NEWS

Ticket fees rile world junior hockey fans

12/28/2011 04:53 EST | Updated 02/27/2012 05:12 EST

Fans trying to buy and sell tickets for the World Junior Hockey Championship in Edmonton and Calgary are angry about the extra fees charged on the tournament's official ticket exchange website.

While there is no cost to list tickets on the site, Hockey Canada levies a 15 per cent buyers' fee and takes 10 per cent of the price of each ticket sold.

But the extra fees are just not worth it, according to Jason Miller, who was trying to sell one of his unused tickets outside Rexall Place in Edmonton Wednesday afternoon.

"I'd rather just give them away to some friends," Miller said. "It was easier just to go to Kijiji and just get some contacts that way just to get rid of them, just at face value. It was cheaper to get rid of them at face value than to pay [Hockey Canada] to do it."

Tickets for the tournament were sold in packages, meaning fans had to either sell or give away tickets for the games they could not attend, or let them go unused.

Counterfeit tickets have been a problem in the past, so Hockey Canada set up the online exchange with Ticketmaster so fans knew the tickets they purchased were legitimate

Scott Farley, vice-president of marketing and events with Hockey Canada, said the extra charges help cover the cost of providing the service.

"That's standard industry rate, if you check any other websites that's kind of where it is," Farley said. "There's a lot of back-end costs around that. We did a deal with Ticketmaster. We checked. It's in line with industry standards. We think it's fair."

But Lyle Best, the co-chair of the 2012 World Junior Hockey Championship, concedes the costs could have been made more clear on the website.

"I think we took for granted that people who buy and sell on these types of sites know about administration fees, so what we did this morning was we moved to quickly put that up front, right on the main screen," Best said.

"We probably could have done a better job of explaining that."

People who bought packages were also given the option of giving their unwanted tickets to children. Best said 15,400 tickets have been donated so far.

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