The R&A warns fans about mis-selling from unofficial operators ahead of the 146th Open at Royal Birkdale
Ahead of The 146th Open at Royal Birkdale next summer, The R&A is warning spectators not to fall victim to misleading sales practices by unofficial operators selling tickets and hospitality products.
Golf’s most prestigious championship returns to the Southport links from 16-23 July 2017. Fans are advised to be vigilant and to carefully scrutinise all ticket and hospitality packages before making a purchase to avoid disappointment.
In light of concerns about the mis-selling of tickets and hospitality packages, The R&A has reviewed and updated its admissions policy and fans will not be permitted to re-enter the venue after leaving Royal Birkdale.
Johnnie Cole-Hamilton, Executive Director – Championships at The R&A, said, “The Open is a tremendous celebration of sport and we are committed to providing a safe, enjoyable experience for everyone that attends the Championship.
“In recent years we have received numerous complaints from spectators who have been misled when purchasing packages from suppliers looking to take advantage of the excitement surrounding The Open. This includes hospitality packages advertised as being on-course when they are in fact located a number of miles away from the venue or tickets sold by third-party resellers that provide no guarantee of entry to the course.
“We are working closely with a number of partners including Merseyside Police to ensure that fraud-prevention measures are in place and our fans are protected. We will employ a no readmission system this year to provide a safer experience for our spectators and try to prevent them falling victim to misleading sales tactics.
“We are very much looking forward to welcoming more than 200,000 spectators to Royal Birkdale next summer and want to ensure that they have the best possible experience while watching the world’s best players competing for the Claret Jug.”
A spokesman for Sefton Council said: “We are delighted that The Open will be returning to the borough in 2017. It is a fantastic world famous event and it brings so much to the local economy and surrounding area.
“Tens of thousands of visitors will discover Sefton, many for the first time, and we want that experience to leave a lasting positive impression.
“Unfortunately, as with any event of this size, there are a number of people who will use The Open to try and make money illegally. That’s why we encourage consumers to avoid ticket touts and be vigilant in the coming weeks and months against those selling inclusive hospitality packages that offer more than they can deliver.
“Consumers who have a complaint should contact Sefton Trading Standards on 0151 934 2136.”
The guidance for fans is as follows:
- Fans are advised to purchase tickets and hospitality through The Open’s official channels to avoid disappointment. Spectators risk being denied entry to the course if they are using a ticket purchased on their behalf by an unofficial supplier or third-party reseller.
- The R&A has reviewed and updated the admissions policy for The Open and fans will not be permitted to re-enter the venue after leaving Royal Birkdale.
- Official hospitality packages sold by The Open hospitality team and verified third party agents are the only on-course hospitality experiences at Royal Birkdale.
- The Open has partnered with a number of third party suppliers to sell ticket-inclusive official hospitality packages on their behalf. Verified third party suppliers are listed at www.TheOpen.com/buyofficialhospitality
- By purchasing tickets and hospitality from official sources, golf fans are contributing to the future success of the sport through golf development programmes in the UK and around the world.
Tickets for The 146th Open at Royal Birkdale from 16-23 July 2017 are now on sale at early season prices. Concession tickets are available for under 25s (age 16-24) and children under the age of 16 attend The Open free of charge when accompanied by an adult. To purchase tickets please visit www.TheOpen.com/Tickets.To purchase official hospitality packages, please contact The Open hospitality team on +44 (0) 844 371 0883, email Hospitality@TheOpen.com or visit www.TheOpen.com/Hospitality for further information.