Ticket scammers: Your days are numbered

Ticket scammers: Your days are numbered

Fuckin’ ticket resale scams. Sadly, too many of us have been victims.

As anyone in Sydney who has hunted for a ticket to a sold out event knows, you can never be sure if the ticket seller is actually legit, or a scammer who will disappear with your money leaving you ticketless.

You usually have to pay a lot more than face value and if you do receive a ticket after parting with your hard-earned cash, the anxious wait begins to find out if it’s a fake ticket or if it’s been sold to a bunch of other people. You’ll only find out the answer when you get to the event, when it may be too late. Fun times.

Trying to sell tickets when you can't make an event is just as tricky - you either take the risk of payments online with credit cards that could be stolen, or go through the hassle of meeting the buyer in person.

No promoter wants people being ripped off for tickets to one of their events, or to lose out on valuable ticket income to these fraudsters either. Local party pundits Deeper Than House recently posted in one of their events warning ravers multiple people were trying to sell fake tickets and reminded them to avoid purchasing tickets from non-official sources.

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We posted recently to see how big a problem ticket resale scams are here in Sydney and got a surprisingly large number of messages to our inbox. The story of one punter stood out for us, so we contacted them for more info...

Maggie was on the hunt for a ticket to a well known electronic music festival in New South Wales, which happened to be sold out. She thought she was in luck when someone posted in the facebook event saying they could no longer make it and they were even willing to part with it for less than they paid. Result, or so she thought.

After a short facebook exchange to try and suss them out, Maggie transferred roughly $300 to the seller’s account. That was the last she heard of them - no ticket, no reply, fake profile deleted.

“I was devastated, I actually wanted to cry. I couldn’t believe it had happened, so gutted“ she said. “$300 is a lot of money, I contacted the bank and PayPal to try and cancel the transaction but they said they would have to investigate. I was determined to go to the festival, so I had to buy another ticket (which I couldn’t really afford) from someone else who I met in person”.

Fortunately, the bank was able to cancel the transaction and Maggie got her money back, but being scammed for $300, not knowing if she would ever get it back and having to fork out another $300 for a new ticket was an experience she would have much rather avoided.

At Rave Reviewz we aim to support Sydney’s electronic music scene and help it thrive. Ticket scammers are doing the exact opposite of that, so we were glad when TicketSwap approached us to help them introduce their secure ticket resale platform in Sydney. Those of you who have raved in Europe where TicketSwap is used far and wide will know how easy and safe it is to use.

Can’t make a gig anymore? Stick your ticket on the site for a maximum of 10% more than face value and someone will snap it up. Looking for a ticket to a sold out event? Jump on the site, do a quick search and buy a reasonably-priced ticket with peace of mind that it is fully legit. Simple.

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We asked Australian head of operations Twan for the full lowdown...

"TicketSwap began out of need. Ticket reselling and scalping on prices has long been an open door for criminals to scam fans. The birth of our platform was all about the fans - to create a safe place where you could go to buy or sell an electronic ticket, knowing that your money was safe, and that the tickets you’d receive would work. Six years later, we are active in over 20 countries around the world, with 4 million happy fans who use TicketSwap.”

So how do we get the ball rolling and drive these ticket scammers out of town then?

“We’re signing up lots of event organisers as we speak. Fans can sign up to our website and start using the service straight away too. For promoters, we also have our Secure Swap initiative, which makes the process of reselling and buying tickets even smoother and safer.”

Sounds good to us. TicketSwap will make life easier for punters and promoters, which will in turn help Sydney’s electronic music scene grow and flourish. Now that, is music to our ears.

Sign up on TicketSwap here.

Photos: Charlie Mitchell