Ticketmaster parent Live Nation, others agree to show 'junk fees' after Biden pressure - Stockxpo - Grow more with Investors, Traders, Analyst and Research

Ticketmaster parent Live Nation, others agree to show ‘junk fees’ after Biden pressure

(L to R) Tobi Parks, CEO of xBk, US President Joe Biden and Lael Brainard, assistant to the President and director of the National Economic Council participate in an event about protecting consumers, in the East Room of the White House in Washington, DC, on June 15, 2023. 

Andrew Caballero-Reynolds | AFP | Getty Images

WASHINGTON — Several large companies, including Ticketmaster parent Live Nation, are vowing to end surprise “junk fees” following a pressure campaign from the Biden administration.

“Junk fees” are extra costs tacked on at the end of purchases, often for concert tickets, resorts and rentals. President Joe Biden has made ending the practice a priority and invited representatives from Live Nation, Airbnb, SeatGeek and others to meet with him Thursday.

Both Live Nation and SeatGeek agreed in advance of the meeting to commit to show all fees up front for ticket purchases, the White House said. Iowa venue xBk is expected to as well. Airbnb in December began including all fees in the final price after calls from the White House to do so.

“Today’s voluntary actions demonstrate that companies both big and small recognize the importance of providing consumers with honest, up-front all-in pricing, rather than tricking them with surprise fees at the end of checkout,” the White House said in a statement. “It is also just a first step towards addressing junk fees in the economy.”

“This is a win for consumers in my view, and proof that our crackdown on junk fees had real momentum,” Biden said Thursday following the meeting, adding that there is more to do.

Biden first began his campaign against “junk fees” nine months ago and included calls for private companies to do so in his State of the Union address this year. The issue reached a boiling point in November, when customers were faced with exorbitantly high prices for Taylor Swift’s Eras tour tickets.

“President Biden has been working to lower costs for hardworking families by bringing down inflation, capping insulin prices for seniors, and eliminating hidden junk fees,” National Economic Council director Lael Brainard said in a statement. “More companies are heeding the president’s call so that Americans know what they’re paying for up front and can save money as a result.”

Brett Goldberg, co-CEO of TickPick, said in an interview after the meeting he thought it was productive but worried it wouldn’t go far enough. TickPick from its inception has used all-in pricing, meaning no surprise junk fees.

“There’s just so much negative sentiment around ticketing, and even though it doesn’t solve all the problems, the vast majority of what people talk about is the hidden fees,” Goldberg said. “Yes there’s the cost component, but it’s the additional slap in the face when you’re getting ready to pull the trigger on expensive tickets and then it ends up being 20 to 30% more.”


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