7 Travel Scams & How to Avoid Them

I’m sure you’ve heard it said “it sounds too good to be true”, right? You’d be surprised how many people get scammed every year. Here are some to keep in mind. 

Bait and Switch Website Deals
The Promise: $999 for an air + hotel trip to (fill in the blank)
The Reality: When you arrive, you see it’s not what the “pictures on the website” show – and you likely won’t get a refund.
Tips: Check sites such as TripAdvisor or Oyster – or better yet – use a Travel Professional – to make sure you get not only a fair deal, but a great experience!

Car-Rental Collision Damage Waivers
The Promise: The car rental place usually uses fear tactics to get you to buy it.
The Reality: Most major credit cards include this free, so check yours!
Tips: Also ask your auto insurance provider what they provide for when you rent a car.

Photo of Car & Passenger by averie woodard on Unsplash

Credit Card “Verification” Fraud
The Promise: Within a few hours of checking into your hotel, you get a call to verify your card. 
The Reality: This is a scammer trying to steal your data.
Tips: Tell the caller you’ll visit the front desk to resolve the issue. 

Copycat Websites Quoting Below Price Quotes
The Promise: Save money, price matching, etc.
The Reality: Many copycat websites are not reputable and will only take your money. You may also end up with a parking lot room view, or something like that.
Tips: Make sure you find the property’s actual website, don’t forget about airfare, insurance room type, inclusions, and transfers. 

Travel Agent MLM companies
The promise: “Become a travel agent” and get free or low cost vacations to the best places!
The reality: You would need a substantial amount of booked vacations in order to qualify
Tips: It’s often advertised like an MLM, refer your friends and family and so on. 

Vacation Clubs
The promise: cheap vacations if you join
The reality: About the same as what you can find online
Tips: If you see something like this, check the Better Business Bureau for complaints, and keep in mind they do charge a fee to join, and if you go to book, likely, you won’t find anything all that crazy awesome. 

Photo of Chub Cay, Bahamas by Alix Greenman on Unsplash

You Won a Trip – for Free! 
The Promise: You get a letter, email, or call from a call center agent or a robo-call claiming you’ve won a cruise or trip somewhere, usually like the Bahamas or Vegas. 
The Reality: You’ll pay a lot of fees to use it and/or give your credit card to verify your identity, at which time you may be at risk for identity theft. 
Tips: Enter to win, and you win this, but never anything else? Go back to “too good to be true”-ville. 

If it sounds too good to be true – remember – it probably is!  Your vacation time and money is precious – don’t let someone steal it! These are not the only scams, not by a long shot, but just a few to keep your mind sharp as you think about any plans coming up!

Are you ready to plan your next trip? Even as far out as 2023, I’m ready to help you and prices are starting to climb, so I wouldn’t wait too long!  Reply to this email or inquire on my site to get started! I hope you travel soon – whether near or far! Connect with your loved ones and enjoy this life!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *