COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost is warning football fans to be cautious if purchasing tickets for Super Bowl LVI. Yost’s warning comes as Ohio is represented in the big game for the first time in 33 years.
Tickets through reputable sellers such as Ticketmaster start at $5,200. The price for a Super Bowl ticket far exceeds the general face value for Bengals home games.
“If someone is claiming to get you in the stadium for significantly less, you should challenge that call,” Yost said. “Con artists are out there, and fake tickets will always exist. Although no scamming has been reported to my office, Ohioans should be on the defensive when looking at Super Bowl tickets.”
Yost offered the following tips:
Be skeptical of offers that are too good to be true. Sellers on Craigslist or other online marketplaces may offer tickets at face value (or below) for events that are sold out or in high demand, but these offers may be scams. Some may offer “Hail Mary” explanations for why they need to sell tickets quickly, falsely claiming, for example, that they have a medical emergency or an overseas military assignment.
Be careful dealing with individual third-party sellers. To protect yourself, deal with reputable businesses instead of third-party individuals who are not associated with an event. Beware of websites that might be impersonating the NFL logo or sponsors’ logos. Before providing any payment or personal information, research a seller’s reputation, especially that of an individual seller. Search the seller’s name, username, email address, phone number and other details for information. Even if you find no negative information, don’t assume that the seller is trustworthy. Some con artists change names regularly.
Be wary of sellers who call an audible on specific forms of payment. Con artists often request payment methods that are difficult to trace or recover, such as wire transfers, cash or gift cards. If you’re using a mobile wallet or peer-to-peer payment service such as Venmo or Zelle, be sure that you understand the protections the service does (or does not) provide before making a transaction.
Don’t suffer a loss on the play. Consider paying with a credit card. If a problem arises, you generally have greater protections and the ability to dispute charges on a credit card, unlike some other payment methods.
The Better Business Bureau also has tips on its website to avoid being scammed when purchasing tickets.
The National Association of Ticket Brokers said that as ticketing transitions to becoming all digital, scammers are adapting.
“When it is worthwhile, there will be people who try to do that, which is why I go back, whether you are dealing with digital or any ticket to make sure you buy from someone you will have some recourse with,” said Gary Adler, the executive director and counsel for the NATB. “The members of our association are professional resellers. They are in the business of doing things right.”
Adler recommended using only reputable ticket agents.
“Always go back to making sure you do your homework and make sure you know who you are buying from,” Adler said.