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Inflated booking charges putting off audiences

Almost half of audiences said the experience of having to pay extra charges had put them off booking tickets online for other events, according to a new survey.

The research by consumer group Which? found two thirds of people who were charged a booking fee thought it was too high compared to the face value of their ticket and 93% said companies should explain their extra compulsory charges upfront.

Around half of those surveyed who had made an online booking in the last 12 months said paying booking fees and delivery fees had put them off from buying tickets for another event.

The organisation questioned more than 2,000 people online for the survey.

It also carried out a mystery shopping investigation that found people paying extra charges of up to a third of their ticket's face value.

It also found people being charged to print tickets at home and paying to collect them at the box office.

Which? said firms should show all compulsory fees upfront and explain what they are for.

Its executive director, Richard Lloyd, said: "Consumers tell us they are feeling ripped off by the level of ticketing charges and the lack of transparency means it is almost impossible for people to compare prices when booking online.

"We want to see the ticketing industry Play Fair on Ticket Fees, so that all charges are displayed upfront and with a clear explanation of what they're for."

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200418