Highly irresponsible for government to allow 545,000 tickets be made available with no regulation – Maurice Quinlivan TD
Sinn Féin’s Maurice Quinlivan TD has criticised the lack of government action on ticket touting and said it was highly irresponsible for the government to allow 545,000 tickets to be made available with absolutely no regulation.
Speaking today the Limerick City TD said;
“On Monday 545,000 tickets will be made available for the Pope’s visit in August. Organisers believe this will be the largest-ever ticketed event in the world, but despite this Ireland still has no laws in place that govern the resale of tickets.
“Although tickets for the Pope’s visit are free, due to the expected demand from at home and abroad, it is likely that ticket touts will take advantage of the absence of regulation and try and resell some tickets at huge prices.
“Organisers are trying to limit this problem by making tickets non-transferable, but when Ed Sheeran tried this at his recent concerts in Ireland, it resulted in some genuine fans being refused admission having bought tickets at inflated prices without knowing they would be cancelled.
“Unfortunately I can see the very same thing happening here, and with the international aspect to this event, tourists will be particularly affected.
“Organisers have also said anybody attempting to sell the free tickets should be reported to Gardaí, but regrettably this will make little difference as these people will be breaking no laws.
“I brought forward a Bill in March 2017, the Sale of Tickets (Sporting and Cultural Events) Bill 2017, that would cap the resale of tickets at 10% of face value, and where the face value was zero, like in this case, my bill would cap the price that could be asked at reasonable postage costs.
“Unfortunately like every other opposition Bill it remains in limbo, waiting for a money message from the Taoiseach, and the government has done nothing themselves to sort this problem.
“Dublin was chosen three years ago to host the World Meeting of Families, so the government has had ample time to prepare legislation to address this particular deficit. Frankly it’s highly irresponsible to leave this area unregulated, especially when such a major world event is taking place here.
“Unfortunately due to this inaction, people will undoubtedly buy tickets at inflated prices only to be refused entry on the day, ruining the occasion for some.
“It’s a real shame nothing has been done in this area, because this problem is completely avoidable.
“Clearly it’s too late to introduce any legislation to protect consumers for this event, but Ireland has given a commitment to UEFA to introduce anti-ticket touting measures for the EURO 2020 games to take place here, so the government need to act on this now.”