Monday 23 April 2018

Fan outcry as online charges heaped on children’s prices

Martin Breheny

Martin Breheny

DESPITE the country being in its deepest recession for decades, Ticketmaster are adding up to 33.3pc extra costs on children's tickets for GAA games.

It's a massive increase that Ticketmaster have described as "a minimum service charge."

A ticket costing €3 for Saturday's Offaly-Galway Leinster hurling semi-final replay in Portlaoise carries an extra charge of €1 when booked through the Ticketmaster website. Adult terrace tickets for the same game, which are priced at €15, carry a service charge of €2 each.

It means that a package for two adults and four children's tickets with a face value of €42 costs €50 if booked through Ticketmaster. That's an overall service charge of more than 19pc for six tickets.

Children's tickets priced at €5 for Sunday's Galway-Sligo Connacht football semi-final and the Dublin-Meath/Louth-Westmeath Leinster double-header in Croke Park carry a €1 service charge. The more expensive adult tickets are subject to a €2.95 service charge.

Asked to comment on how they could justify adding €1 extra on a €3 ticket, Ticketmaster issued a brief email.

"This is the minimum service charge that Ticketmaster has. No matter what the cost of a ticket, the costs associated with printing/packing/dispatching/customer service of tickets remain the same and this is what is covered by the service charge," it said.

That's unlikely to appease the public, who will find it difficult to understand how a €3 ticket costs €4 when booked on the internet.

"It's crazy. I went on the web to book two adult and two children's tickets for the Galway-Offaly game and was stunned to see that instead of costing €36, I was going to be hit for €42. How can it cost €6 to process? It's a pure rip-off by Ticketmaster," said one supporter who contacted the Irish Independent.

Internet booking for GAA games has increased in recent times and is seen as a popular means of making tickets readily available to people who are not attached to GAA clubs but who like to have their places booked in advance of match days.

However, with charges reaching as high as 33.3pc, there is likely to be a backlash against web bookings.

Irish Independent

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