Traveling is an exciting experience but can also be a minefield of tourist scams and traps. Dishonest individuals target tourists, taking advantage of their unfamiliarity with local customs and surroundings to scam them of their money or belongings.
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You should be aware of the common tourist scams and traps, from fake tour guides to overpriced restaurants, pickpockets, and fake ticket sellers.
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Taking a few precautions and keeping an eye out for possible tourist traps and scams can help ensure that your travels are safe and enjoyable.
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One of the most common tourist scams around the world is taxi fraud. Some taxi drivers may try to scam you by taking a longer route to your destination, inflating the fare, or even driving you to a different place.
One of the most alarming tourist scams is when scammers pose as police officers to gain access to your personal information and belongings. These scammers may be wearing fake police uniforms, have fake badges, or carry phony identification.
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One of the most insidious tourist scams is using skimming devices on ATMs. Scammers may install small devices on the ATM that can read your credit card information and steal your money.
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A typical tourist scam in busy tourist areas is when someone offers you a free item, such as a flower or bracelet. However, after accepting the item, the person may demand payment or guilt you into donating money to their cause.
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While it’s natural to want to help those in need, some scammers will use this desire to their advantage. In some tourist areas, individuals may pose as beggars or use their children to gain sympathy and solicit money.
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Photo: Timo Stern