Ticket reseller Viagogo will face the Federal Court amid claims that it has been deceptive and misleading to customers.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) is taking the Swiss company to court after it received more than 400 complaints in one year about the company from consumers.
The competition watchdog is claiming that Viagogo has breached Australian Consumer Law by not being clear about the ticketing fees they charge and the type of ticket consumers are purchasing.
“We allege that Viagogo failed to disclose significant and unavoidable fees upfront in the ticket price, including a 27.6% booking fee for most events and a handling fee,” Delia Rickard, Deputy Chair of the ACCC said.
For example, the ACCC says Viagogo was advertising tickets to The Book Of Mormon for $135 which then blew out after $42.50 of fees were added. Furthermore, tickets to Cat Stevens increased from $450 for two tickets to $579.95 after $125 booking fee and $4.95 handling fees were included.
Fans were also led to the Viagogo site from Google without being completely aware that they were purchasing from a reseller.
“By using the word ‘official’, we allege that Viagogo represented in these ads that consumers could buy official original tickets, when in fact Viagogo is a platform for tickets that are being on-sold by others,” Rickard said.
On top of this, NSW Fair Trading has revealed it has received 187 consumer complaints about Viagogo.
“Complaints to date have included delayed delivery, events being cancelled, heavily marked-up prices, hidden fees, and failure to provide refunds,” Minister for Better Regulation Matt Kean said in a statement.
“With most complaints relating to two or more tickets, Fair Trading has estimated around 600 consumers have been ripped off at a cost of almost $130,000.
NSW Fair Trading has made 194 attempts to contact the company, however, they have largely gone unanwered.
This year, tickets to popular concerts have been resold for huge prices on the website. Music Feeds spotted tickets to Ed Sheeran being resold on the site for close to $1,000, despite an original price of $165.
Green Day tickets were also being resold on the platform for $450, up from the original price of $150.
The Swiss company launched here back in 2013 and has since been joined by similar platforms like Ticketmaster Resale.