Just as Turkey blocks Twitter and YouTube, the State of Kate Bush has ordered a block on all online booking ticket agencies. Those now wanting tickets for her first live gigs in 78 years will have to walk to a participating venue and buy them. Just buy them, Tommy Cooper style. There’ll be a price on the ticket, you hand over a matching amount of money, and the shopkeeper gives you the ticket. Done. Enjoy the gig.

If only.

It’s not like that. Not now. But was it ever?

Now, you have to be up at 9.30 in the morning (Ha! Hard luck Peter Stringfellow! No tickets for you!) Up at 9.30 and then there’s a 15 minute window (hopefully Cathy gets her tickets) before they’re all gone.

I joined in the Bush Rush, although it’s not really my kind of thing (I only like Sparks). I did it for my wife. She likes Kate Bush (not so keen on Sparks).

I’m there, 9.30, ready to go! The only tickets that seem to be available cost £9,567. They’re for the hospitality package (which does, admittedly, throw in a “bamboo cone of chocolate & caramel dipped berries”). Oh, and for all my lies, that last bit is true.

To get to the point, I do, within 15 minutes, find two possible tickets for me and Zoe. They’re the only ones I can find and they are in the circle. They are £135 each.

Hmmm. That’s a lot… but, in the long run, we’re only going to die. So what the hell!

Having made a decision it’s a race against time. A clock ticks away onscreen. I have about seven minutes. I have to type in one of those nonsense words that proves I am human. It was something like R1PUoFf. It’s difficult to know; it was all scratchy and slanted like a Tin Machine lyric.

Somewhere in the scheme of things I had 4 minutes, then 3…  and in the mad scrabble to give our summer holiday away I typed and tapped and bought the two dearest tickets I’ve ever bought in my life.

But I’m happy. We want to go and we will have a great night out.

But why did two tickets at £135 each come to a grand total of £303.50?

Ah! “Service and delivery charge- £2.50”. Not bad! Service and delivery for only £2.50.

Oh! And “2 Booking Fee x £10.50”. I wonder what the distinction is between a service charge and a booking fee? And why two booking fees coming to £21 for what is the same booking?

Never mind. I guess this is how things are done these days. And we will have a great night out.

But wait! That still only comes to £293.50.

WHAAAAATTTTTT!!!!! “Missed Event Insurance: £10.00”

What? Seriously, what? I didn’t ask for this!

Well, it seems I did. Eventim’s policy is to automatically include this unless you choose to untick the box. Something I overlooked in my race against the, by then, 2 minute countdown.

I’ve complained and Eventim have pointed me to a webpage where I can print out a form, fill it in, and apply by post to the insurance company for a refund. I shouldn’t have to do this.

Here’s my complaint. it’s not a complaint about ticket prices, or even unseemly booking fees. It’s a complaint about £10. £10 and the way Eventim hoodwink us into buying unwanted insurance policies… for gigs!? Just take a moment to get to grips with this insane proposal: an insurance policy for a gig.

The honest way to do business is to say “tick if you want it” not “untick if you don’t”.

In the scheme of things it is not a lot of money. Probably the cost of a bamboo cone of chocolate & caramel dipped berries. But I’m going to go all Point Blank on this one. All Parker and Porter.

I guess I’d get into trouble if I called Eventim crooks. But it reminds me of the man in the Post Office the other day who when asked for 5 first class stamps by an old lady told her “we sell them in books of six”. She stood her ground and got a strip of 5 from the big book. But it was clear the post office man wanted her to think they were only available in units of 6. And so I will call him immoral, and I will call Eventim immoral.

Not Kate. This, undoubtedly, has nothing to do with her. Me and Zoe are going to have a great night out.

 

 

Advertisements