fake tickets.

Wilson said the investigation also found many purchasers didn’t know they were dealing with a ticket resale site, with 85% of people who bought tickets via resale website being  unaware the website they used to purchase tickets was a reseller.

Wilson emphasised that consumers are being “duped” by the industry’s sales tactics, highlighting that in advertising, Viagogo claims it’s an “official” site.

She added “the company’s website also pressures consumers to buy, claiming tickets are in high demand and selling fast.”

Consumer NZ is calling for New Zealand’s Commerce Commission to take action against Viagogo and other resellers that risk breaching the Fair Trading Act, highlighting the ACCC’s action against Viagogo which is based on allegations that the company had misled consumers.

Wilson said action was also needed from event promoters and official ticket agencies. Practices used by these companies can create the impression tickets are in short supply, pressuring consumers to pay excessive prices for tickets from resale sites.

Promotors and ticket companies should be clear about the number of tickets available for general sale, the number of events planned and the number of seats per venue.

The industry also needs to invest in measures to stop professional scalpers buying up large quantities of tickets that are then sold on the resale market.

Sold out: Consumers and the ticket resale industry has been released today by Consumer NZ and Choice. Click here for more information.

Case studies can be found at www.consumer.org.nz

28th August 2017 - ACCC COMMENCES LEGAL ACTION AGAINST TICKET RESELLER VIAGOGO 

24th August 2017 - CRICKET AUSTRALIA CANCELS 3,000 SCALPED TICKETS FOR PERTH ASHES TEST

8th August 2017 - LPA RELEASES GUIDE TO HELP CONSUMERS AVOID TICKETING SCAMS

18th July 2017 - WARNING THAT RESOLD AND SCALPED COMMONWEALTH GAMES TICKETS WILL BE CANCELLED

22nd May 2017 - INFLATED TICKET RESALE PRICES IMPACTING CONSUMERS’ DISCRETIONARY ENTERTAINMENT SPENDING 

17th May 2017 - PROMOTERS SLAM EXCLUSIVE WELLINGTON VENUES TICKET DEAL

20th April 2017 - CONSUMER NZ INVESTIGATES TICKET RESELLERS

22nd March 2017 - SENATE PASSES RESOLUTION CALLING FOR REFORM OF LAWS AGAINST TICKET SCALPING

8th March 2017 - CHOICE MAGAZINE ACCUSES TICKET RESALE SITES OF MISLEADING FANS

23rd February 2017 - TICKET RESELLER VIAGOGO HIT BY MULTIPLE SPANISH LEGAL ACTIONS

13th January 2017 - SOUTHLANDERS WARNED ABOUT OVERSEAS TICKETING WEBSITES 

24th September 2016 - GROWING USE OF BOTS FOR HOT SPORT AND ENTERTAINMENT TICKETS REIGNITE SCALPING DEBATE 

30th August 2016 - BAYCOURT WARNS AGAINST ONLINE TICKET SCALPERS 


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