headquarters in San Francisco, California. 

Image Credit: Anne Cloudman (CC BY 2.0)

I myself have purchased tickets off of Craigslist twice, both for NFL games and had no troubles. Both sellers were season ticket holders that had tickets in hand that they just wanted to get rid of at the last minute. I met them within the city limits with cash and the rest was history. Would I recommend that other fans go this route?

Simply, no. Sports fans work too hard for their money to risk getting scammed and there are too many reliable ticket brokers that offer a 100% guarantee for their consumers (Stubhub, Ticketmaster, Ebay, TicketNetwork, Ticket Monster). I did because each time it was a playoff game and couldn't afford the prices offered by other websites. Look at Craigslist for what it is. It's an online classified website. Buyer beware, every transaction is at your discretion and you're often dealing directly with the owner. The anonymity is what makes Craigslist risky, whereas on Ebay, sellers have a reputation to protect.

When browsing for tickets, you will notice that some listings are listed 'tickets by dealer'. This means that your transaction will be online and most likely, legitimate because a broker owns the tickets.  For the listings that are listed ' tickets by owner', you will be dealing directly with an individual. For those of you that haven't seen Craigslist's FAQ page about scams, here it is in summary.

  • Disregard emails and texts from people that don't live in your area. Only deal with locals that you can meet in person.
  • Never wire funds to someone you don't know. Even though Paypal offers protection, it's not worth the headache.
  • Do not accept cashier checks or money orders - banks will cash fake checks and money orders and then hold you personally responsible.
  • Transactions are between Craigslist users only. There are no third parties to provide you with a guarantee.
  • Never give out financial information such as your bank account, social security number, paypal email address, etc.

There is also the possibility that you could have a "verbal agreement" to purchase tickets only to be stood up when the transaction was supposed to take place. This can put fans in a tough spot as game time approaches. Although I also don't recommend purchasing tickets on the street from scalpers (I've done that too), doing so would be a safer alternative than Craigslist. For a long list of reliable ticket brokers, check out our 'Buy Tickets' page on the main toolbar.


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