How to get a refund for cancelled events

Citizens Advice Havering is launching a new service to help those who need to apply for Universal Cr

Citizens Advice Havering is launching a new service to help those who need to apply for Universal Credit. Picture: PA - Credit: PA Archive/Press Association Ima

Citizens Advice Havering with some tips on if you have a right to a refund for cancelled events amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.


I’ve got tickets to an event soon, but given the recent government announcements on delays to the rules relaxing, I don’t think it can go ahead. The organiser hasn’t reached out yet to explain the next steps. What can I do?


Ticket holders who change their mind about going to see an event, like a concert that is still going ahead, have no legal right to a refund.

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If, however, the event is cancelled, your refund rights will depend on how you bought the ticket. Email the organiser or check their website and social media profiles to see if there’s an update about the event.

If you bought your ticket from an official seller and the organiser cancels, moves, reschedules or makes the event behind closed doors, you should get a refund.

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This is the case even if it is cancelled due to a government ban on large events. The official seller is the best person to ask about how to get a refund.

Leicester Square theatre tickets shop in Leicester Square, London.

Lots of events and shows have been cancelled due to Covid lockdown - Credit: PA Images

If you’re having no luck getting a refund, check to see if the seller is a member of the Society of Ticket Agents and Retailers (STAR).

If they are, you can use STAR’s complaints procedure at by completing the alternative dispute resolution (ADR) form. STAR members should receive a refund at face value if the event is cancelled and the organiser has agreed to refunds.

If you bought your ticket from a ticket-reselling website, refunds will depend on the site's terms and conditions.

If you bought from a private seller and the event is cancelled or rescheduled, then it is unlikely you will be able to recover your money. We still recommend you contact the seller.

If you're due to go to an event, keep checking the information from the official seller or organiser to ensure you're up to date.

Unfortunately, Citizens Advice has found that in these situations scammers prey on those who are affected.

If your event is cancelled and people or companies offer their services to try to recover money on your behalf, make sure that you're looking out for the signs of a potential scam.

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