Airlines to show 'flexibility' for Stones fans
Rolling Stones fans holding tickets to the postponed concert of the band in Auckland will be able to change flights.
In a statement on social media today, gig organisers Frontier Touring said all Australasian tour dates had been postponed after the death of designer L'Wren Scott, the girlfriend of Stones frontman Mick Jagger.
The band was to perform at Mt Smart Stadium on April 5 as part of its 14 ON FIRE tour.
While fans expressed sympathy and understanding online, many were also concerned about financial losses on tickets, flights and hotel bookings.
Air New Zealand corporate communications executive Kelly Kilgour said: "Air New Zealand has introduced some flexibility on this occasion for customers booked to travel to the Rolling Stones concert – including those on non-flexible fares."
Customers booked to travel to the concert who bought their tickets yesterday or before are being offered the option of deferring their travel to a later date or changing their domestic destination.
For more information people can call the Air New Zealand contact centre on 0800 737 000.
Jetstar communications manager Phil Boeyen said concertgoers with flights booked on Jetstar will be provided with a travel voucher equivalent to the value of their fare.
Affected passengers can phone the Jetstar call centre to arrange for a voucher to be issued.
About 1pm yesterday, after it was announced the Perth show would not go ahead, Ticketek's website crashed – presumably overloaded by people checking for refunds.
For punters wanting refunds, Frontier told Fairfax Media this would be possible, and ticket holders would be informed shortly.
Nearly all 30,000 tickets for the Auckland concert had been sold, with all 5000 $165.55 general admission standing tickets sold out within a day of public release.
The Rolling Stones were last in New Zealand in 2006 for their Bigger Bang tour.
Martin Richardson, of Christchurch, a big fan of the Stones had wanted to take his three sons to the Sydney concert and his daughter to the Auckland event.
He wanted his children, all in their 20s, to see a "real supergroup, a group that's been going for 50 years" before it was too late.
His sons "are very upset at missing a trip to Sydney with dad".
Richardson said Jagger obviously had to take some time off from touring.
Richardson was optimistic the shows would be rescheduled, although he had some concerns about the health of the band members.
"[Drummer] Charlie Watts has already had cancer," he said.
Richardson's loyalty to the Stones goes back a long way. He was at the legendary free concert in Hyde Park in July 1969, along with up to half a million others.
He also took two of his sons to watch the group when it performed at Westpac Stadium in Wellington in 2006.
"They couldn't get over that the stadium was full of old people," he said.
Despite the age of the audience, the boys had loved the performance.
Richardson was pleased with Air New Zealand's response to the concert postponement.
"I'm not asking for a refund," he said.
He was happy the plane tickets could be deferred for rescheduled concert dates.