Don't get scammed with fake NCAA Tournament tickets

Published: Mar. 18, 2019 at 12:56 PM EDT
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Both Spartan and Wolverine fans are figuring out how they'll make the trek down to Des Moines for the kick off of the NCAA Tournament. But before buying any tickets, the Better Business Bureau of Western Michigan warns that scammers love to target these games, and victims often don't realize they've been cheated until they get to the gate.

“Large sporting events like the NCAA tournament are a prime target for ticket scammers” says Phil Catlett, President of the Better Business Bureau serving Western Michigan. “Fans really need to use caution when they purchase tickets, because scammers are getting better and better at making fake tickets. Often you don’t realize you have been cheated until you get to the gate.”

So how do you stay safe? The BBB says to stick to the official ticket vendor, which is

“The safest way to get tickets is to go through the NCAA’s official ticket exchange” says Catlett. “By going to the source you are assured the tickets you buy are legitimate and you will have a seat at tipoff.”

But if you're going to buy tickets elsewhere, do your research. Make sure the ticket broker you're using is a trusted website or vendor with a good track record.

Also, use a credit card. Credit cards give you some recourse if the tickets turn out to be fake.

And finally, beware of big discounts. Tickets to March Madness can be expensive. While everyone likes a great deal, cheap tickets can be a big sign that they're not real or not exactly as advertised.