Tickemaster, AEG to Begin Offering Refunds for Some Coronavirus-Related Concert Postponements
Live Nation/Ticketmaster and AEG Presents will soon begin offering refunds for tickets to some concerts that have been postponed due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The new policies will go into effect on May 1.
According to Billboard, AEG's plan, announced on Thursday (April 16), will give fans with tickets to postponed shows 30 days from the time of postponement to seek a refund. For any events previously postponed in March and April, the 30-day window will begin on May 1.
Refunds will only be available once a postponed show has been rescheduled, however; those with tickets to shows that have yet to be rescheduled will have to wait to request a refund until a new show date is announced. Fans with tickets to any canceled AEG event, meanwhile, will automatically receive a refund.
The terms of Live Nation/Ticketmaster's new refund plan, announced Friday (April 17), Billboard reports, are largely the same as AEG's: Once a postponed event is rescheduled, fans will have 30 days to request a refund, and refunds will be automatically sent out for canceled shows. The company developed the plan in concert with AEG and a number of major talent agencies.
However, Live Nation/Ticketmaster will also offer fans the option to receive a "Rock When You Are Ready" credit, worth 150 percent of a ticket's original value, instead of an outright refund, thereby keeping the money within the company. Fans can also choose to donate their tickets to healthcare workers, with the company matching those donations.
In light of the thousands of events that have been postponed or canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic, both ticketing companies and secondary sellers have drawn ire because of their refund policies. A class-action lawsuit has been filed against StubHub in particular due to its change in policy, which has tied up ticketholders' money even after events have been canceled.
Per Billboard, Live Nation / Ticketmaster and AEG executives were waiting to announce their refund policies until after they had worked through the details with artists and their teams, promoters and venue staff. Ticketmaster, specifically, quickly sends all ticket revenue to those clients, and it is up to those parties to determine the policies for refunds.
“It just takes time to work through the math and work with the calendar. When you move a Friday show to a Monday night, you don't know what is going to happen with the fans,” a Live Nation source tells Billboard. “We had to move slow to get it right, and we hoped by May we would have some clarity on dates and agreed terms.”
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