Ticket site closed downThe government shuts down ticket website

07 February 2006

An online agency which sold concert, sports and theatre tickets at inflated prices has been shut down by the government.

The Department for Trade and Industry has petitioned the High Court for Getmetickets.net to be wound up in the public interest.

The move to shut the London based company - which traded principally via the website www.getmetickets.net - follows a government investigation into the ticket agency.

The official receiver said the company did not appear to have sufficient tickets to supply all its customers who have ordered and paid for tickets.

All available tickets will be distributed to customers in the order that customers paid for the tickets.

The official receiver said: 'My staff are sending all the tickets recovered from the premises to these customers on that basis and they should receive tickets within the next few days. There are no other tickets available for any other customers.

'Unfortunately the official receiver is not in a position to make any exchanges or refunds, nor to enter into discussion with individual customers about tickets they have or have not received or any other such issues. Nor is the official receiver able to guarantee that any tickets provided to customers in this way are genuine.'

The Society of Ticket Agents and Retailers (Star) was formed by the ticket industry to promote high standards of service.

Sky-high charges

It recommends that if you buy a ticket from an agency you should choose a legitimate agent, such as a Star member. You can check who is a member by ringing the Star helpline on 0870 603 9011 or by visiting its website.

The Star code of practice says its members must 'clearly identify the face value of any tickets purchased and any additional booking fees' and 'highlight any terms and conditions, including transferability, cancellation and viewing restrictions'.

However, a Which? investigation in October 2003 found several Star members were breaching the code, while some were ripping off theatre-goers with sky-high charges.

If you're buying tickets you should use the box office where possible, as some don't levy fees. If you phone the box office, you could be redirected to a ticket agency, so be sure to check who you're speaking to.

When buying via an agency, make sure you know the face value of the ticket you're buying. If an agency can't confirm the price, don't buy the ticket as you've no way to tell how good a seat you're getting. You should also make sure you phone different agencies, as prices can vary quite significantly.