This is quite funny, and it’s taken a whole week to come to fruition, but it just goes to show you what happens when you stick to your guns, don’t take no for an answer, and don’t be fooled into thinking that companies can always enforce their terms and conditions.

Basically I wasn’t happy with the vip area at the lovebox festival so I asked for my money back. Here’s what happened:


Customer     21/07/2008 11:08 AM
To all concerned,

I wish to have my money refunded for the two VIP tickets I purchased for the Saturday at the lovebox festival.
the reasons being as follows:

1. There was nothing remotely resembling VIP or any other premium or exclusive facilities as I was led to believe when I bought the tickets.
2. The ‘vip area’ lacked a spa, hot-tub, masseuses, table-service and restaurant area as promised. These facilities were the reason I was happy to pay a premium, and were what I expected in return for the £200 pounds I paid for myself and my friend.
3. The roof terrace wasn’t in view of any stage.
4. The area and facilites were clearly not adequate for the amount of people being sold vip tickets, with the result that the bar quickly generated queues as long as any other part of the festival.
5. The vip toilets became unusable by mid-afternoon, without any maintenance whatsoever. In contrast, the standard toilet facilities at the venue were regularly maintained. however there were still very large queues, making either option unnacceptable. I paid a premium for vip facilities and shouldn’t have had to queue for the cubicles, as I was forced to.
6. At some points there was even a queue to get into the ‘vip area’
7. I decided it would be a good idea to remedy the situation by walking home, using a well maintained toilet, getting myself a drink without queuing for half an hour and returning to the festival. I was then informed that despite having a ‘vip’ wristband, that I wouldn’t be allowed re-entry, contrary to that which my friend and I were advised when we arrived at the festival. Consequently I was unable improve the day by using my own facilities.

FYI, The rest of the festival was a success and I enjoyed the music and the company of my friends. I believe some of the problems occurred as a result of too many vip tickets being sold, although some of the promised facilities were totally absent regardless. I’m not cynical enough to believe that this was a simple and greedy way to sell tickets at treble the cost, simply poor planning on the part of the organisers and in particular those who organised the ‘vip’ facilities.

As a result of not being given what I paid for, what was advertised, and what I was intentionally led to believe I would get, I would like my money refunded in full (£200), for both of the tickets (one of which was a present for a friend)

Please advise as soon as possible when/how you intend to make the refund.

Many thanks,

J C

Response (TM)     21/07/2008 04:38 PM
Dear ****

Thanks for your e-mail

We are sincerely sorry to hear of your reasons for writing to Ticketmaster. It never pleases us to hear that what should have been an enjoyable day was in fact a disappointment. As a ticketing agency Ticketmaster work on behalf of the venue, promoter and producers of each show, and as such work upon the instruction of the aforementioned bodies. Ticketmaster can not be held responsible for what takes place at the event in terms of artist performance, technical issues, organisation and staffing. I have however forwarded your complaint and your booking to the promoters for their consideration. Unfortunately i can not guarantee a response from them.

I am sorry i am unable to offer you any further assistance at this time and assure you of our best intentions.

Customer   21/07/2008 05:50 PM
TM,

I bought the ticket from ticketmaster. whilst you are not responsible for the actions of the event organisers, you are responsible for refunds, as you are the retailer of the ticket. I’m protected by consumer regulations which state quite clearly that it is the responsibility of the retailer to provide refunds if the product or service being sold isn’t provided as advertised.

It isn’t satisfactory, or adequate to your legal requirements to merely pass on my complaint, if you’re acting as an agent for a supplier of something which isn’t being sold as advertised, you have to deal with them. I only have to deal with you, as you are the agent.

Please refund the full value of the tickets. This is your legal responsibility.

Many thanks,

****

Response (TM)     22/07/2008 11:47 AM
Dear ****

Thanks for your response.

As a ticket agency, Ticketmaster act on behalf of the promoter, venue and event organiser in the sale of tickets.  When purchasing tickets, customers are not only entering into a contract with Ticketmaster but also the promoter, venue and event organiser of which certain Terms and Conditions must be adhered to prior to purchase.

Ticketmaster played no part in the organisation of the above show and event package nor were responsible for the service encountered at the venue.  We are dissatisfied to hear of the substandard service described and Ticketmaster in no way dispute the level of upset that was incurred on the evening. As i mentioned previously i have forwarded this complaint to the promoters for their consideration.

In the meantime Ticketmaster sincerely apologise for any disappointment incurred on the evening and we thank you for your patience whilst this matter was investigated.

Assuring you of our best intentions at all times.

Customer (****)     22/07/2008 12:38 PM
TM,

The terms and conditions entered into prior to purchase are an attempt to absolve ticketmaster of any merchant’s responsibility. They are therefore COMPLETELY unenforceable. If I were to get you to sign a contract waiving me of my legal responsibilities, the contract would be null and void.

I refer you to the “Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations 1999” – It’s an EC directive, and unlike ticketmaster’s terms and conditions, it IS legally enforceable.

Consumer law is something I’m more than slightly familiar with and I know when I’m dealing with someone being instructed to fob off customers with canned responses to complaints. I won’t back be be backing down on this until it’s satisfactorily resolved.

Ticketmaster have two choices – either

A. Refund my money, as I wasn’t given what I paid for, and tickmaster took my money for something falsely advertised,

or

B. Be forced by court judgement to refund my money, and pay all legal fees brought forth by the case, which in my experience would probably be 10-20 times the amount of money paid for the tickets.

Please let me know ASAP whether you intend to take the reasonable route or the expensive one. If it’s the latter, please can you forward contact details of your legal dept or appointed representatives.

Many thanks,
****

Response (TM)     23/07/2008 04:32 PM
Dear ****,

I have forwarded this to our legal department and i will be back in touch as soon as possible.

Thank you for your continued patience

Customer (****)     23/07/2008 05:46 PM

Many thanks TM,

Your patience in this matter is also appreciated.

****

Response (TM)     24/07/2008 10:40 AM
Dear ****,

I have been informed that you are going to be contacted by the promoters today regarding this. Can you please let me know if thet don’t get in touch with you.

Many thanks

Customer (****)     24/07/2008 05:13 PM
Hi TM,

I’ve heard nothing yet.

****

Response (TM)     25/07/2008 12:06 PM
Dear ****,

Thanks for keeping me updated. I have been informed by the account managers that the promoters are formulating a response and will be in contact on Monday. I am sorry this is later than i first mentioned.

I’d like to thank you for your patience and i have been assured they will contact you on Monday.

Many thanks

Customer (****)     25/07/2008 12:27 PM
Hi TM.

I’m not really sure that having the promoters “formulate a response” is going to appease me in any way whatsoever. If they’re “formulating a full refund” then let’s go with that, otherwise please forward details of your legal dept so I can carry on as planned and get a refund from ticketmaster.

Many thanks.

****

Response (TM)     25/07/2008 02:19 PM
Dear ****.

I am sincerely sorry for the delay in resolving this matter but the promoters have just agreed that we can refund the booking in full. I have actioned this for you so £200 is now credited back in your account. It may take a few days to show on your statements.

Any further questions feel free to contact us

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