Don’t strike out with fake MLB tickets this season

April 06, 2017

BBB offers advice for purchasing 2017 Major League Baseball tickets

DALLAS-FORT WORTH, Texas—Baseball season is officially in full swing. For Texas Rangers fans planning on attending a ballgame this spring, Better Business Bureau advises you to be on alert for ticket scams.

There are currently thousands of game day tickets listed on classifieds websites, which seems great to those making a last-minute decision to see a ballgame. However, these sites offer no guarantees and don’t require identification from sellers. Also, be cautious if purchasing tickets from a scalper.

If you do go online to purchase game day tickets, BBB recommends purchasing from a trustworthy seller or directly from the online box office. Some websites offer buyer protections and money-back guarantees.

In 2016, BBB received nearly 3,000 complaints against event ticket sales and ticket brokers nationwide, almost 1,000 more complaints than the previous year. Complainants allege they paid for invalid tickets or paid in advance for tickets that never arrived. Legitimate ticket brokers should be happy to answer questions, send a receipt and verify business information.

BBB serving the Heart of Texas offers the following tips for safely purchasing baseball tickets:

  • Do your research. When purchasing tickets through an online broker, check out their BBB Business Profile at for details about the company, history of complaints and customer reviews. You can also check to see if they are a member of the National Association of Ticket Brokers, an organization that works with law enforcement agencies, professional sports teams and other organizations to fight against counterfeit tickets.
  • Verify the tickets are real. Search for guidance online about how the tickets should look and compare them to the ones you want to buy. Also, compare the price of the tickets to the price of others being sold. Scammers will often list tickets at a very low price to lure victims. Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
  • Check the ticket broker’s refund policy. Research the ticket broker's refund policy before purchasing, and make sure it provides clear details about the terms of the transaction. Assess the company's policy for customer satisfaction and details on reimbursement for canceled events.
  • Watch for hidden fees. Some websites include service charges and additional shipping fees. While these charges should be identified on the website and disclosed to you before the transaction is finalized, read the fine print to make sure you know the total cost that will be billed to your account.
  • Pay with a credit card. Always use a credit card as additional protection. Also, never wire money to someone you don’t know. Money sent via wire transfer is extremely difficult to retrieve. Once the scammers have picked it up, there is little recourse, if any, for getting your money back.


Additionally, BBB advises you to watch out for these red flags:

  • The ticket seller prefers to communicate via email. If the seller doesn’t provide a physical address or phone number as another option to communicate, that’s a red flag. With email, there’s no way to tell where the person is emailing from, or who the person is. Ask questions!
  • The ticket seller can’t provide additional photos or information. Request more photos of the property, or ask to be given a virtual tour via webcam. Ask for specific details about the package or tickets you are purchasing. Legitimate owners and/or sellers will be happy to oblige.

Media Contacts:


Erin Dufner

Bryan/College Station 

Bill McGuire

Fort Worth 

Bob Brackeen

Corpus Christi/Victoria

Kelly Trevino

Permian Basin 

Heather Massey

San Antonio/Laredo

Miguel Segura


Adam Price