How concert tickets fees are rising and how to avoid paying more

Consumer’s Report staff brought forth a somewhat unaddressed issue known as the “Ticket Fee Frenzy” in their August 2016 issue and elaborated on the new scheme introduced by online ticketing platforms and ticket apps such as ‘Ticketmaster and others which led to an increase in the prices of concert tickets. This scheme included the tacking of unnecessary charges along with the original prices of rock concert prices, mainly in the Midwest. The false allegations, such as delivery charges, facility charges, were tagged on to increase the costs of the tickets. The concert tickets’ fee that initially consisted of 20% of the ticket’s face value has been increased to almost 27% of the ticket’s face value, as reported by the Government Accountability Office in 2018.

This enormous increase in the prices of concert tickets caused a sudden rage to grow in the fans as a result of which, almost 7000 rock fans wrote to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), demanding this newly introduced concept to be diminished because attaching unnecessary charges such as a service fee of $23 for one concert ticket is unreasonable. These unfair charges have not only been applied by Ticketmaster but also by Stubhub that has the smartest approach to deceive the fans as it provides the details of the additional costs after the personal information has been inserted. For instance, a concert ticket of $66.50 is increased to almost $83 after the inclusion of unreasonable service fees and fulfillment fees. As a result of the fan’s demands, FTC hosted a workshop regarding the ticketing industry, which included the industry representatives of Ticketmaster, SeatGeek, and StubHub.

In this session, previously selected questions’ cards were addressed by the attorney of FTC’s advertising projects. Almost all the items included, demanded an elaborate explanation for the charges attached to the ticketing fee. If we compare the rock concert ticket fees with those of movie tickets and museum tickets, that add on additional costs of $1.50 or $2.50 or sometimes even less, in the case of purchasing museum tickets from Ticket apps such as Fandago, the little additional fees seems reasonable as it can be used to bring up the system.

This system of additional fees does not support the artists in any way but instead helps the Ticket apps themselves in making more profit by using the name of some of the most renowned artists and producers such as Guns N’ Roses etc. According to a study conducted by GAO, the event planning of the fancy events such as Broadway shows, etc. puts on an additional fee of 20% of the face value, but they have an odd premium on popstars.

These unfair means of earning more profit have been long followed by Ticketmaster, Stubhub making it one of America’s most hated companies. But this recent session held by FTC might serve as hope to retrieve and diminish these unreasonable charges that are tagged on to concert ticket prices and might ensure that these ticket apps provide the fans with a reasonable fee.

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