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I have tickets to a now cancelled event: What can I do?

By Grace Ormsby · March 18 2020
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egg

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I have tickets to a now cancelled event: What can I do?

By Grace Ormsby
March 18 2020
Reading:
egg
cancelled event

I have tickets to a now cancelled event: What can I do?

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By Grace Ormsby · March 18 2020
Reading:
egg
cancelled event

The consumer watchdog has provided some helpful advice for Australians hoping for refunds as mass event cancellations occur as a result of COVID-19 concerns.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has released a handy guide on the latest information consumer rights surrounding event cancellations.

It comes as large-scale sporting events such as the AFL and NRL close their doors to spectators despite ticket sales having already taken place, the cancellation of remaining games in the NBL grand final series, the news that regional music festival Groovin The Moo will not be going ahead for 2020, and the postponement of Byron Bay’s Splendour in the Grass to later in the year, just to name a few disruptions. 

The consumer information comes as Prime Minister Scott Morrison updated advice this morning (18 March) on the size of events allowed to be held.

Bans now prevent Australians from organising or attending non-essential indoor gatherings of 100 people or more, while groups of 500 people and above are outlawed where they are scheduled outside.

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In addition, a number of smaller events have been cancelled by organisers out of concern for future uncertainty and virus containment reasons.

So, am I entitled to a refund if I have bought tickets for an event that has since been cancelled?

The ACCC has the following advice:

- Where an event is cancelled, the ACCC expects consumers to be able to receive a refund or remedy such as a credit note or voucher “in most circumstances”.
- However, if the event has been cancelled due to government restrictions, your rights under the consumer guarantee can be impacted.
- You may be entitled to a refund under the terms and conditions of your ticket.

The ACCC has advised contacting the business directly to request a refund or other remedy such as a credit note or voucher.

nestegg notes a number of the larger events and businesses that have been impacted are currently being inundated with queries from concerned persons. Information about refund and remedy processes is often able to be found on relevant websites.

Given the exceptional circumstances, the ACCC has indicated that it is encouraging all businesses to treat consumers fairly.

The event I was supposed to attend has been cancelled, am I also entitled to compensation for travel or accommodation expenses?

In this case, the ACCC has recommended the following:

- First, approach your travel or accommodation provider to see if they would be prepared to offer you a replacement service, refund or voucher.
- Check your cover under any travel insurance policy you may have taken out.

While you may be entitled to compensation under Australian Consumer Law, the consumer watchdog has outlined it will depend on the specific circumstances.

According to the ACCC, this is unlikely to be the case where the event is cancelled due to government restrictions.

I have tickets to an event that hasn’t been cancelled, but I don’t want to attend due to coronavirus concerns. Can I be refunded in this case?

In this circumstance, the ACCC has advised the following:

- Generally, anyone who does not wish to attend a paid-for event due to COVID-19 concerns, this may be treated as a “change of mind”.
- You can contact the event organiser to see if you are entitled to a remedy – maybe a full or partial refund, credit note or voucher.
- For anyone who has a health condition that may place them at higher risk, the ACCC advises contacting the event organiser for a refund or a voucher for use at a later date.

Again, the ACCC has said it is urging all Australian businesses to treat consumers fairly at this time.

I have tickets to a now cancelled event: What can I do?
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About the author

Grace is a journalist on Momentum Media's nestegg. She enjoys being able to provide easy to digest information and practical tips for Australians with regard to their wealth, as well as having a platform on which to engage leading experts and commentators and leverage their insight.

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About the author

Grace is a journalist on Momentum Media's nestegg. She enjoys being able to provide easy to digest information and practical tips for Australians with regard to their wealth, as well as having a platform on which to engage leading experts and commentators and leverage their insight.

Join The Nest Egg community

We Translate Complicated Financial Jargon Into Easy-To-Understand Information For Australians

Your email address will be shared with nestegg and subject to our Privacy Policy

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