There are so many credible-looking websites set up for the express purpose of making a lot of money for their owner that we only ever advise our readers to purchase from primary ticket sites. These are all listed on our 'Green List'
Quick guide - what to look out for and warning signs
Secondary ticket sellers are rife out there, not all are scams but all are in it to make as much money as they can squeeze out of you, one thing most have in common is that they will generally charge you way over face value, this is always a warning sign that you're using a secondary ticket outlet. We never advise that you buy from an unauthorised ticket outlet.
A huge problem for ticket buyers is the length of time it takes for scam sites to come to attention, this gap helps provide huge sums of money to the fraudsters comfortably and with little risk; it can take months for them to come to light which gives them time to disappear. The sites are closed and the fraudsters have got away with your money, a ticket scam isn't officially recognised as a ticket scam until you've been scammed over tickets, missed your gig and lost your money. Of course you can get your money back if you’ve paid by credit card but ultimately who picks up the bill for these refunds?
Dodgy ticket sites are designed to work over the long term; because of this the impact often isn’t clear for a long time. It's a clever, insidious, long and slow means of defrauding the public; it often works well netting millions in revenue for the fraudsters.
Initially, in order to gain trust the site may well deliver the tickets it sells, this is an effective way to build confidence but this phase doesn't last and after a few months things change as fewer tickets are delivered, however, don't be fooled, the final stage is set and after a few months no tickets will be delivered.
The ability to do this is helped by the fact that with so many gigs selling tickets well in advance of the gig, not sending out tickets until just before the gig and few offering a proper refund system the potential for scams is virtually endless.
Until the authorities recognise, acknowledge and act on the scandal that many prefer to keep hidden, it's up to all of us to be 'ticket aware' and put in place a few checks and balances that can help minimise the chances of joining the ever growing throng of ticket buyers who have lost out to these scams.
Once again we must re-state that we only recommend buying from primary ticket outlets, not all secondary sites are scams by any means but the secondary market is where the scammers are able to hide so effectively.
If you do decide that you want to purchase from the secondary market this is what you need to look out for:
Do be aware that authorised agents will always make available the ticket Terms and Conditions applicable to the sale and make the transaction as transparent as possible. This protects both the buyer and the agent and offers the customer legal protection. You will not be afforded the same protection if you buy from an unauthorised site.
If you see tickets advertised anywhere other than official outlets there is a strong chance of getting ripped off in one way or another. Tickets are actually nontransferable,which means that once purchased you can’t sell them on to others, if you do buy from an unauthorised source you stand a chance of being refused entry as the seller must have obtained them elsewhere. Many of the big festivals have ticket operations in place at the site, this means that if you are caught with a fake ticket you won't get into the festival, you may have paid a lot of money for your ticket, travel, accommodation but you will not get in if your ticket is found to be fake.
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