Ticket scalping and reselling
Ticket scalpers systematically buy large numbers of sport and entertainment event tickets with the sole aim of reselling them at a high profit above the initial purchase price.
Anti-scalping laws apply to tickets to WA events that are first sold on or after 10 September 2021 and have a resale restriction. A resale restriction is a term or condition on a ticket that limits the circumstances in which the ticket may be resold.
These laws provide fairer access to events in WA by prohibiting anyone from reselling a ticket to a WA event for more than the original price plus 10 per cent.
Advertisements for resale tickets must specify the original cost of the ticket and a resale price that is no more than 10 per cent above the original cost. The advertisement must also include any bay, row or seat number that applies to the ticket.
The use of 'bot' software is also banned. Bots are computer programs that allow ticket scalpers to rapidly buy tickets in large quantities and place them on resale websites at inflated prices.
An event organiser must not cancel a ticket on the basis it was resold, if it was resold in accordance with the laws.
For information about reselling a ticket or buying a ticket from a reseller, see the frequently asked questions (FAQs) below:
Reselling a ticket
Can I resell a ticket to any event?
Resale of tickets to sporting and entertainment events is generally legal in WA. However, the resale of tickets outside some venues may be prohibited. The Public Trading Local Law 2005 prevents the selling of goods or services, including ticket scalping and reselling, in public areas within the City of Perth without a trading permit.
Legislation regarding ticket reselling varies across other Australian states and territories.
What if the terms and conditions say the ticket cannot be resold?
If the ticket is resold in accordance with the new laws, any terms and conditions prohibiting the resale will be void. This means the venue cannot refuse you entry only because of the resale. If you are refused entry for this reason, contact Consumer Protection.
How much can I legally sell my ticket for?
Organisers of sporting and entertainment events authorise ticketing agencies to sell tickets for their events.
From 10 September 2021, for tickets first sold by the authorised ticket seller, it is an offence to resell a ticket for more than its original cost, plus 10 per cent. The original cost includes any booking fee charged on the original purchase. The additional 10 per cent is intended to allow you to recover any other transaction costs resulting from the purchase and resale of the ticket.
I won a free ticket to an event in a competition. Can I resell the ticket if I don’t want to or can’t go?
Yes. The laws do not cover tickets provided on a complimentary basis and you will not commit an offence if you resell them. However, always check the terms and conditions. Resale may not be allowed for that ticket and a buyer may be denied entry by the venue.
How do I calculate the original price if I bought multiple tickets in a single transaction, and paid one booking fee for all the tickets?
To calculate the resale price of one ticket, you should divide the booking fee by the number of tickets you bought and add it to the original cost base of the individual ticket.
What if I want to resell a ticket I bought from a resale site?
The laws continue to apply no matter how many times a ticket is resold between different people.
From 10 September 2021, any person reselling a ticket cannot sell it for an amount that exceeds the original ticket cost plus 10 per cent.
This recognises a ticket may be separated from other documentation showing the transaction costs when it is passed from one person to another. It may be difficult for subsequent purchasers to know the original ticket cost but you can try to find out by looking at comparable tickets through the official ticketing agency, the event promoter or at the venue.
Will I be fined if I resell a ticket for more than 10 per cent above the original cost?
If the ticket is subject to a resale restriction and you sell it for more than 10 per cent above the original price you are breaching the law and may be issued with a $2,000 infringement notice. Offenders may also be prosecuted and could face a maximum fine of $20,000 for individuals and $100,000 for companies.
When there are breaches of the law, Consumer Protection considers its Compliance and Enforcement Policy when deciding what action to take. More information about the enforcement action that may be undertaken is on the ticket reselling page.
Some tickets will not have resale restrictions. For example, events that are not anticipated to be in high demand will generally not have a resale restriction on tickets.
What if the buyer offers me a higher price than the advertised price?
You are breaking the law if you sell your ticket for a higher price than 10 per cent above the original cost. Consumer Protection may issue you with a $2,000 infringement notice. Offenders may also be prosecuted and could face a maximum fine of $20,000 for individuals and $100,000 for companies.
The buyer of your ticket is also at risk as their ticket could be cancelled by the venue.
Buying a ticket
What should I look for in ticket resale advertisements for events in WA?
Advertisements for resale tickets must include the following:
- The original ticket cost
- An asking price that is no more than 10 per cent above the original ticket cost
- Any applicable bay, row or seat number. If there is no seat the advertisement must specify general admission or similar
From 10 September 2021, advertisements that do not meet all the above requirements are banned. If you see any prohibited advertisements, you should report them to the resale site operator by sending them an email. They should then take it down. Some websites have a 'report' function to trigger an investigation into suspicious or non-compliant advertisements. You should also report non-compliant advertisements to Consumer Protection on 1300 304 054 or email.
You can find out the original ticket cost by checking comparable seats with the official ticketing agency or the event promoter. Do your own calculations to make sure you are not being charged more than 10 per cent above the original cost of the ticket.
You should contact Consumer Protection on 1300 304 054 or email if the original cost was not disclosed in the advertisement for the ticket.
How do I report bots?
You should contact the resale site operator in the first instance. If you have evidence bots have been used to purchase tickets please report this to Consumer Protection on 1300 304 054 or email.
What are the rules about ticket packages?
Tickets are sometimes sold as part of a package with additional services such as hotel accommodation, meals or transport. Resellers can seek to disguise the real price of tickets by providing them as part of a package.
Tickets can only be sold as part of a package, such as travel and accommodation, if provided or authorised by the event organiser:
- For authorised packages provided by someone apart from the event organiser, the package must then include a breakdown of the costs per component, before any money is paid
- If the package is provided by the event organiser, this breakdown is not required
Other packages are prohibited under the Ticket Scalping Act 2021. If you buy a ticket in a package that is not authorised by the event organiser, your ticket may not be valid.
I bought a resold ticket with a price that is more than 110 per cent of the original cost. Will my ticket be cancelled?
If your ticket is subject to a resale restriction but is resold in breach of the anti-scalping laws, the event organiser is within their rights to cancel the ticket and refuse your entry at the venue. You could also lose your money.
The venue has no role in the price charged by the reseller. However you could check with the venue to find out if you will be admitted to the event and to verify your ticket is authentic.
I bought resold tickets but they never arrived. Can I get a refund?
Contact the reseller first to confirm they have not made a mistake. You can also contact the ticket resale website's customer complaints section. If you bought tickets with a credit card and you never received them or they were not legitimate, submit a chargeback claim with your card provider as soon as possible.
If the tickets were purchased using PayPal, contact their Resolution Centre and see if there are any protections offered through your PayPal Buyer Protection program or by calling 1800 073 263.
Be aware the original supplier of the tickets (the official ticketing agency or the event organiser) is not legally obliged to give you a refund, as you did not transact directly with them. Your sale contract is with the reseller of the ticket.
Live Performance Australia has ticketing codes of practice which provide more information.
I live outside WA and bought a resold ticket from someone outside WA for an event held in WA. Are they allowed to charge me more than 110 per cent of the original price?
No, not for tickets that are first sold from 10 September 2021. These laws apply to sporting and entertainment events held at venues within WA. It does not matter where the buyer or seller lives. If you are being sold a ticket that includes a resale restriction to a WA sporting or entertainment event for more than 110 per cent of the original ticket price, that is against the law.
I bought a ticket, attended the event and then found out I was charged more than 110 per cent of the original ticket price. Can I get refunded the difference?
No. Consumer Protection does not have the power to order refunds in these circumstances.
You could report the sale to the resale website to alert them to non-compliant advertisements being hosted on their website.
I bought a resold ticket for a legitimate price but the organisers won’t let me into the event. What should I do?
If your ticket has been resold according to the law, the venue cannot cancel your ticket because it has been resold. After verifying the authenticity of the ticket with the organiser or authorised seller, you should contact Consumer Protection on 1300 304 054 or email.
If you bought a fraudulent ticket, ask for a refund from the ticket resale website. You can also report fraudulent or scam ticket sales to Consumer Protection via WA ScamNet
The ticket I bought is for a different seat than advertised. It was a cheaper seat meaning I paid too much.
You should contact the ticket resale website or the reseller.
The event was cancelled. Can I get a refund if I hold a legitimately resold ticket?
Any refunds being offered by official ticketing agencies or event organisers will be paid to the first purchaser of the ticket and not to those with resold tickets. If you bought your ticket from a resale website, check with the resale website to see if you are covered for event cancellations.
If you paid by credit card, submit a chargeback claim with your card provider as soon as possible.
Do the laws apply if I bought a ticket before 10 September 2021 but the event is held after then?
The laws apply to all tickets to WA events first sold from 10 September 2021, if they have a resale restriction. Tickets bought before this date are not affected, no matter when the event is held.
Download a print-ready version of the FAQs
Risks when buying from a reseller
You may not get the same protections when buying tickets from an unauthorised reseller. If you buy from a reseller you might:
- Be turned away at the venue if the ticket is invalid or fake
- Not receive a refund if an event is cancelled
- Not get a new ticket or money back if the date is changed
- Lose your money and the opportunity to attend the event if the tickets are not delivered
Protect yourself and your tickets
Always check all options and see whether tickets are available from the primary ticket seller first. Consumers can reduce the risks associated with buying tickets by:
- Finding out from the event organiser who the authorised sellers are
- Checking WA ScamNet for any relevant scams
- Checking the terms and conditions of the ticket before purchasing
- Not giving out too many personal details online, including birthdates
- Only using secure payment methods – consider using a credit card which usually has added protections of its own
- Always saving all transaction records
Live Performance Australia also has a fact sheet on buying tickets safely and securely [PDF 164KB] .
The Australian Consumer Law (ACL) requires a seller to:
- Provide tickets which are fit for purpose and match their description
- Advertise the full price and include all fees, plus the minimum postage costs, if known by the seller at the time
- Provide a receipt
- Not mislead in any way
Ticket reselling for businesses
More business-focussed information is on our ticket reselling page.
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