Can I get a refund from Ticketmaster for this Alan Parsons concert?

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By Christopher Elliott

Joe Eckre has tickets to see Alan Parsons, but the artist has postponed the event. Can Eckre get a refund?

Question

I purchased a ticket to see Alan Parsons Live Project at Libbey Bowl in Ojai, Calif., in 2021. Just before the event, Ticketmaster notified me that the concert had been postponed but that my ticket was still good. 

I waited patiently but after 18 months and no news from Ticketmaster about a new date for the show, I finally checked the artist’s website and found out that all shows except for one — not mine — had been canceled. 

Ticketmaster is saying that I can’t get a refund for my ticket. In an online chat, a representative said, “After reviewing your order, I see that you purchased your tickets after the event had already been rescheduled. Therefore, the event organizer is not allowing refunds.” 

My Ticketmaster account still reads that my tickets are still good and the date is “to be announced” — but the artist’s website says otherwise. Can you help me get a refund? — Joe Eckre, Canyon Country, Calif.

Answer

Ticketmaster should refund your tickets. In fact, it should refund all tickets to this show. Parsons suffered a “serious” spinal issue last year, and his doctors ordered him to cancel the upcoming tour and undergo surgery, according to his website. As I write this, it isn’t clear when Parsons might return to California to resume the tour. But it isn’t fair to make you wait.

Ticketmaster’s chat transcript referred to the terms of your ticket. The reseller offered you a refund, which you turned down. But it looks like that effectively reset the terms of your ticket, allowing the event organizer to keep your money until it decided to reschedule the concert. (Related: She canceled her credit card. Will she ever see her refund for the BTS concert?)

When your concert is canceled, it’s always best to take a refund. You can always buy a new concert ticket later. But if you take the credit and allow the organizer to keep your money, you may have to wait a while, and a refund may be impossible. (Here’s how to resolve your own consumer issues.)

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Always check the fine print

A brief, polite email to a Ticketmaster executive might have helped move things along. I publish the names, numbers and emails of the Ticketmaster customer service executives on my consumer advocacy site, Elliott.org. I also publish a free guide on how to get a refund from Ticketmaster.

Your case is a reminder to always read your ticket’s terms and check any fine print when you accept a change. It looks as if you had agreed to give the event organizer an indefinite loan with no obligation to repay you. You would have been forced to choose an alternate Alan Parsons concert or lose the money. Ah, the games people play.

I contacted Ticketmaster on your behalf, and it refunded the $71 you had spent on your ticket.

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Christopher Elliott

Christopher Elliott is the founder of Elliott Advocacy, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that empowers consumers to solve their problems and helps those who can't. He's the author of numerous books on consumer advocacy and writes three nationally syndicated columns. He also publishes the Elliott Report, a news site for consumers, and Elliott Confidential, a critically acclaimed newsletter about customer service. If you have a consumer problem you can't solve, contact him directly through his advocacy website. You can also follow him on X, Facebook, and LinkedIn, or sign up for his daily newsletter.

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