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A stringent anti-scalping law has just come into force in Japan ahead of RWC

By Online Editors
Strict new anti-scalping laws in Japan will leave ticket scalpers facing severe punishment (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

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A stringent new anti-scalping law came into force in Japan on Friday making the resale for profit of tickets for sporting and other public events illegal.


While in the past a number of existing laws and local government ordinances were used to fight ticket scalping, the new law specifically targets illegal ticket resale and has been brought in just ahead of Rugby World Cup 2019. Individuals violating the law face fines of up to ¥1million, up to one year in prison, or both.

Japan Rugby World Cup 2019 Organising Committee CEO Akira Shimazu said: “We have been working on this matter in close partnership with the Japanese authorities and welcome this new law that specifically targets illegal ticket resale, giving authorities a clear and strong framework in which to police this crime.

“With demand for tickets across Rugby World Cup 2019 far outstripping available supply, people may be tempted to resell tickets for profit or to buy tickets through unofficial sources. Therefore, I can’t stress strongly enough that it’s just not worth the risk.

“Ticket scalpers face severe punishment, while fans buying tickets through unofficial sources risk paying large sums of money for tickets that may not get them inside the stadium. It would be absolutely heart-breaking to outlay the significant time and expense to get to Japan, and then to be denied stadium entry due to an issue with tickets purchased through unofficial sources.”

World Rugby chairman Bill Beaumont added: “Rugby World Cup is one of the must-see global major events and we are anticipating more than 400,000 fans to travel to Japan to be a part of what promises to be a very special tournament.


“We are very aware that unofficial sources will try to exploit fans via unofficial ticketing, hospitality or merchandise and urge fans to be vigilant and check out authorised ticket providers at before purchasing via the official channels and use the official resale service. This new legislation is another important and welcome programme to protect fans.

“It is our priority to ensure that their experience is memorable for all the right reasons and therefore it is important that all fans planning to attend the Tournament are informed that they face a major disappointment, including being refused entry, unless they purchase their tickets, hospitality and merchandise from official outlets.”

Tickets are still available for a number of matches via Fans can also purchase tickets via the Rugby World Cup 2019 Official Resale Service.


Opened at the end of May, the service gives fans a safe and secure platform from which to resell Rugby World Cup 2019 tickets at face value for matches they can no longer attend. Since opening, over 13,000 tickets have been offered for resale and more than 7,000 tickets have been purchased by other fans. Details on the official resale service can be found at

WATCH: Part one of the two-part RugbyPass documentary on what fans can expect in Japan at this year’s World Cup

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