The seven most common scams when travelling abroad

The beginning of a new year, winter holidays and Christmas are always a good excuse to travel. But every trip is different and we can always be a victim of scammers, no matter how experienced travelers we are. Here we show you seven usual ways they can trick us out there:

The phone call to your hotel room

You receive a call in your hotel room, pretending to be from reception. They ask you to verify your credit card information, as they say they have been unable to charge from your card or had an error on their system. What is happening is certainly a thief trying to get your data.

To avoid this: hang up and call back to reception to confirm if it is true.

Do not trust all calls
Do not trust all calls

In the airport security control

In line at the airport security control, two thieves are placed one in front and the other behind you. In the same order the luggage on the conveyor belt awaits to be scanned. Then, the thief in front of you passes through the metal detector having forgotten to empty his pockets of keys, coins, etc. He goes several times through the detector, they will inspect him and you stay behind looking at everything and waiting your turn. While that happens, the other thief, who is behind you, searches valuables in your tray and changes them to his.

To avoid this: watch your luggage and alert the airport staff if you see something weird.

Hold the baby

This robbery is perpetrated by a group of people and a lady with a baby, of course. All of a sudden and unexpectedly, a woman gives you her baby urgently. Without any suspicion you hold it having then both hands busy and leaving your luggage disregarded. Before you realize the baby is a doll wrapped in a cloth the thiefs will have taken all your belongings.

To avoid this: we hope this does not happen to you cause it would be difficult to not fall into the trap.

Hold this "baby"
Hold this “baby”

The fake police and the drug dealer

In the middle of the street a guy approaches you to offer you on the quiet something illegal. At the moment two alleged police agents appear, without uniform but with their respective and apparently legal plate. Then they ask you and your new accomplice your wallet and passport. What comes next is obvious.

To avoid this: double check the plate and if you have questions, request to call on another police or a police station.

The bracelet

Someone approaches you with its friendly face and gives you a wrist band. You tie it, thinking about what good people are in this country and, just after having it on your wrist, your new friend asks you for money for it. If you refuse, it will start screaming that you have stolen it.

To avoid this: stop thinking there are so many good people there out and reject any gift from strangers.

Those typical hippie bracelets
Those typical hippie bracelets

The typical taxi drivers

There are many ways a taxi driver charges you more than it should, from souped taximeter to taxi drivers who refuse to use it or say it does not work.

To avoid this: make sure it is a registered taxi and it will use the taximeter; if not, negotiate the price before the race and have a rough idea of how much it really costs by asking a local person.

Always check it is registered
Always check it is registered

The wrong hotel

We continue with taxi drivers, so helpful sometimes and not so much other times. In this case, you get to your destination, you get into a taxi and ask to take you to the hotel. The driver lies to you saying that the hotel was closed but it knows a similar one. You accept and it takes you there. Then it turns out that the room rate is higher and once you go to the room the taxi driver will get a corresponding commission.

To avoid this: get off the cab, get into another one or call your hotel to verify the address.

Photos: Kenneth, chrisps, José Manuel and Charyl.