An advertisement for the event stated
“Tickets €49.90 Incl. booking fee
The complainant considered the advertising for the concert tickets to be misleading. He said the tickets were advertised at a price with the booking fee included, however tickets were not possible to buy at that price as there was an additional fee charged by the ticket booking agent.
The advertisers said that they believed the additional charge that was incurred in this instance may have been a service charge. They said that the booking fee was a percentage that Ticketmaster take off the promoter for each ticket and that in order to run their operations, Ticketmaster charge customers a Service Charge which was applicable after the ticket price. They said that this information was clearly outlined on their website and provided the weblink to the US Ticketmaster website for further information on such fees, which outlined how the ticket prices and fees were determined. This set out the various elements of the total cost of a ticket which could be made up of face value price, service fee and order processing fee, delivery fee, facility charge and taxes.
The Complaints Committee considered the detail of the complaint and the advertisers’ response. They noted the advertisers’ comments on how the ticket prices were determined and the breakdown of the fees and charges provided.
The Committee noted that the advertisement had stated ‘including booking fee’ and considered that the lack of clear information that other charges applied was likely to mislead consumers that the tickets at the price quoted could be purchased for the price quoted.
The Committee also noted the Code requirement that the amount of charges such as those arising from the method of purchase or payment should be stated in advertising. In the absence of this information, they considered the advertisement was in breach of Section 4.1, 4.4 and 4.23 of the Code.
The Complaints Committee told the advertisers to ensure that advertising contained clear information about the amounts of additional charges such as those arising from the method of purchase or payment.