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Aussies Warned After Light-Up Dinosaur Festival Confirmed a Scam

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Many Australian parents will recall getting advertisements for a life-sized animatronic and lantern dinosaur festival in their Facebook feed. It might not have been dinosaurs – it could have been insects, sea critters, or monster creatures.

dinosaur festival a scam
The lantern show looks amazing, but it never comes to light. Source: Facebook

The advertisements looked amazing though – light-up and colourful critters that the kids could touch. Carnival rides. Life-sized animatronic dinosaurs and insects. All coming to a venue near you.

Thousands of parents jumped at the opportunity and secured their tickets, which weren’t cheap – $35 for a family of four.

dinosaur festival proven to be a scam
Source: Facebook

These families were left disappointed, either due to the fact the display never actually happened or the display was less than even remotely what was advertised.

Dinosaur festival proven a scam

The company known as Festival Ignite Pty Ltd has several Facebook pages, all promoting various ‘light-up” events across Australia, including Queensland and Western Australia.

Some of the business names include:

  • Lights Festival Australia
  • Dinosaur Lantern Festival
  • Dinosaur Luminance
  • Monster Creature World
  • Festival Concepts Logistics Pty Ltd
Lights Festival Australia a scam
One of the many stunning pictures from a lantern festival that never happened. Source: Facebook

While the shows look great on Facebook with pictures of the various displays and children experiencing the magic, the events appear to never actually happen, leaving ticket-holders out of pocket and no reply from the company.

dinosaur light show a scam
Source: Facebook

Dinosaur Lantern Festival, for example, issued a statement explaining how their events have been “postponed and rescheduled to take place later in the year date to be announced.”

Ticket holders seeking clarity on further event details, refunds or any clients with any questions regarding tickets were told to email them. However, hundreds of parents have shared their experience on Facebook, confirming they have yet to hear a response back.

Office of Fair Trading gets involved

Now the Queensland Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has issued a warning for all Australians, confirming that these light shows are a scam and to avoid them.

mum central
Source: Facebook

According to a media statement released on their website:

“Attorney-General and Minister for Justice Shannon Fentiman urged Queenslanders not to buy tickets from the trader, which claims to exhibit life-size animatronic dinosaurs.

The events are advertised through the DFA website and Facebook pages, with consumers purchasing tickets for events that do not take place. 

Between August and December 2022, the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) received complaints from 30 ticket holders who dealt with the business.

These complaints relate to continued postponement or cancellation of events and the refusal by DFA to provide a refund.”

In 2022, Festival Ignite Pty Ltd advertised dozens of different shows with specific dates and venues for each one.

Be aware of upcoming events 

Festival Ignite Pty is now advertising events in Queensland for 2023 in venues all across Queensland. However, once again, these events appear to be a scam with the Office of Fair Trading confirming the proposed venues do not have bookings with this company.

mum central
Source: Facebook

The Attorney-General urged Australians to be aware of this scam and to not purchase tickets for any upcoming events. 

“The summer school holidays are a busy period for families and a popular time for events. It’s so important that consumers do their research before rushing to buy tickets. Everyone should check reviews and online searches if they think the event might not be genuine.”

What to do if you’ve been scammed

Consumers who have purchased tickets for postponed, cancelled, or future DFA events are encouraged to contact their bank or financial institution to request a chargeback on their credit or debit card transaction, where possible.

Queenslanders who have dealt with Festival Ignite Pty Ltd trading as DFA, who are not satisfied with their interaction, are urged to lodge a complaint with OFT online at http://www.qld.gov.au/fairtrading or by calling 13 QGOV (13 74 68).

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Avatar of Jenna Galley

Born and raised in Canada, Jenna now lives in Far North Queensland with her tribe. When the mum-of-three is not writing, you can find her floating in the pool, watching princess movies, frolicking on the beach, bouncing her baby to sleep or nagging her older kids to put on their pants.

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