CONCERT goers are being charged vastly inflated prices by online sellers for tickets that are still on sale at the box office, Poole’s Lighthouse has warned.

The venue has lodged a complaint after finding tickets advertised on the website Viagogo for up to three times their face value.

The arts centre spotted tickets for singer Wilko Johnson on sale for £107 when they were still available at the venue for £34.25. Tickets to see the hit film Joker with a live orchestra were being offered for £154 instead of £52.25, while comedian Jimmy Carr’s show was on sale at £71 instead of £32.50.

Viagogo, a ticket exchange and re-sale site, has taken all Lighthouse tickets down from its sites following the complaints.

Bournemouth Echo:

Lighthouse deputy chief executive Sara St George was concerned that people Googling a show’s tour dates would find sellers like Viagogo listed above Lighthouse in the search results.

“We’re a charity. We only retain about 10-20 per cent of ticket income,” she said.

“We don’t have the budget where we can basically pay for a big Google ad campaign.

“The message we’re trying to get out is that if there’s an act or performance you want to see, you’ll get a much better price by going to the venue.”

She said Lighthouse had also found some sellers were offering tickets they did not own, because those seats were still available at the box office.

Bournemouth Echo:

Tickets for Viva La Divas on sale through Viagogo

She warned that the venue’s terms and conditions forbid re-selling of tickets for gain and that holders of second hand tickets could find themselves refused admittance.

Lighthouse has lodged a complaint with the Competition and Markets Authority, which last year secured a court order instructing Viagogo to change the way it operates.

The order said Viagogo must display information such as which seat the customer would get and whether there was a risk of being turned away at the venue. It should also prevent customers being misled about the availability and popularity of tickets and make them aware of tickets’ face value.

The CMA has told Lighthouse it will review the information the venue has provided.

A spokeswoman for Viagogo confirmed the listings which Lighthouse complained about had been removed and blocked.