CHICAGO, IL – June 11, 2013 – The Better Business Bureau serving Chicago and Northern Illinois (BBB) alerts fans purchasing tickets to the upcoming Blackhawks Stanley Cup playoff series to be cautious when buying tickets online.
According to StubHub.com the secondary–ticket market is a $10 billion dollar a year industry, which includes professional brokers, speculators and season ticket holders. Because many of these sellers are not licensed or bonded, and are often found on unregulated online auctions, online classifieds and bulletin boards using person to person sales, sports fans need to be more skeptical and on the alert.
“Fans need to do detailed research before spending large sums of money on NHL Stanley Cup playoff tickets,” said Steve J. Bernas, president & CEO of the Better Business Bureau serving Chicago and Northern Illinois. “Sports fans are often desperate to get tickets to the games which can lead them in the wrong direction when purchasing tickets. The most common way sports fans are getting scammed online is by either paying for counterfeit tickets or tickets that never arrive.”
There have been 121 complaints filed against ticket sales companies during this 12 month period. Consumer inquiries are up 45% - 31159 for this 12 month period compared to 21345 for the previous 12 months.
If you are considering buying tickets on the secondary market, the Better Business Bureau offers the following tips to help ensure a successful transaction:
· Check to make sure the broker is licensed as required in the state of Illinois.
· In case the tickets may be counterfeit, avoid paying cash for tickets in person from a stranger.
· Never wire funds for payment.
· Deal only with brokers that provide clear details concerning the terms of the transaction. For instance, make sure you know up-front the amount of the surcharge for each purchase; whether the tickets are guaranteed; how they will be sent to you and the time frame for delivery; and the broker’s refund, rescheduling and cancellation policies.
· Check if the ticket broker is a member of the National Association of Ticket Brokers (NATB) and review their rating with the BBB at www.bbb.org
· Visit several websites to compare prices and ticket availability for the event you’re interested in attending.
· Verify the location of the seats on a seating chart provided by the venue to avoid purchasing non-existent seats or seats with obstructed views.
· Pay with a credit card or another secure form of payment so you can dispute the charge with your credit card issuer or bank.
For more information on finding ticket brokers you can trust, visit www.bbb.org
As a private, non-profit organization, the purpose of the Better Business Bureau is to promote an ethical marketplace. BBBs help resolve buyer/seller complaints by means of conciliation, mediation and arbitration. BBBs also review advertising claims, online business practices and charitable organizations. BBBs develop and issue reports on businesses and nonprofit organizations and encourage people to check out a company or charity before making a purchase or donation.