/ Travel & Leisure

Unofficial sites selling Euro 2016 tickets for up to £5,000

With Euro 2016 about to kick off, it’s not just the performance of England, Wales and Northern Ireland on the pitch that risks leaving fans disappointed.

Football fans will be getting out the barbecues and bunting ready to cheer on the home nations at the Stade Vélodrome, Stade de Bordeaux and Stade de Nice, as Euro 2016 kicks off next weekend. But if you’re looking to grab a last-minute ticket to the sold-out tournament you could be disappointed – and not just at the final score.

Our investigation has revealed a significant number of unofficial websites claiming to sell Euro 2016 tickets in breach of restrictions.

UEFA’s terms and conditions clearly say tickets can only be resold through its official resale site and that you must bring photo ID to get in to the stadium. So fans who buy tickets sold in someone else’s name are running a big risk of parting with a lot of money only to be turned away at the gate.

And we’re not just talking about a few quid. We found some tickets on unofficial secondary sites selling for up to £5,000 and the price is expected to go up as it gets closer to the tournament final.

Why are you breaking ticket rules?

We contacted websites, including www.gettickets.com, www.atstickets.com and www.europeanchampionshipstickets.com, advertising tickets for games across the tournament. We asked why they’re selling tickets in breach of UEFA rules and why they’re not warning people of the risks in buying them.

None of them replied and we’ve now shared our concerns about the sites with Trading Standards, Action Fraud and City of London Police, as well as other consumer organisations in countries whose teams are taking part in the tournament.

Fans who buy tickets from these sites may receive official tickets that were bought in someone else’s name, but we also want to warn you about a different risk – of websites that may be set up with the sole aim of scamming money from fans looking for tickets.

If you’re searching for Euro 2016 tickets, we advise you to buy only through official channels. If you don’t, there’s no guarantee you’ll be able to get into the game and you could be left thousands of pounds out of pocket. We also think more must be done in the UK and across borders to stop sites that do break the rules and scam members of the public.

Whether buying tickets to the football or other sold-out events this summer, Which? has a free guide on how to tell if a ticket seller is official or not.  

If you’ve bought a ticket that hasn’t turned up, or you suspect is fake, contact your credit card provider immediately, as you may be able to get your money back. Also, report them to Action Fraud so it can investigate.

Have you bought tickets from unofficial sellers, did they arrive on time and where you able to see the event or did you have any problems?

Comments
Guest
Peter Butler says:
6 June 2016

These sites still exist because they know some obsessed fans of football or music will do anything at all just to get hold of a ticket These obsessed”fans” will pay any amount of money for a ticket. Sense and reason just does not exist when they Must have that ticket at any cost or even risk. Getting that ticket is all that’s on their mind

Guest
dieseltaylor says:
6 June 2016

What I find depressing is that you can only go so far in protecting people from themselves in terms of risking money. Another point would be the dearth of stistical information to give weight to the “problem”.

I fyou told me how many people got ripped off – to straight fraud, to tickets sold at overprice, and the monetary costs – we might find that overall though much written about it is actually a very very small number of people.

Preventing the wholesale block-buying of tickets for touting WOULD be worth concentrating on and I believe would be fixable.

Profile photo of Patrick Taylor
Guest

europe-economics.com/publications/secondary_sales_market.pdf

May be of interest.

Profile photo of malcolm r
Guest

“We found some tickets on unofficial secondary sites selling for up to £5,000 and the price is expected to go up as it gets closer to the tournament final.” Sometimes the phrase “more money then sense” seems appropriate?

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Guest

It is very disappointing that this is taking up the valuable time of the police and Trading Standards. It would be good to see the sites closed down.

Profile photo of Vanessa Furey
Guest

Part of the problem is that it’s not always easy for fans to spot which is a scam, and which is a secondary ticketing site – either reselling other fans tickets or ones scooped up by touts. Sometimes Trading Standards or Action Fraud only get to hear about it once people have lost out.

But even when consumers do get a real ticket, there is no guarantee where you’ll end up in the stadium or even if they’ll let you in, particularly if you’re about to end up in a block packed full of rival fans.

Good news is that we think the story has already had an impact, but i’ll update as soon as I can confirm.

Guest
Koen Decavele says:
6 June 2016

I have tickets, but due to an injury I can not go to France.
I wish to give back the tickets back to the UEFA Cup, but that is not possible they say !
I;m not allowed to give my tickets to a friend. I’m so lost my money. This is not fair. There are no possibilities to in an official manner to Exchange or return the tickets?

Profile photo of Vanessa Furey
Guest

Thanks, Koen, we are aware that the official resale portal closed on the 31st March – which does leave fans in a bit of a dilemma and seems strange as things like the Olympics allowed people to resell their tickets up until the actual event on the official site.

We’ve asked UEFA what fans should do either if they can no longer go or if they have a real ticket with someone else’s name on. We’ll update our site with that info as soon as we get it. But based on the t&c’s of the sale, if you sell or transfer your ticket to another person then they run the risk of turning up and not getting in, as if they do get asked for ID the name on the ticket needs to match that of the ticket holder.

Profile photo of Patrick Taylor
Guest

Sorry but I am a bit perplexed. The fact that the official website for re-selling closed March 31st and yet it is not mentioned in the body of the article is astonishing.

” UEFA’s terms and conditions clearly say tickets can only be resold through its official resale site and that you must bring photo ID to get in to the stadium.”

Were only able to be resold perhaps …

However UEFA DO need to explain what this barmy thinking is about. Are the stadiums being used able to do anything for unused tickets? looking at the preliminary blurb I see this:

” An official ticket resale platform will allow fans to sell their tickets through
the UEFA EURO 2016 ticket portal at face value.
The ticket resale platform will be available in March/April 2016. This will
allow fans to legally purchase tickets from other fans, eradicating the risk of acquiring
invalid or fraudulent tickets and ensuring a smooth resale process. ”

Earlier than advised then! Why?

Profile photo of Beryl
Guest

Having watched the French Open Final yesterday I wonder why anyone would want to go there and spend any money to watch sport of any kind. It was blatantly obvious the French allegiance lay with a Serbian rather than a Brit! Maybe I am biased but I think I am turning Brexit!!!

Profile photo of malcolm r
Guest

He was a Scot, in favour of the EU! Maybe there were other motives? I actually only turned to tennis, and caught the final point, by chance. Tennis, like other professional sports, is a business – perhaps “sport” should be reserved for those who play just to enjoy it?

Guest
kel meyler says:
7 June 2016

Anyone and I mean anyone who stupid enough to pay these prices for this football competition or any other music or like are simply bonkers, I wouldn’t step outside the front door and pay these obsene prices [and I love football], leave the ticket touts stick their tickets where the sun don’t shine. Bonkers Bonkers, Bonkers all part of modern Britain must have, must go cost is irespective.

Profile photo of malcolm r
Guest

The UEFA website shows ticket availability for various matches, at face value. Is this up to date? If so why would anyone use resellers?