Touring Scams

Scammers act in different spheres of people’s life, adapting their schemes to different conditions. Special “love” scams are used by tourists, people unfamiliar with the realities of a foreign country and trusting by definition. The Times magazine publishes the most famous travel-related schemes, as well as provides recommendations for personal safety. Not all of them are used against our tourists, however it is worthwhile to familiarize yourself with the common methods of deception.

Touring Scams

Fake vacation clubs.

There are organizations that invite people to free lunches or receptions held in luxury hotels. In exchange for food and cheap gifts, a multi-hour promotional presentation is held. Visitors are invited to buy the right to a guaranteed annual vacation-travel, if you pay a certain amount of money. Usually, everything is surrounded by the atmosphere “now or never”, which forces you to make a decision as quickly as possible. However, when trying to get his first tour, a good-natured person begins to understand that everything goes wrong, as promised. To protect yourself from such fraudsters, you need to remember the following. First of all, any promise must be verified in writing, there should also be noted your right to cancel your membership in the club. The most important thing is the opportunity to take the contract home and think it over. These are the criteria that distinguish a fake club from the present. The safest approach to organizing your holiday in general will not be to contact such clubs, but to use the services of a trusted operator or to choose tours independently through the Internet.

Winning a free trip.

Usually scammers call by phone and in an electronic voice inform that it is enough to press any of the figures to win a tourist train. Naturally, curiosity wins and a person connects with the operator, who says that only part of the trip is won, the cost, say, $ 2,000, and to get the full prize you only need to pay in addition 500-700 dollars. To confirm payment, you usually ask for these credit cards, after which it removes the amount of money that may become a surprise for you. Therefore, it is worthwhile to understand a simple rule – if you are told that you won a prize in a contest in which you did not participate, then it is most likely a scam. In our country, scammers do not refuse to stop gullible people on the street, playing the same way not only tour trips, but also home appliances. After paying part of the prize from the scammers there will be no trace.

Purchase of a travel agent card.

Sometimes scammers are offered to purchase a certain travel agent card, which will save from 50 to 70% of the cost of tours and places in hotels. Credulous citizens are promised that the processing of such a card will take no more than 15 minutes. Such a scheme is often carried out using the Internet. Naturally, the travel agent card itself is not free, but its sellers guarantee that with its help, the costs will quickly pay off, as the owner will be able to qualify for special rates for employees of this field of business. Sending these credit cards, in exchange, a person actually receives a card, only if presenting it with a demand to reduce prices will cause laughter. Therefore, if you really want to get a job in the tourism business and enjoy some advantages, then it is worth looking for it in a proven way – through recruitment agencies.

Prepayment of the tour.

This scheme is old as the world and the most expensive, at least for the UK. The company takes money from the client for the future journey, and then suddenly closes. Naturally, there is no talk of any obligations or return of money. Yes, sometimes it can be a consequence of the crash of someone’s business, but more often than not this happens due to scammers. To protect yourself from such a case, you should pay careful attention to insurance, make sure that it will cover all the troubles from the trip.


Recently, scammers are trying to do everything possible to get a credit card of their victim to themselves for a while, until a person suspects something is wrong. This can happen when a tourist pays, for example, for lunch. However, recently, attackers began to use another method, they call in the middle of the night in the room, stating that they had problems with the account and to go down with the card down to the receptionist. Naturally, the sleepy tourist tries to solve the problem as quickly as possible, simply dictating the credit card number on the phone, which is what the scammers are trying to achieve. To avoid this, you should carefully monitor who you tell your credit card number and what happens to it when it disappears from sight. After each tour, you should carefully check the state of the account, remember, any illegal operation with the card provides for compensation.

False policeman.

This classic scenario works almost always, we all favor the representatives of the law, besides, being abroad. Usually tourists get acquainted with someone who, through alcohol or interesting stories, is rubbed into trust. Next, a situation is created in which the tourist is involved in the center of the scandal (a fight, planted drugs or other unlawful actions). Immediately there are “policemen” who threaten with a long prison term, but agree to settle the matter peacefully for some amount of money. In a panic, tourists usually agree to pay off, so as not to experience problems. To avoid this, it is necessary to approach cautiously the problem of alcohol, drugs and casual acquaintances in a foreign country. If such a situation has already occurred, then it is necessary to draw the attention of the surrounding and, maybe, real policemen to it. Although this can be and is difficult, if indeed completely illegal act. If the conversation takes place alone and in a dark alley, then in that case it is better not to argue, pay and draw the appropriate conclusions.

Scams with currency exchange.

Exchange points are often involved in fraudulent schemes. Taking advantage of a profitable course, you can in reality receive an amount much lower than expected. So, the exchanger can give out an amount of a bundle of small bills that will be difficult to quickly count. Or, when calculating the amount of money given out to tourists, they can be distracted by extraneous conversation. Often there are cases when in opaque envelopes instead of money the cut paper is given out. To avoid this, it is recommended to change money not alone, but with someone. The partner will help to concentrate on the money, taking on the reflection of distracting maneuvers. After the exchange, it is recommended to take a check, you need to choose static institutions, and not personalities, on the street. In any case, it will be where to come with the police. Another way, however legal enough, to deceive the tourist is the game with the course. So, after the exchange, the amount may be significantly lower than expected, since on the sign, as it turned out, the exchange rates are indicated only for large sums. The difference in such cases can become quite weighty. Typically, travel agencies recommend to obey a guide who will recommend proven exchange points.

Local friend is a drinking companion.

Many people are familiar with the scheme, when an attractive guy or girl comes to you in a bar to meet you, you drink together, and the stranger then receives from the bar a part of the profit received from the attracted orders. This practice is generally accepted, but at some resorts scammers use it with much more serious consequences for the victim. In a drink you can mix a narcotic substance, as a result the tourist will wake up cleaned up to a string in an unfamiliar place. Therefore, enjoying communication in such a situation, do not forget to look at your glasses, but rather give general preference to bottles.And do not lose your head in any situation, even the most seductive interlocutor, perhaps, is looking for his motives for communicating with you. Well, if it’s just an innocent commission from the bar.

Private cabby.

A trip by private taxi abroad almost always involves the risk of at least paying twice as much fare or visiting a string of unwanted and intrusive souvenir shops, and as a maximum fall victim to robbery. The recipe is simple – in no case in an unfamiliar country do not use private taxi.

Istanbul shoe cleaners.

Sometimes scammers are pretty harmless. So, in Istanbul, shoe-shakers developed a whole scenario that allows you to make money on tourists. So, on the way a foreigner throws a brush. While a polite and obliging tourist serves her purifier, he offers to serve an assistant for free. Who will resist this? In the process of cleaning the tourist is told the heart-rending story of the hard life of a worker, after which it will be impossible to deny him monetary assistance. And it’s hard to protect yourself from such fraud, just console yourself with the fact that you essentially paid the cleaner for his service. Russian tourists tell cases when in India they themselves were looking for cleaners, as some passers-by deliberately stained their shoes with feces.

Bustle near the metal detector.

Usually such a scheme is used. The tourist puts his things on the container, but the next person after him jumps ahead, terribly in a hurry. Here he gets stuck near the detector and for a long time puts out of his pocket every little thing – keys, watches, coins. While you patiently wait for the end of the performance, the accomplice of the swindler grabs the laid out things and disappears. To avoid such a situation, it is recommended to stand firmly on your feet and carefully look after your things. And do not advertise your welfare with your luggage. It is deliberately rich tourists and attracts all kinds of scammers.

Folding bus.

The presence and operation of this scheme proves once again how foolish and trustful people are. Insurance companies claim that such a case of fraud is common in Canada and the United States. Tourists in the bar stranger offers to participate in petty fraud. All that is needed is to get on the bus and take part in the disassembly between the passengers. Everyone will be accused of the driver’s accident and will receive thousands of dollars of compensation from the company-owner of the transport. A new friend is only required to give a certain amount for information about the bus number and the time of the incident. However, no accidents, of course, will not happen, the money will be in the hands of the swindler.

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