By Lauren Victory

CHICAGO (CBS) — A consumer warning about buying concert tickets, especially during these uncertain times: lots of shows are having date changes due to the pandemic. So what if the new time doesn’t work for you? Perhaps a lot of hassles.

CBS 2 Morning Insider Lauren Victory introduces us to a Northwest Indiana man who turned to us for help.

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Garth Brooks often sells out concerts, just like his 2018 show at historic Notre Dame Stadium. So it’s not a surprise a 2021 show in Cincinnati show set a ticket-selling record for that city.

“I’m a big Garth Brooks fan,” said Bob Meier from Hobart, who was excited to go to that Cincinnati concert.

He paid SeatGeek $371 for two tickets in December for a May concert. Then, a change; the show got rescheduled to a September Saturday. Bob’s a high school referee, and can’t make it.

“I’ve been doing this for over 30 years, and I don’t miss very many games,” he said.

So Bob reached out to SeatGeek on four separate occasions to request a refund.

He spoke with Marian, Raymond, Alex, Adrian, and Mr. King; just to a name a few.

All told him essentially the same thing.

“They basically told me, no, I’m out of luck, and quit bothering them,” Bob said.

The answer might just lie in the dictionary.

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“They’re playing games with the wording. I say they canceled it, they say they postponed it. I feel they canceled it on the date that I could make it,” Bob said.

After CBS 2 got involved, all of a sudden a change of tune from SeatGeek. The situation was escalated, and suddenly an offer of a full refund.

That’s music to Bob’s ears.

So why did SeatGeek refuse a refund several times and then flip flop when we got involved?

We never got a real clear answer, other than suggesting that all those customer service reps made a mistake and that COVID is causing confusion for them.

In a statement, a SeatGeek spokesperson said:

SeatGeek’s policy around refunds is as follows:

  • For cancelled events customers have a choice of a refund or credit.
  • For postponed events we try to match the policy of the box office, which typically means that the customer has the opportunity for a refund within a certain window of time if they return the tickets. Otherwise the tickets are valid for the rescheduled date. 

Obviously there are tens of thousands of impacted events across the country we are managing, and events like this one that have been postponed multiple times, so each case ends up being fairly unique.

For a rescheduled event we do our best to mirror the box office, which typically means offering a refund within 30 days of reschedule.

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Also, keep in mind that you often have better options for refunds in cases like this when you buy tickets directly from the box office or Ticketmaster.

Lauren Victory