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Online ticket scam impacts Royal Winnipeg Ballet


People looking to attend the ballet in Winnipeg are being asked to buy tickets directly from the box office after the Royal Winnipeg Ballet (RWB) had to foot a bill of around $10,000.

Jocelyn Unrau, director of marketing and communications at RWB, said the accounting and database teams found a record high number of chargebacks with tickets for their recent play of The Nutcracker.

She said tickets were bought by scammers using stolen credit cards and then resold on third-party websites.

“So in January, when unsuspecting people got their credit card statements, they saw random charges for the ballet,” said Unrau. “So they went to their credit card company to get them refunded, which they did, but the credit card companies still needed us to pay for those tickets.”

She said this hasn’t been a major problem in Winnipeg yet, but arts and culture organizations across the country are starting to see an increase in this kind of scam.

To help combat the issue in Winnipeg, she recommends people buy tickets locally, instead of third-party sellers.

“Do a little bit more work when you are buying online. So often, third-party sellers will show up first, second, or third in your Google searches. So go a little bit further down and see if can find the original organizational website and use that to purchase your tickets.”

RWB is also taking extra steps to help people who may have bought fraudulent tickets. Unrau said they are holding an extra chunk of seats to ensure people can get into the shows.

“But again, we’re going to have to raise more awareness. We’re diligently looking at our security protocols and things like that in order to change the story of this.”

If Winnipeggers are looking to buy tickets, Unrau said they should buy them from RWB’s website. Top Stories

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