The pitfall of buying a concert ticket from a third-party vendor
With the average cost to see an artist live in concert hovering around $100, you want to be careful where you buy concert tickets online, Utahn Carol Madsen learned. (Gary Glaser, Shutterstock)
Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes
ROOSEVELT — For many music fans, deciding what concert to see is not nearly as difficult as deciding where to buy their seats. With the average ticket cost to see an artist live in concert hovering around $100, according to Statista, you want to be careful where you buy concert tickets online. It is something one Utah music lover learned the hard way.
Dan + Shay are a pop duo that Carol Madsen and her daughter could not wait to see in concert. She bought tickets from ticket reseller Vivid Seats way back in March 2020, but then COVID sidelined the concert until this past October.
Only after the two-and-a-half-hour drive from Roosevelt, checking into a downtown hotel and walking to Vivint Arena did they learn their tickets were no good.
“Having scanned my tickets, they scanned up red, saying they were invalid,” Madsen said. “And he sent me to the ticket counter, where the lady told me that my tickets were no good.”
Madsen said the arena personnel told her it appeared the tickets she bought were issued to someone else.
Standing in the arena and desperate to get in, she contacted Vivid Seats, but did not get help.
“She wasn’t really giving me any answers and the time was ticking by,” Madsen recalled. “I was on the chat with her for 45 minutes.”
No answers. No replacement tickets. No refund.
Madsen drove home disappointed, and when she got there, she reached out to the KSL Investigators.
We began digging.
We found that Vivid Seats brags that what happened to Madsen shouldn’t happen with Vivid Seats. Right there on its website, it promises a 100% buyer guarantee and tickets will be valid and authentic.
So, this time, we reached out to the ticket broker on her behalf. We did not get a response, but perhaps someone got the message because, within one day, Madsen said she heard from the company. They ended up issuing her a full refund for the worthless tickets – better than nothing, but of course, way too late for the show.
“My first thought was, ‘Oh, this is just my luck,'” Madsen said about the experience. “But then I was like, this isn’t fair. How can they do this? How can they sell tickets that have already been sold?”
The Better Business Bureau says buying from the venue directly is the best way to ensure you are getting a valid ticket.
Vivid Seats is not one of them.