Survey reveals fall in extra booking charges for West End theatre tickets

Let It Be, which will return to the West End in February. Photo: Tristram Kenton
Let It Be, which will return to the West End in February. Photo: Tristram Kenton
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The average extra booking fees being charged on West End theatre tickets have nearly halved in the last year.

Additional fees charged after the initial price quoted to customers has fallen from an average of £1.96 in 2012 to £1.12 in 2013. In the commercial sector, the drop is even more stark – with extra fees falling from £2.21 on average in 2012 to £1.06 in 2013.

The drop in extra fees is primarily the result of more ticket agents including booking fees in the initial price of the ticket quoted to customers. There is still, however, a wide range of extra fees being charged. These include transaction fees, per ticket fees and charges for printing out tickets. The largest additional fee charged was for Let It Be at the Savoy Theatre, which charged an extra £5 on a single ticket – a mix of a £2 per ticket charge and a £3 transaction charge when booked through ATG tickets.

Nimax, See Tickets and Delfont Mackintosh now all charge no extra fees after the initial price quoted, with booking fees wrapped up into an overall price presented to customers when they chose their seat. Ticketmaster, ATG Tickets and various independents (including some subsidised venues) are still charging extra fees, normally in the form of transaction charges. These can vary from show to show – for example, ATG Tickets charges no transaction fee for The Lion King at the Lyceum, but a £2.50 booking fee for Trelawny of the Wells at the Donmar Warehouse and £3 for most of its other shows.

The full results of The Stage's annual survey into West End ticket prices is available in this week's print edition of The Stage.

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