Common Travel Scams that might affect your Experience
Are you traveling abroad, sometimes it is best to be prepared for the unexpected? Sometimes this includes learning about common travel scams that can affect your experience. These are some of the most popular, effective, and cost-efficient ways to help protect you while traveling abroad. Before all of this, make sure to look for the best travel and tour packages for an affordable trip.
7 Common Travel Scams
Travel scams include frauds and issues regarding your overall experience from commute to accommodation. Here are some of the top scams that are faced by the majority of the travelers in different countries:
1. The Broken Taxi Meter
Taxi drivers in some countries will tamper with the taximeter so that it will always read a high fare. If the meter starts at $10 and you get in without checking, it might register $100 by the time you reach your destination. To avoid this scam, be sure to check that your taxi meter is working before you get in and if it says anything more than $1, call another cab. The best way to avoid all of these issues is to use rideshare apps for coupon codes and discounts.
2. Overcharging on Food & Drinks
Ask for a menu; many restaurants charge tourists two or three times the local prices for food and drinks and may claim they don't speak English as an excuse if you complain. For wrenches that should cost $6, expect to pay $12 or more.
3. The Hidden Resort Fee
Many hotels and resort chains add a daily fee for so-called "resort amenities," including Internet access, parking, and fitness centers, which can add $20 or more to your daily rate. Read the fine print before booking or ask about the fee when you're checking in.
4. Telling Tourists about Fake Police and Souvenir and Art Galleries
Police will sometimes approach tourists on the street and inform them that they've just come from a crime scene or that they have counterfeit money on them, and then ask to inspect their wallets or purses. This is just a ruse to distract you while an accomplice picks your pocket or steals your wallet. The best way to avoid this scam is to keep your belongings in front of you at all times, especially when riding in a taxi.
5. The Gullible Travelers
Travelers are often too trusting when they are abroad. For example, one tourist was walking along the street in Rome, Italy. A man came up to him and said that he had found a wallet full of money near the Coliseum and wanted to turn it into the local police department. He said if the tourist would come with him, he would take him there.
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The tourist did not have a problem going with him and once they arrived, he realized that his companion was a police impersonator. They were immediately arrested and thrown in jail.
This scam often targets Chinese tourists because they often carry large amounts of cash, thus putting them at risk of being kidnapped or robbed by the criminal to their right or left. Scammers ask you to ride with them in the car, which will then lead to your kidnapping. This is one of the most cost-efficient scams as you are forced to pay for everything within 24 hours, including the driver's time!
While staying at the hotel, make sure that you are in a safe hotel or Airbnb. Don’t try to compromise on your safety for a few bucks. You can search for hotels deals and discounts online for safer and better accommodation.
7. The Staged Car Accident
You will often see this staged car accident occur on busy streets. The perpetrator arranges traffic and then pulls up near the car that is stopped -- you're hit by the other car and are rushed to the hospital to be treated. At the hospital, your insurance company will be called to pay for medical bills; however, you will never receive the money! This is one of the most common scams in countries like Italy and Japan.