FIFA, the governing body behind soccer’s World Cup, has implemented a ticket resale policy that bars fans from reselling their tickets on the secondary market. Instead, FIFA recently created its own Ticket Transfer Platform. The World Cup begins June 11 and ends July 11.
The Vancouver Olympic Committee (VANOC) did something similar for Winter Olympic tickets. VANOC created a fan-to-fan resale marketplace, they said, to minimize fraud in the secondary market.
FIFA introduced their resale platform for security reasons and to ensure what they call “economic fairness,” which they define as allowing fans to purchase tickets “without being subject to the misleading practices of those who engage in unauthorised re-sales and undermine policies established by FIFA.”
The organization’s policy states that ticket holders cannot sell, donate, or transfer tickets without FIFA’s written approval. The only legitimate way to resell tickets is through FIFA’s resale platform. Tickets purchased through illegitimate channels are invalid.
Fans submit their tickets to the FIFA platform up until three days before a match starts (excluding printed tickets; these cannot be resold). FIFA will charge a 10 percent administrative fee. Fans can expect to see their money by mid-July after matches end. FIFA does not guarantee that tickets will be sold.
New reports from New Zealand, where ticket resale is legal, claim that FIFA has not alerted brokers to their resale policy. Despite this, brokers have decided to go ahead independently reselling tickets while warning purchasers they might be turned away at the gate.
During World Cup in Germany four years ago, officials reportedly stopped checking where tickets came from before several of the matches.
A quick search shows that RazorGator is selling World Cup tickets to games not available for purchase on FIFA’s Web site. Final game tickets on RazorGator are going for between $1,500 and $2,000. Vivid Seats is offering tickets to the opening South Africa vs. Mexico game for between $284 an $1,445, depending on where the seat is located.
To date, FIFA has sold over 90 percent of its tickets, with 200,000 left to go. This despite worries in March that the World Cup held in Africa would fail to sell out for the first time in modern history.
“I have no doubt in my mind that all of the matches will be sold out,” Organising Committee CEO, Danny Jordaan, said during a press conference in Africa this week. “I am certain that this World Cup will be a sell-out and those remaining tickets will be bought. About 300,000 tickets were sold in the last few weeks alone.”