Stay safe when you use second-hand ticket sites
Published 26 October 2015
Thinking of buying tickets from a secondary ticketing website? Find out your rights here.
The Consumer Rights Act 2015 has now come into force to make it clear what rights you have when buying various goods and services. If you have a dispute about anything you’ve paid for, you’ll no longer have to go trawling through various pieces of legislation – it’s all in one place.
If you’ve bought tickets for an upcoming gig or concert from a secondary ticketing website, the Consumer Rights Act will also give you some extra protection for this too. Let’s take a look at what your rights will be when you use sites like Viagogo to buy tickets for your favourite band.
Changes in the law
Generally, when you buy tickets from a secondary ticketing website – including Viagogo, Seatwave, StubHub and Get Me In! – you’ll be doing this because they’re sold out on all of the traditional sites. As the tickets are in demand, this generally means they’ll be sold for an inflated price on the secondary ticketing website, and customers can often end up paying more than twice the face value of the tickets.
According to Part 3, Chapter Five of the Consumer Rights Act, secondary ticketing sites must now display how much tickets originally cost. Sellers on these sites are still allowed to charge whatever they want for tickets, but customers will be more informed that they’re paying considerably more than the face value so they’ll be able to make an informed decision about whether they want to pay the higher price.
The ticketing websites will also need to be upfront with customers if there’s anything wrong with the tickets that are being sold – like if they’ll be sat separately in the arena or if they’ll offer an obscured view. All of the sellers on the second-hand ticket sites are individuals meaning that in the past, the website wouldn’t necessarily know whether they were offering the best seats. However, the Consumer Rights Act now means these sites have a duty to find out information relating to the tickets you’re buying – otherwise you could be entitled to a refund if there are any problems.
Perhaps most importantly, second-hand ticket sites now have to show a contact email address in case you buy tickets and there are any problems, like if they don’t turn up in time. This means that if you’re ripped off by a dodgy seller, the website will ensure you get your money back.
Saving on tickets
If you are thinking about buying tickets for a gig that’s already sold out, make sure you buy from a reputable site. You don’t want to pay over the odds for a ticket only to find out it’s not real.
Not all second-hand ticketing sites will charge you an inflated price – there are some sites designed to only offer tickets at face value. Twickets is one site you might want to check out, where you can set up alerts in case any tickets become available for an event you’re looking to go to. Alternatively, Scarlet Mist is a long-running ticket exchange website where you can guarantee you won’t pay any more than face value for tickets.
Make sure that you don’t get ripped off when you’re buying tickets – check out our ticketing scam blog for more details.