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Posted on February 15, 2018 by staff

New rules to protect event-goers from rip-off ticket prices

The government is officially enforcing new rules to clamp down on ticket touting and protect consumers from rip-off prices.

The new rules, which will come into force in April 2018, will require sellers and platforms to provide more information about resold event tickets.

This will include details such as the location of seats, disclosure of any restrictions and the original price of the ticket itself.

For the first time, resellers will also have to supply the unique ticket number (UTN) to the purchaser if the event organiser or primary seller specifies one, helping to identify the tickets seat, standing area or location.

“All too often people are left feeling ripped off when buying tickets from resale websites,” said consumer minister Andrew Griffiths.

“Whether it’s a major music festival or a stadium concert, people want to know they’re paying a fair price for tickets to see the events they love.

“We are already taking steps to crack down on touts using “bots” to bulk buy tickets for resale and the CMA is investigating suspected breaches of consumer protection law online and today we are going even further, making it easier for consumers to understand what they are buying to help save them from rip off ticket prices.”

Margot James, minister for digital and the creative industries, added: “We want real fans to get the chance to see their favourite stars at a fair price. That is why we are clamping down on touts using bots to buy huge numbers of tickets, only to sell them on at rip-off prices.”

The government said its published guidance demonstrates its commitment to improve conditions for consumers in the secondary market.

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) will be taking enforcement action against secondary ticketing websites suspected of breaking consumer law, while the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) are investigating whether secondary ticketing websites have broken advertising rules.

As of 7 February, Google announced that it will require ticket resellers to be certified before they can advertise through its AdWords service.