Common travel scams

Nobody likes to be ripped off when travelling. Here are some common scams to avoid on your travels.

If you are catching a taxi from the airport to your destination accommodation, make sure you travel with a licensed taxi. There are a number of apps available, such as World Taximeter to help you to research the expected costs of taxi fares. With a little knowledge you can negotiate and agree on a fare in advance, but make sure you don’t hand over your cash until you arrive at your destination.

Take care when overnighting on trains. There have been reports of a scam where travellers are knocked out by anaesthetic gas, which has been fed into their compartments, allowing thieves to rob unsuspecting travellers. They wake up hours later with a throbbing headache and their valuables missing.

Additionally be wary of accepting food or drinks from people you have just met when travelling on public transport. Unscrupulous criminals use drugs such as Rohypnol to drug victims.

When renting a vehicle – whether it be a car, motorcycle or jet ski, take photos before you leave to avoid charges for damages you have not caused.

Always check your bill, take an extra couple of minutes to peruse your account to ensure you are not being charged for items you didn’t consume or services you did not receive.

And of course, the old favourites we’ve all heard of – the mother who drops the baby, the person who stumbles into you, or the person who squirts tomato sauce onto you when they are trying to putting it on their hot dog and offers to clean the mess off – in each scenario your valuables are gone.

Have you been the victim of a travel scam? Do you have a story to share or advice to offer to ensure travellers are not scammed?

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