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Travel Scams And How To Outsmart Them

Travel scams can happen to any of us — no matter how seasoned a traveller you are (points to self) or what part of the world you’re visiting.

The best way or the best defence against any scams is to be aware of the most common con jobs and in this case; always trust your gut, especially when you’re travelling on your own.

Here is the list of some famous scams happening around the world and how to outsmart the scammers.

Old Man Falling on the Metro / Train

How it's done:

The scams prey for 'easy target' and normally happens in crowded coach, one man (sometimes old man) will fell into one woman, causing a scramble as bystanders helped them up. When everything sorted-out, victims normally notice that their wallet, phone or valuable will be gone.

What happens is, while people and bystanders try to help, their 'group' or the person itself manage to take your valuable before exiting the train.

How to overcome :

Always be alert to your surroundings, especially in a crowded place.

Avoid sitting; standing near the exit door.

Always pull your handbag/bag to the front.

Avoid taking out your phone/wallet in a crowded place.

Fake Entrance Fee

How it's done:

Scammers will set up what look like an 'official' ticketing booth. Or someone will be pretending to collect entrance fees whereby there is no entrance fee required.

How to overcome :

Ask for an official ticket or at least receipt.

Always research beforehand.

Newspaper Slide

How it's done:

Someone will approach you while you are having your coffee or eating in a restaurant offering newspaper or sometimes asking a few questions while putting something on your table. What actually happens is, they try to distract your attention while putting the newspaper or stuff near your phone. When they have done or you refuse their offer, they will walk away, with your stuff.

How to overcome:

Don't ever ever ever put your phone or wallet on top of the table while you are having your coffee or eating.

Be extra alert when people approach you, keep your phone/wallet or handbags close to you at all time.

The Golden Ring

How it's done:

Quite popular in Paris, but we are sure it happens elsewhere too. A person (normally a man) will bend in front of you or in some case chase you from behind while holding a gold ring or trinket. They will claim you dropped it and in return, they want some 'compensation money'.

How to avoid:

If it is not yours, not feel obliged to take. Refuse politely and walk away.

Tempered ATM Machine

How it's done:

Some of the ATM machine been tempered with a device to collect your personal data and usually your ATM Card will be stuck or swallowed by the machine. After a while, you will notice that they already emptied your bank account and so on.

How to avoid:

Use the 'official ATM machine'. Meaning that only withdraw from the machine located in a bank.

Bring extra cash so that you don't need to withdraw from overseas (that will have certain charges according to your bank).

Go for a cashless transaction, either e-wallet or using your cards when necessary.



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