Oh, that terrible moment when you show up for the much-anticipated concert/sporting event and the ticket taker scans your ticket and… nothing. It’s a fake and you’re now poorer and without a ticket. If you’ve ever been tricked into buying a counterfeit ticket, there are ways you can minimize the risk of going through that humiliating moment.
Jeff Bercovici of Forbes.com admits that he fell prey to ticket scammers quite recently, as he and a friend find out the tickets they’d purchased on Craiglist for the New York Giants vs.Green Bay Packers game weren’t the real deal. They found that out when they’d already arrived to the stadium for the game, losing out on the fun and $175 each.
Bercovici knows it wasn’t the smartest move, but since all of us have those regrettable times when our excitement overrules sensibility, there are a few key ways to avoid scams.
Bill Patterson, vice president of global licensing for OpSec, which does work related to anti-counterfeiting efforts, says to just stay away from tickets on Craiglist, period.
“One of the first things we tell people is don’t buy your tickets off Craigslist,” he said. “I buy all sorts of stuff off Craigslist. I would not buy tickets there.”
Instead, stick to the official ticket exchanges run by sports leagues and teams, set up to allow fans to trade and sell unwanted tickets, or go with sites like StubHub.
A few other tips:
‚Ä¢ Be skeptical — if it’s less than face value, that’s a clear sign it’s probably a fake. Don’t fall for any excuses as to why the ticket is being offered on the cheap.
‚Ä¢ Give it a good once-over: Keep an eye out for cheap, fake paper stock, printing smudges or even scissor marks. Even if it looks authentic, or has a bar code, that doesn’t mean it’s real. Anyone with a printer and a little skill can make a good facsimile.
‚Ä¢ And finally, says Bercovici –¬†don’t trust anyone named Troy Wellington. “That’s like the fake name the cheesy guy in a sitcom would use to pick up women he never wants to see again.
How Not to Get Scammed on Fake NFL Tickets (Like I Did) [Forbes]