‘ANGRY F1 FANS LEFT HIGH AND DRY AS TICKET COMPANY FAILS’, ‘SPA TICKET CONFUSION FOR THOUSANDS OF F1 FANS’. This is what can happen when innocent Formula 1 fans fall victim to fake ticket selling shops offering Formula 1 tickets that never arrive.
During the Formula 1 race year, a number of ticket selling scams typically pop up as online ticket selling shops. The most common ways F1 fans are scammed through these ticket shops is by paying in advance for tickets that never arrive. This is after paying a hefty amount for the ticket which includes paying for service charges and additional shipping fees.
Fake Formula 1 ticket selling scams can take many forms. Many of these scams look like legitimate companies that offer Formula 1 tickets but after the fans make the purchase, they never receive their tickets and later learn that the company was a scam. This is exactly what happened in June of 2012, when many F1 fans found themselves without tickets after they purchased tickets from a ticket shop known as ‘Simply The Ticket’ for the British GP at Silverstone. Many F1 fans that had intended to travel to Valencia for the European GP were scammed as tickets did not arrive despite paying for them. For example, Hayley Pearson who lives in Great Moulton, South Norfolk, had a few days off and had planned to go to the European Grand Prix. She decided to purchase her tickets from ‘Simply the Ticket’. She booked tickets on the site and then never received them. Another example was Ben Miller, who was set to take his girlfriend to Valencia for the F1 race but did not receive his tickets from the company either. Ben tried contacting ‘Simply The Ticket’ but Simplytheticket.com was not able to be reached and there was news that the website had been taken down and the company had gone bust. What happened to Mrs. Pearson and Mr. Miller can also happen to you.
In another similar incident in August of 2012, the Dutch media reported that around 6,000 F1 fans who bought tickets for the Belgian Grand Prix at Spa-Francorchamps were not able to attend the event because their tickets did not arrive despite paying for them. If this was not enough, at the Indian GP event several F1 fans were duped by online ticketing vendors. The modus operandi of these fake F1 ticket vendors was simple. They claimed themselves as authorized ticketing partners, sending SMS messages saying “You have won a free Forumla-1 ticket in the India Grand Prix mobile draw promo”. This even led the organizers of the Indian GP to issue a warning to F1 fans to be aware of the scamsters selling F1 tickets at a lower price. These scams could have been easily avoided if the fans were aware of all the official ticketing partners or could have checked the details behind the ticket sellers carefully. Unfortunately, not many F1 enthusiasts have the ability to perform background checks on ticket selling shops and thus could possibly be left outside the gates on race day either without tickets or with fake tickets. Not a good situation.