About 200 fans were turned away from an Elton John last night after buying dodgy tickets from Viagogo, sparking an investigation by the consumer watchdog.
About 200 fans were turned away from an Elton John last night after buying dodgy tickets from Viagogo, sparking an investigation by the consumer watchdog.

Hundreds of Elton fans turned away over dodgy tickets

About 200 fans were turned away from Elton John's concert in Adelaide on Wednesday night after they bought fake tickets from scalping site Viagogo.

The state's consumer watchdog are now investigating the matter and have made contact with the controversial ticket resale company.

Adelaide father-of-four Mark Lunn was looking forward to an impromptu night out with his wife, so they decided to buy tickets at the last minute to see Elton John.

Mr Lunn, 42, said his wife did a Google search and clicked on the first result, which was Viagogo.

He was sceptical at first when he saw the cheap $79 tickets were in a stranger's name, but he said the site made assurances it was all legitimate.

Adelaide father Mark Lunn was facing embarrassment after initially being turned away. Picture: Dean Martin
Adelaide father Mark Lunn was facing embarrassment after initially being turned away. Picture: Dean Martin

It was only their second night away from their three-year-old son - they had organised a babysitter and were meeting friends inside the venue, but they were refused entry upon arrival at Botanic Park.

Instead of going home, they purchased standing-room only tickets for $118 each.

"Had it been sold out, we would have been turned away and had to go home," he told The Advertiser.

"That's embarrassing and frustrating when you've got friends and family in the event and you're being turned away and can't be with them."

"We don't go out very often, that's our second time away from our child ... it was a pretty special night for us," he said.

Elton John's Australian promoters Chugg Entertainment confirmed that around 200 people were turned away on Wednesday night.

Consumer Affairs commissioner Dini Soulio said this is a common occurrence with Viagogo and the Swiss-based reseller was offering refunds.

"To attend a concert and have the embarrassment of being refused entry of the door, getting your money back for the ticket is not enough," he told FIVEaa.

Mr Soulio advises affected customers to contact Consumer Affairs directly and then they will demand Viagogo to take action.

 

About 200 fake ticketholders were denied entry to see Rocket Man perform a show packed with non-stop hits and emotion. Picture: Dean Martin
About 200 fake ticketholders were denied entry to see Rocket Man perform a show packed with non-stop hits and emotion. Picture: Dean Martin

Chugg Entertainment said devastated fans can also return to the venue tonight where they will be provided with a letter from Ticketek to send to Viagogo in order to get a refund.

Consumer Affairs told The Advertiser it has a handful of official complaints so far but was assessing the matter and had contacted both Viagogo and Ticketmaster.

Consumer Affairs said people should only purchase tickets through authorised sellers of the event.

Several fans were also turned away at Sir Elton's Perth concerts, but Chugg Entertainment believed it was no where near as many as in Adelaide on Wednesday night.

Google recently came under fire for allowing Viagogo to appear at the top of search results for tickets after a global advertising ban was lifted at the end of November.

 

Viagogo could face millions of dollars in penalties when a Federal Court judgement is handed down next April.
Viagogo could face millions of dollars in penalties when a Federal Court judgement is handed down next April.

Recently, it has been reported Viagogo offered Lizzo tickets originally priced at $89.90 for between $590 and $1723, while tickets worth $99.90 to see former Oasis frontman Liam Gallagher at Sydney's Enmore theatre were being offered for more that $355.

The Swiss-based reseller is facing potential penalties of millions of dollars when the Federal Court hands down its judgement in April next year after successful action by the ACCC.

The site was previously found in court to have made false or misleading representations, in breach of the Australian Consumer Law.

 

Elton John fans head into Botanic Park before the show. Picture: Dean Martin
Elton John fans head into Botanic Park before the show. Picture: Dean Martin