June 13, 2024

Avoid Travel Scams This Summer

Summer…the most wonderful time of year for a lot of us here in Texas. Unfortunately, it’s also the most wonderful time of year for scammers. With so many people traveling, these criminals are out in full force, waiting for you to slip up so they can still your money and/or identity. Here are some tips for avoiding travel scams this summer.


Deals That Seem too Good to be True

Who doesn’t want a deal on a trip, especially if it involves a whole family? But, if you come across a travel website that offers vacation deals well below market value, think twice before booking. Ask yourself how the same trip is twice the price on every other travel site you’ve visited and then do some research:


  • Google reviews for the site
  • Google to see if the site is legit (type: Is (insert web URL) legit?)
  • Google the web URL with the word “scams”



Even Legit Travel Sites Have Scammers

Most vacation rental apps have money back guarantees, but you have to follow their rules. A big no-no is paying the property owner outside of the app. If someone asks you to do that, report them to the app and do NOT pay them for anything. They are either scamming you or scamming the rental app (or both). Now, it’s not uncommon to pay in advance on these apps, so be prepared for that. But never pay outside the app.


Beware of Look-Alike Sites

This may or may not surprise you, but scammers pay for social media advertising to lure you to their “look-alike” sites. These are websites that look like the major vacation sites, but they take your money and personal information instead of helping you find your dream vacation. Look for subtle differences, like:


  • A web URL spelled incorrectly
  • Grammar mistakes on the page
  • Verify contact information (an actual street address on Google Maps)
  • Check for a refund policy


Instead of clicking on a link in an ad or a search result in Google, go directly to URL of the real website where you think the deal is offered.


Wherever your travels take you this summer, be safe, have fun and be cautious of anyone trying to offer you a deal too good to be true.


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