With the Boston Red Sox heading back to World Series, Attorney General Peter F. Kilmartin is warning fans to use caution when purchasing tickets or booking travel for the Fall Classic.
"Excitement over the Red Sox' redemption season and the team's first World Series appearance since 2007 have fans scrambling for tickets to see the hometown bearded heroes take on the St. Louis Cardinals. Unfortunately, there are those who are ready to take advantage of that enthusiasm and excitement with offers of fake ticket packages and inflated prices," said Attorney General Kilmartin. "Whenever there is a demand for tickets, scam artists will try to take advantage. One of the things to watch for is people advertising tickets they don't have and can't deliver. Another frequently used scam is the sale of counterfeit tickets so verify the authenticity of whatever you purchase before paying."
Attorney General Kilmartin offers these tips:
• When purchasing tickets, try to buy tickets directly from the MLB or an MLB-approved ticket broker. • Before buying tickets, check the event website and make sure the seats actually exist in the section you are requesting. • If you go through a ticket broker, do your homework. Check with the Better Business Bureau to see if there are any complaints against the ticket broker or agency. • If you plan on doing business with a ticket broker in another state, check that state's ticket reseller statutes. It is against the law in Rhode Island to overly inflate the price of tickets. As outlined in RI General Laws § 55-22-6, ticket sellers may not charge a service fee of over $3.00 or 10% (whichever is greater) of the price printed on the ticket. • Always pay by credit card – do not wire funds or pay by cash. A credit card may provide some protection if you do not receive the tickets or if they turn out to be counterfeit. • Ask the seller to email or fax a copy of the actual tickets before making a payment. Make sure the ticket information includes the correct date, time, location and seating details.
If you plan to travel to St. Louis:
• Use travel agents or websites that you trust. • Make sure that a website address starts with "https" (not "http") and there is a padlock icon on the web address to indicate it is a secure website. • Get details and confirmation numbers in writing – legitimate companies will provide a written or emailed confirmation of your reservation.
About the Office of the Attorney General Consumer Protection Unit The Office of the Attorney General Consumer Protection Unit investigates and mediates consumer complaints concerning unfair and unlawful business practices and misleading advertising arising out of alleged violations of the Deceptive Trade Practices Act. If groups of people are victimized by a deceptive trade practice, this office may file in the Superior Court a civil investigative demand, which is a formal investigation. In appropriate cases, a lawsuit to stop the illegal business practice may be initiated.
Apart from carrying out its statutory responsibilities, the Unit also provides information and referral services to the general public. Consumers are directed to the appropriate governmental or private agencies for help in answering specialized questions or resolving disputes that are not within the Unit's jurisdiction.
The Consumer Protection Unit is available to speak to community groups on how to prevent being a victim of identity theft and other scams. For more information, please visit www.riag.ri.gov or call 401-274-4400.