By Aiza Imran
Most people would love to travel but they are scared of being scammed or duped in a foreign country, lucky for them that we have a guide just for that. Traveling the world is a fantastic adventure, but it does come with a certain amount of risk. Although most people you encounter will be polite, there is always the possibility that someone will be dishonest in an attempt to rip you off, steal from you, or deceive you in some way, no matter where you travel. Knowing how to avoid travel scams is a lifesaver. You are at a disadvantage as a traveller in another nation since you will be befuddled, overwhelmed, and unclear about how things function. Because of your perplexity, you are more vulnerable to unscrupulous people who will try to exploit you. Travel scammers are well aware of this, and their schemes are geared to take advantage of it.
This isn’t to say that you shouldn’t travel and take advantage of all the fantastic experiences it has to offer. Not everyone is aiming to take advantage of you, and most travel scams can be easily avoided with a little research and common sense. The goal is to be as prepared, informed, and attentive as possible in order to prevent being taken advantage of.
Tips to Avoid Travel Scams
We will inform you guys of popular travel scams. Investigate the Most Common Scams to Make Sure You’re Not a Victim; One of the most effective ways to prevent becoming a victim of a scam is to be aware of the fraud in the first place. If you’re familiar with how a common scam works, the moment the fraudster starts laying the groundwork, alarm bells should start ringing. Before you leave on your trip, search for “Common Scams in (Your Destination)” on Google and conduct some research. There may be scams that are specialised to a particular location, such as a popular tourist site, or scams that are pervasive throughout a region.
Be Wary Of Anyone Who Approaches You First, Claiming To Be “Helpful”; In many popular con schemes, the con starts with someone approaching you. They may be offering you travel advice or inviting you somewhere, but you should be extremely cautious in this circumstance. What are they trying to achieve by approaching you and delivering you this ostensibly “useful” advice? We are not asking you guys to be doubtful of every single person you meet on your fun tour but just to be that little more cautious and careful in your endeavors. Not everyone wants to help you or show you a good time.
As we said before, this isn’t always the case, as some people are truly friendly and only want to help. Just be aware of strangers and exercise your discretion with those that approach you out of the blue.
Do Not Be Afraid To Inquire; Don’t be scared to question something if it seems unusual or doesn’t feel right. Simply by questioning something, you can alert the scammer that you are aware of their scheme. Even if it proves out not to be a scam, asking questions might help you gain a better understanding of what’s going on.
Add Up And Count Your Expenses; Another useful technique is to pay attention to what you’re buying and sum up the entire amount you’re paying. This one time I tried to buy some water and a few snacks at a roadside stall in Pakistan, it was a fantastic example of this. “150 rupees,” the shopkeeper stated as I placed my stuff on the counter. I was ready to hand over the cash when I stopped and thought. “Wait a minute…” says the narrator. “Can you tell me how much these crisps cost?” I inquired. “Each for 20 rupees.” And what about this bottle of water? “There’s also 20 rupees.” In my thoughts, I totaled everything. “That brings the total to 80.”
Trust Your Gut; Last but not least, when travelling, one of the most important things to remember is to trust your instincts and listen to your gut. When someone tells you anything that doesn’t sound logical or seems too good to be true, you’ll notice that alarm bells go off in your thoughts. Pay attention to those warning signs and approach each scenario with a fair dose of scepticism. We’re confident that if you abide by these trips and tricks then you will not be duped by anyone. This guide is a surefire way to avoid travel scams.
The writer is a student BS Journalism Studies 8 Semester at School of Communication Studies, University of the Punjab, Lahore. She can be reached at [email protected]