Top 10 Tourist Scams to Avoid

When you go on holiday, MANY of the locals will realize you are a tourist. Therefore, some of these people think that it's best to scam a tourist because they don't know much.

Beware of these common tourist scams when traveling!
The Top Ten
1 Fake Desk Calls

This is pretty disgusting. A thief will call your hotel room pretending to be from the front desk. They will pretend there is an issue with your details and ask you to confirm your credit card details.

Stop right there! They are more likely to call you at night, saying it is an emergency, so you don't have to go downstairs to the lobby to sort it out.

Never, ever give your credit card details over the phone when at a hotel!

These scamming thieves will take all your money!

Where does this happen mainly?

Worldwide. Any country can do this.

2 Expensive Taxi Drivers

You probably don't know every single street while on vacation, right? Taxi drivers may sneakily use this to their advantage. They could purposely take routes, roads, and streets that have a lot of traffic or take a very long route back to your hotel. Some of these taxis have fake or altered meters, where they can take a lot more money from you than normal.

I was in Italy once. The taxi driver charged 100 euros from the airport to our hotel. It took an hour to get there when it should have taken 20 minutes!

Where does this happen mainly?

Worldwide. Every country probably has taxi drivers that do this.


3 Friendship Bracelets

A man or woman will suddenly offer you a friendship bracelet while you are sightseeing. If you say no, the person will still try to put it on your wrist, even if you are trying to get away. They will then ask for a high amount of money just for a stupid bracelet that you didn't want anyway. While you are trying to get away, their friend might pickpocket your stuff while you are distracted.

Your best bet? Run away if someone asks you to buy a friendship bracelet! Go into a cafe or a store.

Where does this mainly happen?

Paris, Rome, Barcelona, Cairo.

4 The Photographer

When you are taking photos, a friendly local might come up to you and offer to take a picture together (as a family or couple). You will obviously say yes, as there isn't a picture of all of you together. He will ask you for money after the photo has been taken. What the hell?

If you refuse, this local will run away with your phone or camera! Beware! Never say yes to a random person who wants to take a photo of you all.

Where does this mainly happen?

Whole of Europe.

5 Friendly Locals

Not everyone is as friendly as they seem! You should not trust everyone. A nice person may see that you are struggling at a ticket machine or a cash machine, perhaps because it works differently. It may seem like they are being really nice and helping you understand. They probably speak English as well. However, they could be peering over your shoulder to check out your PIN number so that they can rob your account later! They may even grab the cash you just withdrew. If you still see the 'local' wandering near you after you've asked them for help, tell them to go away!

Where does this happen mainly?

6 Pickpockets on the Train

We have all heard of this before. Tourists are more likely to wear backpacks or side bags. Trains will be overcrowded and stuffed. Anyone can pickpocket anyone without them knowing, especially if it is in a crowded area. Keep your backpacks at the front, and secure any bags you might have!

Where does this happen mainly?

Also in China, but not so much on the train. Just in airports or generally crowded areas.

If someone bumps into you, they might be part of a team of thieves.

7 Fake Police

Policemen who look official may approach you and explain that they need to check your wallet for security purposes or to make sure there is not any fake cash in it. When they return it to you, cash might be gone! They might claim that there is a problem with your passport/visa and that you might be arrested. To avoid that from happening, you may be told you have to pay a large fine that you probably can't afford!

Where does this happen mainly?
Mexico, Romania, Bangkok, Colombia.

I saw this thing where there was a deposit box, and this guy was standing by it in a police uniform while saying it doesn't work and to just hand him your stuff. How on earth can a deposit box be broken?

8 Fake Train Tickets
9 The Gold Ring

A lady may drop a ring while you are walking, right in front of you. She will ask if you dropped it. When you say no, she will act shocked and claim that it is real gold (it's not) to entice you to buy it. Then, she will offer to sell you the ring for a large amount of money. Sometimes, this could be when her accomplice is trying to pickpocket you, and you don't even notice.

Where does this happen mainly?
Italy and Paris.

10 Room Inspectors

Two people, who look like hotel inspectors, might knock on your hotel door for room service or claim that they need to inspect your room. One might distract you with conversation while the other goes into your room to steal your belongings.

Where does this happen mainly?

The Contenders
11 Translator

Sometimes when you're changing forms of money (like from euros to American dollars), you can't read the local language. Someone will offer to help you and ask what amount you want to exchange. Then they will ask for your credit card number and password. Do not tell them! They will remember this information and steal your money!

12 Counterfeit Money
13 Fully Stocked Minibars/Fridges

So you stay at a hotel, and in your room, you see a stocked fridge full of snacks and drinks. You think that they're included with your hotel stay. Wrong! The fridge has sensors. If you take an item or even touch/move it, the sensors are activated and you will be charged.

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