David McKay, Co-founder & CEO of Seated
*TL;DR - We guarantee that everyone who requests a refund will get a response within 60 days.*
My co-founder, John, and I started Seated 3 years ago because we wanted to bring fans closer to the artists they love. We were fed up with poor ticketing experiences with waiting rooms, sold out messages, and scalpers getting all the tickets. We knew we could build a better experience for artists and fans.
Unfortunately, this recent overload of cancelled and postponed shows has meant that some fans haven’t had the customer experience they would have expected from Seated.
Since we’ve always been about transparency, I personally wanted to provide some additional context into our refund process.
*What’s the refund policy?*
For cancelled shows, your refund will be automatically approved within 60 days of being notified of the cancellation. Learn more.
For rescheduled shows, your tickets will automatically remain valid for the new date. If you can no longer attend, then you'll have 30 days to request a refund after being notified about the newly rescheduled date. You'll get a response to your refund request within 60 days. Learn more.
*Why 60 days? What's the hold up?*
*1) The volume of refunds.* We are processing tens of thousands of refunds for over 1,500 events. We’re a small operations team of 5 people (Max, Katya, Christine, Danna, and Phoebe) and we didn’t have the software already in place to process refunds in bulk. This means that the team is working hard to respond to each fan one-by-one - while also coordinating details for each rescheduled show with venues, promoters, and the artist teams.
*2) The flow of cash.* Once the artist’s presale has ended, Seated pays out the venue for the tickets you purchased. This means that we’ve had to invoice hundreds of venues and promoters and wait for them to return the money back to us. We’re giving each venue 30 days to pay us back. Once we receive the money back, we’re able to start approving the refunds for that show. Don’t worry, even if we don’t receive the funds back from the venue in a timely manner, we’re still committing to responding to each refund request within 60 days.
*3) The software for our operations team.* Over the next few weeks, we’re focusing on building refund software that makes things easier for fans, artists, and our team. If your refund gets approved after May 12th, then you’ll likely experience a new refund flow that will allow you to choose a cash refund OR exchange your refund for merchandise, live streams, ticket credit, or a charity donation. We’re also making it easier for our operations team to refund entire shows in bulk, rather than processing each order one-by-one.
*4) The refund policies are set by the venue, not by Seated.* For a very small number of rescheduled shows (less than 4%), the venues are not allowing refunds. This means that if we choose to refund fans, Seated will be responsible for the full cost of the ticket. While we understand that venues are also struggling at this time, we're working with the artists to fight for the fan in these scenarios. Don't worry, if the venue still refuses to reimburse us for refunded tickets, then we're going to work with the artist to come up with other options. You'll hear from us within 60 days regardless.
On a separate note, these cancellations have been really hard on our business. We're going to take a big financial loss as a company, just in order to do what's right for the fan.
We've always put the fan first and we're going to keep doing that. Our mantra has always been "What's right for the fan IS what's right for our business." We are going to stand by that.
Side note: Our team is working really hard to respond to every customer support request. If you have questions for me personally, then just put @David in the subject line and I'll respond to you directly.