Event promoters are being encouraged to be on the look out this Crop Over season for an ever increasing number of people who are trying to get into events with fake tickets.
Several individuals were turned away from fetes last weekend after they showed up with knock-off tickets.
And while there have been such attempts in the past, one source indicated that the practice seemed to be on the rise in recent times.
Promoter of the increasingly popular Awaken Ultra Premium all-inclusive breakfast party, Tremayne Austin, told Barbados TODAY 18 people were caught with fake tickets trying to enter the pre-dawn event last Sunday.
This, he said, was “on a larger scale” than normal.
“The ticket was actually printed but what we did was added a barcode, so they felt that they probably could have done it too. You know people take risks with everything. But we got all of them,” he said.
“He actually got in because the head person for the ticket company was not at the door at the time . . . . So the person that was dealing with the ticket system thought it was a glitch, but when he came back they saw who it was who came in and when he was questioned he didn’t even put up a fight, he just walked out,” Austin said.
The event promoter told Barbados TODAY when that individual was questioned he said he had bought the ticket from “someone who said they know the promoter”.
Austin said he was still probing the issue and there was a possibility he would report the matter to the police after he was certain who sold the fake tickets.
“I just want to make sure that the information I have is correct,” he said.
Austin said not everyone who purchases a fake ticket is aware it is not legitimate, and he advised those who plan to attend ticketed events to buy their tickets from the advertised locations.
“You either buy them directly from me if you know me or from the box office if you are not sure,” he said.
In some cases the knock-off tickets were being sold for the same price as the legitimate ones, and in other cases they were cheaper.
Alex McDonald, one of the main promoters behind the popular all-inclusive Beach House Breakfast Fete and the all-inclusive pool party, Splash, told Barbados TODAY he was aware some individuals may try to enter parties on fake tickets.
However, he warned that it was highly unlikely they would get in given the level of technology in use at the doors.
“We always tell people to buy from the legitimate box offices because they will have the right and legitimate tickets,” McDonald said.
“People who buy from other people will be found out because now most people have scanners that they will use. So if you buy fake or scalp tickets we will find out and no matter how much you pay for them we can’t honour those.
“It would be an attempt at fraud so we would [report it] and that person would be in trouble. But more importantly, the person whose ticket was denied should also report it because they would have paid money to get the ticket from somebody having thought it was real,” McDonald advised.
However, he pointed out that a lot of people were aware they were doing something wrong when purchasing fradulent tickets because they would most likely pay less than the advertised price.
“If a ticket is worth $200 and they said I have one for $150, then it is probably not real,” the promoter explained.
Public Relations Officer of the Royal Barbados Police Force Acting Inspector Rodney Inniss told Barbados TODAY it was an offence for people to try to enter an event with a fake ticket.
“Once it is a fake ticket it is offering a fake document and that is fraud,” he said, while adding that only a few cases had been reported.
“You might get a case where people get bad experiences, but in terms of being reported to the police and people giving evidence we don’t have a lot of those cases,” Inniss said.
“There will be people out there trying to get deals for various reasons and you have to make sure when you enter into a contract or deal with a person, make sure it is legitimate and you don’t fall victim to any falsified documents or tickets or anything along that line. You are advised to purchase your tickets from legitimate sources, and bear in mind if you are not going to do that you are taking a chance. And if you are taking a chance you are part and parcel of the outcome,” the police spokesman warned.