Trying to buy concert, sports or theatre tickets can be difficult on the internet because it’s hard to compare the best prices between ticket sellers with all the hidden fees and service charges. Hidden fees and service charges that crop up after you buy tickets online or click on a ticket deal are all too common on the internet.
A recent New York investigation into Webloyalty and Ticketmaster went after them and several other companies about the hidden fees for signing up for discount clubs presumably to get better seats for concerts.
Both Webloyalty and Ticketmaster were cited and fined for the deceptive business practices as well as a number of other large companies such as Pizza Hut and Orbitz. As the New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo said, “In this all too common Internet scheme, consumers were tricked into paying for monthly services for a discount club while shopping online at trusted retailers”.
These are not the only hidden fees ticket buyers have to beware of. Most of the largest ticketing companies employ a method of hiding fees when a consumer proceeds to buy tickets from their websites. What happens is they advertise a lower price for a ticket to attract the consumer to their website to buy from them and then after proceeding with the order the hidden fees crop up.
The largest ticket reseller, Stubhub, will add a 10% fee after you enter all of your credit card information. They do tell you this in fine print up front, but most consumers don’t notice this until after the purchase is made. Even then you are not guaranteed the tickets for several days while they track down the ticket seller in many cases.
Ticketliquidator is another of the largest because they have dozens of affiliates that operate in the same manner. You might choose their company to buy your tickets from because initially their prices look much lower than the competition. They pay big bucks to be first with Google and compete for the top spots with Stubhub and others.
But after starting the purchase process you first you must select your country of origin, then choose your method of delivery and voila! A service fee pops up in an area above the Delivery Options box and most consumers never notice it because they proceed down to fill in their information. And the service charge is substantial in most cases.
It’s just common practice to proceed down a form and these guys know this and hope you move on and either don’t notice or assume all ticket sellers do the same thing, hide fees and service charges. A few companies such as Ticketsnow will list a price, but when you select those seats on the following page you find the large service charge to go with those tickets.
Even Ticketmaster has decided after a huge number of consumer complaints to stop hiding service charges and fees and now they include the breakdown of the fees in the total price. Ticketsnow is owned by Ticketmaster so you would assume they would follow through and do the same.
The only reason for ticket sellers employ hidden fees is to hide the fact they have higher ticket prices than their competition. But not all ticket brokers are created equal and a few such as Preferred Seating Tickets list the full price of the ticket from the start. Shipping fees are additional but all the ticket companies pretty much keep those at very reasonable prices.
So if you’re lookin to buy tickets on the internet you must first realize that the first options presented by Google paid to be there and may not be the best choice. Add no hidden fees to your search for tickets to limit the results to those that don’t add hidden fees or buy your tickets from Preferred Seating Tickets, where there are no hidden fees.