Equestrian fans keen to get last-minute tickets for the Olympics are being warned to beware unlicensed sellers.

Olympic organiser LOCOG has published a list of 71 websites that are illegally selling tickets for the Games.

Reader Tracey Yeadon alerted H&H to one such site – www.liveolympictickets.com, based in Spain – that she felt was selling tickets at inflated prices. The site asks for between £384 and £847 for cross-country tickets (face value £55).

It turns out the site is not an official Olympic ticket reseller. LOCOG has warned H&H readers to beware of this and other websites unofficially offering tickets to equestrian and other sports.

Ms Yeadon said: “I have been trying to get hold of tickets for the cross-country day [30 July] since they were first released, but like a number of other people have been unsuccessful.

“I feel very strongly that it is unfair that people like myself who have a genuine interest in the sport cannot get hold of tickets, when these sites can and are making a profit from selling them.”

Unwanted tickets are supposed to be returned to LOCOG for resale at face value, but it appears tickets are being sold on.

A spokesman for LOCOG said: “We urge people only to purchase tickets from the LOCOG website and authorised sources.

“We also have a website checker on our website to allow you to confirm whether a site is genuine or not.”

The tickets sold by unofficial sites may not be counterfeit, but it is illegal for tickets to be transferred from the person named on the ticket.

People trying to use them may find themselves barred from entry. The terms and conditions state that anyone trying to use such a ticket “may be considered a trespasser, may be ejected and may face legal action”.

Tickets may be transferred to friends and family, but in theory the original ticket-holder needs to be available to speak to by telephone.

Horse & Hound could not contact the website www.liveolympictickets.com
for comment.

This news story was first published in the current issue of H&H (26 July 2012)