Online hotel booking scams have cost travelers nearly $4 billion

Personal Finance


But consumers should be on the lookout for more than just sneaky sites, said Katherine Hutt, a spokeswoman for the Better Business Bureau.

“When it comes to travel scams and other high-end, high-cost scams, you’re more likely to have the scammer reach out to you,” she said.

Most times, scammers reach out over email, but sometimes they’ll call, too, she said. In this instance, the scammer pretends to be calling from a well-known hotel company to notify you of a hot deal that’s about to expire. Typically, they’ll say something like, “there’s only one room left” or “there’s someone on the other line,” she said — anything to get you to buy right then and there.

This kind of urgency should be an instant red flag, warns Hutt.

“They want to put pressure on you because they don’t want you have time to do your research and ask around,” she said.



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