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Supacase's avatar

Do you think this method of sale is misleading?

Asked by Supacase (14563points) July 8th, 2011

An online ticket seller offers the option allowing them to find the “Best Available” seats. I used this option and purchased what I believed were the best available seats only to find out (by personnel at the location of the event) that there are several significantly better seats available and that the ones I purchased are not even considered particularly good.

The customer service person with the ticket agency told me “Best Available” really means “Closest to Stage” and that if I actually wanted to get good seats I should have made my purchase by phone. They certainly don’t say that on their website.

I knew they have a no refund policy and I have no problem with that. I don’t want my money back; I just want different seats. I want what I was told I bought – the best seats available. Closest ≠ best.

It is currently reviewed by a supervisor. Sure. Do I have any recourse if they continue to deny my request for a seat change? Would disputing the charge through Visa be a viable option? Am I wrong? Should I just let it go?

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14 Answers

YARNLADY's avatar

Learn from your mistakes.

Supacase's avatar

I am curious to know how this was my mistake. I didn’t misread anything. They offered the service of procuring the best tickets and I chose to use it. How should I have known that wasn’t what they sold me?

WasCy's avatar

I was about to fall into this trap while booking an online flight reservation recently. I picked the seats I wanted, and then an option was presented for “Do you want [online booking service] to attempt to find better seats?”

I was about to click it, thinking, “Why not?” when it occurred to me: I picked the seats that I want, regardless of any others that may become available. Why would I want to take ‘pot luck’ over that?

Who knows better than you what is “better” for you?

Aethelflaed's avatar

Yes, although so is the secret knowledge that if you call, many times you don’t have all the fees.

CunningLinguist's avatar

Yes, it is misleading. Yes, you can dispute the charge through Visa. In fact, you can tell Visa to refuse the charge. Since the company has a policy against giving refunds, this will probably work them into a tizzy. Visa has always come through for me, though, and I find that companies are much more open to negotiation when money they thought was in the bank gets taken out of their hands.

dappled_leaves's avatar

I found this out the hard way, too. Very frustrating, and sometimes their customer service people won’t take orders by phone. If you can even get them on the phone.

augustlan's avatar

It sounds pretty damn misleading to me. I’d keep fighting for better seats.

YARNLADY's avatar

@Supacase The mistake I refer to is putting your trust in the wrong place. Some research would probably have averted it.

dappled_leaves's avatar

I don’t know if it is similar in the US, but in Canada there are very few ticketing agencies, and each has a specific territory – i.e. if you want to see a specific show, you can only buy the tickets from one ticketer. There is no competition, so you have to follow the policy of that company if you want the tickets. Research will not help.

Supacase's avatar

@dappled_leaves Yes, this ticketing agency has a contract with the local civic center. They are the only place you can purchase tickets.

@WasCy They don’t have a chart that shows all available seats, or I would have gone that way. I just went back and tried to order tickets by selecting a specific area of the theater and the message “please wait while we reserve the best possible seats for you.” (And the ones they came back with weren’t actually good seats, either.)

I guess I did learn my lesson – call first even if there seems to be no need. I’m still so mad. It is a Christmas gift for my whole family.

john65pennington's avatar

What has calling on the phone vs. online got to do with it?

Communication is communication.

This is like buying your food at a drive-up window and leaving. They know you most likely will not come back, if your order is wrong.

Supacase's avatar

Well, case closed! I called back today and managed to get through to another supervisor who agreed to change our seats. She did say that they normally don’t admit “best = closest” so I imagine that has a good bit to do with the change of heart.

CunningLinguist's avatar

Huzzah! Congrats on your victory!

YARNLADY's avatar

* * * Y A Y * * *

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