How do I get a refund from an unauthorised secondary ticket seller?

Follow these simple steps to get your money back if you've been sold dud tickets by a secondary ticket website

Secondary ticket marketplace

You have fewer rights if you purchase tickets from a secondary ticket seller.

But, there are certain scenarios where you're entitled to claim a refund if you purchased from an unauthorised secondary site, and there are steps you can take to get that refund.

There have been several reported issues with people buying tickets from secondary sellers, including:

  • not receiving tickets
  • the ticket received was invalid or not the ticket the buyer thought they purchased
  • buyers felt misled, thinking they were buying from a primary vendor, or by the costs and service fees
  • buyers felt they were not provided with full upfront terms and conditions of the ticket, or relevant details about restrictions – including resale restrictions.

Know your rights

The Consumer Rights Act has a whole chapter on ticket reselling and says you must be told:

  • the particular seat or standing area your ticket is for, including the block of seats and row number
  • any restrictions on using the ticket
  • the face value of the ticket.

1 Complain to the secondary ticketing website

In the first instance you need to contact the website that sold you the tickets and ask to cancel the tickets and request a refund.

Once your complaint has been recorded, you should regularly log into your user account and check for a notice of cancellation of tickets and a notice of a refund.

If you’re not offered a refund, you don’t have to accept this situation. Instead, write to them again: restate your claim, and the reasons for your complaint.

Keep records of all your correspondence, take screenshots and gather any other evidence in support of your refund claim.

Secondary ticket website contact details
GetMeInTel: 0333 321 9988 (8am - 8pm , daily)
SeatwaveEmail: supportuk@seatwave.com
Tel: +44 333 003 5930 (8am - 8pm Monday to Saturday and 10am - 6pm on Sundays)
StubHubEmail: service@stubhub.co.uk
Tel: 0800 358 8585 (9am - 9pm, daily)
ViagogoEmail: customerserviceuk@viagogo.com
Tel: 020 31376080

2 Contact your bank or credit card company

If your claim is ignored or refused by the secondary ticketing company you should contact your bank or credit card company (if you paid using a credit card). Make them aware of your experience and the complaint you’ve made.

If you paid by credit card  If you’ve spent more than £100 and less than £30,000 you can claim on your credit card if something goes wrong. 

Under Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act, your credit card company is jointly liable for any breach of contract or misrepresentation.

If you paid by debit card  You can ask your card provider to reverse a transaction on your credit or debit card in a process called chargeback. 

Unlike Section 75, chargeback isn’t a right or law and offers no guarantees, but it is a way your bank may be able to help you.

Chargeback is also particularly useful where the cost of the tickets was under £100 and Section 75 doesn't apply.

Either process allows you to get your money back, if you believe the goods you purchased are damaged, different from those described or didn’t arrive.

You will need to support your claim with correspondence and evidence so your bank or card provider can see you’ve already taken reasonable steps to resolve the issue yourself.

If you are unsatisfied with your bank or credit card provider, or your claim is unsuccessful, you can ask the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) to investigate your case.

Contact the CMA

The Competition & Markets Authority (CMA) is currently investigating suspected breaches of consumer protection law in the online secondary ticketing market.

Send information about your case to: secondary.tickets@cma.gsi.gov.uk

3 Small claims court

You also have the option of taking your case to a small claims court.

It’s worth checking your household insurance to see whether your policy includes free legal advice, or finding a solicitor who offers a free initial consultation.

Before taking this step we advise that you take a look at our advice on writing a letter before action.

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