Ticketmaster to pay $4.5M for misleading prices

Officials found Ticketmaster’s advertised prices did not reflect the true cost to the consumer

Ticketmaster tickets and gift cards. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Paul Sakuma)

The Competition Bureau says Ticketmaster will pay $4.5 million in penalties and associated costs to settle a case investigating misleading pricing claims for its online ticket sales.

The bureau said Thursday that Ticketmaster LLC, TNow Entertainment Group Inc. and Ticketmaster Canada LP will pay a $4-million penalty and $500,000 for the bureau’s investigation costs.

The companies will also create a compliance program as part of a consent agreement.

The news comes after the bureau found Ticketmaster’s advertised prices did not reflect the true cost to the consumer as the online ticket service added mandatory fees later in the purchasing process that often added more than 20 per cent to the cost and in some cases over 65 per cent.

The bureau found the initial prices misleading despite consumers seeing the additional fees before completing their transaction.

Commissioner Matthew Boswell said Canadians should be able to trust that they will pay the advertised prices when purchasing tickets online.

“The bureau expects all ticket vendors to take note and review their marketing practices, knowing that the bureau continues to examine similar issues in the marketplace and will take action as necessary,” Boswell said in a statement.

Ticketmaster said Thursday it is committed to leading in consumer safety and transparency and has adopted practices to protect Canadians.

It said it clearly discloses if tickets are being sold at the original face value or are being resold at prices that may be above or below face value

The company also bans the practice of listing tickets for sale at inflated prices before they are even purchased and identifies if it is the official primary ticket marketplace for an event.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Wind warning issued for central Alberta

City of Red Deer and Lacombe under wind warning

Only 13 new COVID-19 cases confirmed by Alberta gov’t Saturday

There’s currently only two active cases in province’s central zone

Central Alberta naturalists fear pristine headwaters will be contaminated by coal mine

Chutes of the Ram constitute one of Earth’s ‘most beautiful’ spots

Every Albertan eligible for COVID-19 testing

22 new cases confirmed on Friday

Fast-food restaurants serving up free non-medical masks

Free protection will come in packages of four

QUIZ: Test your knowledge of the world of summer sports

In a typical year, there are plenty of summer sporting events and tournaments held across Canada

Sweats are in, slacks are out: Could ‘work-leisure’ become business as usual?

Many desk-dwellers are opting for sweatpants as work-from-home era has loosened up dress codes

Minimum wage goes up June 1 in B.C. as businesses face COVID-19 challenges

Increase is part of the government’s pledge to implement a $15 per hour minimum wage

In hard-hit Quebec, families struggle to mourn those lost to COVID-19

The province recorded more than 50,000 confirmed cases and over 4,300 deaths as of Friday

‘Little orange dot:’ Lone Alberta NDP MP says she offers different perspective

The born-and-raised Albertan held onto Edmonton Strathcona for her party

COVID-19 cancelled their wedding plans, so they married on a B.C. mountaintop

Ceremony was live streamed to friends and family around the world

International student worry about pandemic as decisions loom on travel to Canada

Zohra Shahbuddin is weighing whether to enrol this fall or put off coming to Canada until next year

How finding a ministerial home for CMHC caused ‘madness’ in November

The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. manages the national housing strategy

Most Read