Common Travel Scams You Wish You Had Known Earlier
Traveling around the world is a fantastic idea, especially when you love seeing beautiful places and want to meet new people of different ethnicities, cultures, and origins. However, if you fall for a scam, the trip instantly becomes a devastating lesson for you. There are many friendly locals, but everyone isn’t genuine.
Scammers are everywhere; sometimes, the most insightful people fall for their scams. Scams can be done during bookings for tickets, hotels, or local transport. That’s why caution is essential to avoid such scams.
Common Travel Scams You Wish You Had Known Earlier
Here are some of The Most Common Travel Scams that you should know if you’re a traveler.
#1. Friendly Local
Locals are mainly welcoming not because they are scammers, they might be genuine people. But, you have to stay alert so that no loss will happen. If a scammer act as a friend, you should try to avoid him. He can approach you by saying he wants to learn English or your native language and start talking casually.
Such scammer may offer you to visit their place or office. You have to stay calm and avoid accompanying them. If he forces you, cut him off by telling that you to go somewhere else. Keep your tone positive and relaxed, and deal smartly with such people.
#2. Counterfeit Money
If you aren’t much familiar about the currency of a country in which you are staying, there are high chances that this scam might happen to you. It’s essential to be aware of the currency. Counterfeiting money can be spotted when you take a local ride or eat in a low-quality restaurant.
The waiter will come to get the payment when you have done your meal. He change your cash with a counterfeited currency and ask you to pay again. It would be best if you took cash in small amounts whenever visiting such local places to avoid scams.
#3. ATM Skimmers
Always use a well-known bank’s ATM. ATM skimmers are very common nowadays. ATM scammers use a plastic chip and place it on the atm machine, so when you insert your card it gets stuck. Such scammer will get your account information and your card number. If your card gets stuck, visit the bank or call your bank to block that card immediately; hence no one can misuse your personal information or withdraw your money.
#4. Found A Gold Ring
When you find a ring that seems valuable and someone picks it up and ask you if it’s yours or not, then they will ask for a double price for it. If they start forcing you to give them money, the only way to ignore such scammers is to keep yourself firm and walk away without saying a word, so he doesn’t try to pressure you.
#5. Rental Scams
If you hire any vehicle, take pictures of the existing damages before going on a ride. It is a usual scam that when you give the transport equipment back to the owner, he will demand an extra amount for the damages and start blaming you for the injuries. A piece of evidence is necessary if such scammers call the police and try to get you arrested. This scam is prevalent in Thailand.
#6. Fake Cops
Fake cops are everywhere; they will mostly stop you at the spot for no valid reason and ask you to bribe them. Otherwise, they will arrest you. Such cops are in uniforms and mostly wearing plain clothes. They can ask about your identity card and give you threats. You should tell them you are going to the station and if they stop you from doing so. It will prove that they are fake.
Pickpockets are the common scammers in Italy, so you can avoid such scammers by protecting your valuable accessories. Try to keep them in a small bag and carry that bag in a hidden at that place. Your belongings must be in front of your eyes so the robbers could not not rob your belongings in a crowded place, like local food, shopping streets, and local transport.
#8. Taxi Overcharge
If you haven’t thought about it, even though taking a taxi in a foreign country will scam you, you should try to be extra attentive. These drivers take you to your destination and charge you double amount for the trip cost. They claim they have a driver’s license and are part of a renowned taxi company. But they are not.
#9. Free Accessories
This scam is much like what fake Buddhist monks in Korea would do. It is a globally known scam you will encounter in over visited European areas. A person with some innocent looks picks on you and offers a friendship anklet, necklace, or handmade accessories.
They not only offer you the item but also place it on you without even asking. You should already realize how bad the situation is at that instant since they are forcing you to take it. And, of course, scammers do not plan to give it to you for free.
#10. Deceitful Travelling Deals
Before traveling, research should be done in-depth. To save yourself from a huge loss, you should get all the information related to the travel agent, hotel and everything. Many travelers prefer the cheapest deals. Some websites offer excellent traveling deals to make you fall into their fraudulent scheme.
Many people complain about how they fell for an affordable tour package, which was a scam. Some tour agents also scam people by fake promises and offering great deals. So, seeing a tour package, if you doubt its authenticity, it is better to ignore it. Because you never know what will happen in the future.
#11. Sauce Spoiling Trick
Attention is a significant part if you want to travel to different places. Scammers want to distract your attention towards something else so that they can rob your money quickly. One trick is spilling sauce or any drink on your dress to divert your attention and then flee with your valuable belongings.
#12. Children Pretending To Be Disable
Some children pretend to be disabled in some countries when they ask for money. It’s very tough to deny them. Sadly, scammers use children and such circumstances to earn money through deception. A whole organization work behind this scam.
#13. Information Theft
If your credit or debit card has been stolen in another country. Instantly, report it to the police station. Scammers use your information and call you to ask for your confidential information to help. But that’s not the reason. Scammers exploit such information for various crime activities.
Some people start traveling without any thought of researching or preparing themselves. That is one of the reasons scammers prey upon them. But as I’ve explained about different possibilities related to these frauds, you can protect yourself now. Never pay money through cryptocurrency, wire transfer, or gift cards. Use a famous traveling website or app for booking. Every time hide cash in small amounts at different places. Finding a standard premium package at a meager price can be one of the most distressing scams.