The pandemic continues to cause problems for consumers seeking refunds
A super fan family is super disappointed after the Rolling Stones cancelled their one and only Canadian concert in Vancouver in July.
"I was insanely excited because it was also like on my birthday," said Russell Craig. He was going to turn 16 when the concert was postponed in 2020. This year, when it was announced the No Filter tour would resume, Vancouver was cut.
"I mean, I also really wanted to go," said William, Russell's younger brother.
William plays the drums and Russell rocks out on the electric guitar. They played Brown Sugar for us when we met them and their parents, who are huge fans and have seen the Stones many times before.
"(It’s) just kind of a full-circle moment, being such big fans ourselves, to be able to take our kids with us," said Mona Craig.
She and her husband purchased two different groups of tickets in February 2020 to make sure they could go.
Ed Craig paid about $1,000 on Ticketmaster for four tickets, and Mona went to Ticketsales.com, spending $1,616 for four tickets as well. They planned to invite extended family after scoring the seats.
Both ticket sellers held onto the money after the tour was postponed with plans to honour the tickets once it resumed.
Mona received an email from Ticketsales.com last year stating, "You are still backed by our 100 per cent Buyer's Guarantee that ensures you receive a full refund in the instance that the concert is cancelled."
Ed had no trouble getting his money back after it was made official that Vancouver was being dropped from the tour.
"Within a day or so we got an email saying we'd get our money refunded in full," he said.
It was a different story for Mona dealing with Ticketsales.com.
"I was hung up on five times or I tried to escalate it to a manager and I was hung up or put back into the loop of pre-recorded messages," she explained.
She did receive an email from the company saying, "We're still working with this order to provide you the best compensation."
However, there was no mention of a full refund.
The next day, she received another email saying Ticketsales.com was introducing a new program for its customers, offering 120 per cent credit for the future purchase of tickets.
Mona wanted a full refund, but the clock was ticking on that. The same notice stated: "If you wish to pursue a full refund in lieu of the 120 per cent store credit option, you should contact our customer service team within 7 days."
The onus was on her.
Fed up, she filed a credit card dispute with her bank and – despite it being nearly a year and a half after her purchase – RBC stepped in to help.
"Certainly after RBC had reached out to them and they understood that I was talking to CTV News, I got my refund pretty quick," she said.
Ticketsales.com issued her a full refund.
CTV News reached out to the company to find out why there was so much confusion over the refund.
We were caught in a loop too, sending two emails to two different Ticketsales.com addresses, initiating an online chat, filling out an online contact form, and then calling and being transferred to voicemail. We received no response.
The company has an F rating with the Better Business Bureau in the U.S., where it is located. The reason? There have been 245 complaints over the last three years, with a failure to respond to 74.
Mona says she has never dealt with Ticketsales.com before and probably will not again. If the Rolling Stones ever do make it to Vancouver, the Craig family will be itching to go. Where will they buy their tickets?
"Probably Ticketmaster," she said.
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