The summer of 2022 has been big for concerts. With serious cases of COVID-19 in decline, arenas are filling up as music artists, largely dormant for two years, are touring again.
Concert tickets these days aren’t cheap, but music fans who have run into the Ticketmaster imposter scam have paid even more – sometimes not getting tickets at all.
Recent reports to the Better Business Bureau (BBB) suggest scammers are profiting by pretending to represent popular ticket seller Ticketmaster. Some have gone to great lengths, even producing look-alike Ticketmaster websites that show up in search engine results.
According to the BBB, there are several versions of this scam. Some victims have reported that they received tickets with someone else’s name on them.
After paying, some say they never received any tickets at all. In other cases, the purchaser received the tickets, but the imposter site charged a much higher rate than advertised.
Upon closer inspection, consumers discover they were not on the Ticketmaster site at all, but one that had a similar name and was almost identical to Ticketmaster. Many consumers reported that when they called the customer service number, there was no answer. When someone did answer, some victims said they got no help.
“They sent me two tickets with someone else's name on them, and they also charged me three times the amount [of] the ticket price,” one victim reported. “I have no way to get a refund and no customer service to contact, except by email, because they do not answer their phone.”
How to avoid these scams
The safest way to purchase concert tickets is to buy them from the venue where the event is being staged. If the event is at a local arena, go to the arena’s website.
Using a search engine as a way to find a place to purchase concert tickets is risky. Many of these look-alike sites purchase ads to show up near the top of the search results. If you want to buy your tickets from Ticketmaster, make sure you are on the real Ticketmaster site, which has the URL www.ticketmaster.com.
If you purchase from a third-party company, make sure they are a reputable ticket vendor or reseller, not someone who was lucky enough to get good seats at the list price but marked them up four times their face value.
When buying concert tickets, or making any online purchase, it’s a good idea to use a credit card. You can dispute fraudulent charges and have a better chance of getting your money back.