October 08, 2015 – As Cubs fans celebrate their team’s win of the first playoff game in 12 years, there’s celebration of another sort going on among scammers who look forward to an opportunity to sell fake tickets and merchandise to unsuspecting consumers, warns the Better Business Bureau.
“Whenever there’s excitement about a special event, like the Cubs post-season appearance, there are counterfeiters who want to take advantage of the opportunity in an illegal way,” explains Steve J. Bernas, president and CEO of the Better Business Bureau serving Chicago and Northern Illinois.
While the excitement of continuing post-season appearances fuel fan enthusiasm, Bernas cautions people to not get taken advantage of by bad guys selling fake tickets and poor quality, unlicensed merchandise.
Here are some suggestions to avoid fake tickets and illegal merchandise:
- Don’t fall for too-good-to-be-true deals. One-time good deals should be red flags to anyone anxious for a ticket. Illegal ticket sellers know excitement about the event too often gets in the way of common sense and smart buying.
- Buy tickets and merchandise from a reputable ticket broker or retailer. There are established businesses that have been selling legitimate tickets for years. Many are Accredited Businesses with the BBB.
- Look for the official hologram and license from the sports league. These are very difficult to fake and an excellent indication of a licensed product.
- If buying merchandise online, buy from licensed sites. Lookout for broken English in the descriptions. This could indicate an overseas company, and these companies are among the principal culprits in producing counterfeit goods.
- Check the bbb.org/chicago for Business Reports on an individual business. Check BBB online reports and Consumer Reviews about various businesses to avoid being cheated.
- Use a credit card if possible, so you can appeal to the card company. Using a credit card allows you to dispute the charge before you pay.
“Cubs fans have waited many years for a post-season opportunity,” says Bernas. “We don’t want their excitement to be spoiled by losing money with fake tickets or poor merchandise.”