Sir Elton John: ‘Don’t pay over the odds to see me live’

Speaking ahead of his first gig in Edinburgh for over a decade, Sir Elton John has branded secondary ticket sites “disgraceful” for selling tickets to his gigs at inflated prices – and is urging fans not to pay over the odds to see him live.

“I’d rather have empty seats,” said the 68-year-old superstar after discovering that tickets for his 2016 UK tour – which includes a show at Meadowbank Stadium on 25 June – are being sold for up to five times face value on some sites, even though the shows have yet to sell out.

“I think it’s extortionate and I think it’s disgraceful,” he added, joining a growing campaign against ticket resale. “The fact they’re willing to pay that [amount] is fantastic. But I’d rather they’d save their money and not come.”

Coldplay recently signed an open letter to the government calling for action over the issue.

They said fans were being “ripped off by touts” and warned of “industrial-scale abuse and insider exploitation” in the ticketing market.

Earlier this week, it was reported that Mumford & Sons have persuaded the UK government to extend the deadline for people submitting evidence of bad secondary ticketing experiences.

The deadline was originally November 20, but it been extended until December 18.

In a letter published on the band’s Facebook page, Mumford & Sons urged fans to send evidence to MPs who are looking at the issue.

The review, led by Professor Michael Waterson, is looking at recent changes to the Consumer Rights Act 2015.

One of its aims is to see how effective those changes have been.

“We personally went in to the UK’s Department of Culture, Music and Sport last Thursday morning,” Mumford & Sons wrote on Facebook. “We voiced our concerns, and we’ve been welcomed to give them more evidence of these bad practices, which we will do.

“In the meantime if any of you has a bad story to tell about buying tickets via Secondary Ticketing sites, the Review would welcome your feedback.”

Tickets for Sir Elton’s Edinburgh gig, which will be fully reserved seating, are on sale now.

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