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Insider now allows ticket transfers; Every site should allow this

tickets

Ticketing platform Insider.in has introduced a new feature that will let its users transfer their tickets to Insider as well as non Insider users without going through any paperwork. Customers that purchase from the website will have an option to transfer the purchased item to other users via the website.

The option to transfer tickets is visible right next to the purchased item. On clicking this, users are prompted to fill in receiver details including their name, email address and phone number. Post this, a One Time Password is sent to the user to confirm the transaction. Note that users can transfer tickets only once per ticket.

Transferring most tickets is painful

While this is a very useful move by Insider, it makes us wonder why every ticketing company does not do this. Users should ideally be able to transfer unused movie, train, plane tickets etc. The money has been paid: why does the identity of who’s bought it matter? These artificial restrictions are not consumer friendly.

Usually, transferring tickets involves painful processes. Some examples:

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BookMyShow’s policy states that “In a rare case scenario, where the cardholder is absent during the collection of tickets, the person collecting the tickets needs to show the photocopy of the front and reverse side of your card which should be signed by the cardholder along with the confirmation mail/sms.”

Users therefore need to forward their tickets as well as payment details to friends to transfer tickets. Tickets for events and live shows etc., on pretty much any platform, paint a similar picture.

– Train Tickets: For transferring train tickets, users need to first submit an application at least 24 hours before the departure of the train. This transfer too is restricted only between family members or a government employee travelling on duty. To transfer tickets to students, a request has to be made by the head of their educational institution at least 48 hours before departure. For other users, it’s not even possible. Given these tedious measures, it’s often just easier to book a fresh tatkal ticket.

– Air Tickets: As for air tickets, pretty much none of the major airlines allow for ticket transfers. In fact, in case the cardholder is not travelling, passengers need to provide a physical copy of the signed front side of the credit/debit card used to make the payment, along with the cardholder’s proof of identification. If such documents are missing, passengers are likely to be banned from boarding the flight.

MediaNama’s Take

Checking if tickets belong to the user or not is not necessarily common in theatres etc., but if caught, users can end up missing out on what they (or their friends) paid for. Travel tickets on the other hand, are impossible to transfer or very difficult to do. The only exception being bus tickets where most private bus operators don’t care who booked the ticket. And they shouldn’t. Allowing for transfer of tickets will be extremely convenient to most users as missing out on concerts etc. is common and everyone knows that one person who wants to go instead.

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On the other hand there are concerns about security when tickets are transferred without proper procedure. However, by mitigating the process online and reducing paperwork, agencies can at least try to make the task easier. Other issues like hoarding of tickets by agents to transfer them at a higher price later, can be mitigated by actions like limiting the number of tickets a customer can buy.

Image source: Flickr user Joe Clay

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MediaNama’s mission is to help build a digital ecosystem which is open, fair, global and competitive.

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