The reselling of tickets above their face value, known as “scalping”, generally drives up the prices of tickets. Scalping is illegal at major sports venues in Queensland and Victoria but not illegal in NSW, as the government believes event organisers should be responsible for stopping scalping.
Most ticketing agencies specify that scalping via auction sites is a breach of sales conditions. To prevent scalping, the purchase of 10 tickets or more is typically handled by a ticketing agent’s group booking sales team. The agencies can also cancel the tickets and blacklist the credit cards used to buy tickets suspected of being scalped.
In 2007, when Creative Festival Entertainment (CFE), promoter of the Big Day Out, tried to stop tickets from being snapped up by scalpers, eBay took it to court. CFE had printed warnings on the tickets that any resold for profit would be cancelled. The court found this was deceptive and misleading, as the company couldn’t possibly track down all the tickets that had been resold for profit.
Generally, if you sell your tickets via an online auction site such as eBay because you cannot attend the event, it is not considered scalping – provided the selling price is not more than the face value of the ticket.
Consumers will soon be able to buy cheaper tickets through new discount ticketing site www.lastix.com.au launching in June 2009. MyTickets’ last-minute service will allow event owners, promoters and sporting organisations to advertise unsold tickets on the website 14 days before the event date. During this time, consumers can buy tickets at reduced prices, access “two for one” type offers or buy a “last tix combo” package where, for example, they watch cricket in the day and go to a concert in the evening.
On the day of performance, Lastix may also offer consumers tickets that did not sell out despite the oft-advertised “selling out fast” media hype. “With Lastix, consumers will access great last-minute ticket deals and hopefully get the chance to experience entertainment they might not normally see,” says Christopher Plowman, Chief Executive of MyTickets. The good news is that you can grab a really good bargain through Lastix. The downside is that if you really want to see a particular show or game, leaving it to the last minute risks not getting tickets at all.