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Ticketmaster to Eliminate Hidden Fees In New Policy
Christian Eede , June 16th, 2023 13:31

The practice of adding hidden fees to ticket prices had been criticised by US President Joe Biden in a February speech

Live Nation Entertainment, the company that owns Ticketmaster, is introducing a new policy which, it says, will eliminate hidden fees.

The "all-in pricing experience" will allow ticket buyers to see the true cost of a ticket for a concert or event before making a purchase, marking a break with previous policy which saw a number of hidden handling and processing fees added just before a buyer made a purchase. "Fans typically know tickets will include service fees, but seeing the total cost from the start makes buying tickets easier and consistent with other retail shopping experiences," Live Nation Entertainment said in a statement announcing the change.

President Joe Biden had called out ticketing giants like Ticketmaster over their practice of adding "junk fees" during his State of the Union address in February. "We can stop service fees on tickets to concerts and sporting events and make companies disclose all the fees upfront," he said.

National Independent Talent Organization (NITO), which has been calling on ticketing companies to fix their broken system, said in a statement responding to Live Nation Entertainment's new policy: "We applaud President Biden's announcement on ticket fee transparency as an important first step. NITO calls on all ticket sellers to clearly show fans the total price of a ticket upfront, and also provide an itemised breakdown so fans understand the ticket price set by the artist and the fees added by ticket sellers. Until Congress acts to eliminate excessive fees and secondary ticketing is carefully regulated, millions of consumers will still be the victim of predatory ticketing practices."

The practice of adding hidden fees to ticket prices has come under increasing fire in recent years, with the company overseeing sales for high-profile tours by artists like Taylor Swift. In March, The Cure's Robert Smith took Ticketmaster to task when he asked the company to explain its "unduly high" additional fees. The company ultimately offered partial refunds to buyers of tickets for The Cure's US tour.