Holidays are right when the brain goes into relaxation mode, even planning them can be fun.
Regrettably, scammers are very aware of this and are implementing a variety of scams targeting vacationing people who have disconnected and overly anxious travelers in the planning stage who do not pay attention to alarms when an agreement appears that is too good. in fact.
Help is at hand however. Here the consumer champion Which? It details six new vacation scams that travelers should keep in mind and reveals how to avoid them.
Websites and fake hosting listings
Which? refers to a report by MailOnline Travel earlier this year that highlighted how fake ski chalet websites have been affecting tourists
Accommodation is usually the largest single expense on vacation, which means that most people are eager to get the best possible deal.
But which? says it's easy for scammers to post fake hosting listings on major websites and trick people into handing out thousands of pounds.
Which? Experts say that a common trick is for scammers to claim that credit card payments have not been made and then request a bank transfer.
Which? It refers to a MailOnline Travel report earlier this year that highlighted how fake ski chalet websites have been plaguing tourists.
Several outraged skiers told MailOnline how they thought they had reserved a luxury villa, but in reality they transferred money to the scammers, with one victim losing 30,000 euros. Then they discovered that the banks had no power to do anything about it.
The sites took pictures of real ski chalet sites and offered them under different names at very low prices.
When the customers made a bank transfer payment, the thieves disappeared with the money.
To protect themselves, the consumer champion advises verifying the reliability of the property by doing a Google image search of the property images to see if they appear on other websites.
Which? It also says that travelers can use Google Maps and Street View to see if there really is a property in the address.
He also advises never to pay by bank transfer and insists on paying by credit card. If you pay by credit card, you have the protection of Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act of 1974. This means that you can claim against the card provider if you are cheated.
Flight offers to Dodgy
The lowest prices on flights are often offered on seemingly convincing websites that have been established by scammers.
Which? reports that Fraud in Action says a recent wave of fraud has targeted travelers traveling to Asia, Africa and the Middle East.
The consumer group says scammers choose trips that seem "once in a lifetime" and in some cases buy genuine flights with stolen credit cards.
The lowest prices on flights are often offered on compelling websites that have been created by scammers.
However, once the theft of the card is reported, the airline cancels the flight, but the fraudsters still have false confirmation reference numbers that they then sell to innocent victims.
Which? says that the best way to avoid being scammed in air fares is to make sure you book through an agent who is a member of Abta.
Internet is full of fake websites that charge at all costs for travel documentation, which sometimes is not legitimate.
Which? reports that, recently, dozens of British holidaymakers were forced to buy visas upon arrival in Turkey, since those who bought on a fake website.
Another scam warned by experts is that websites charge the British for a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC), when in reality they are completely free.
Meanwhile, what? says that half of the 20 best search results for & # 39; This visa & # 39; for the United States they were not official. It is available for $ 14 directly from the US government website. UU (Esta.cbp.dhs.gov).
The consumer group says that going to the Foreign Office website is the best way to find the official website for visas.
Meanwhile, to obtain an EHIC, visit the official website.
Logging into free wifi is usually one of the first things travelers do when they arrive at an airport.
But it is known that scammers can hack Wi-Fi connections to steal personal data.
Which? He says that some even convince tourists to provide credit card details so they can steal more than browsing habits.
Fraudsters are known to be able to hack free Wi-Fi connections at airports to steal personal data
Experts say that to avoid being cheated, it is advisable to ask the airport staff for the real Wi-Fi connection to make sure it is legitimate.
It also says that any connection that does not promptly request a password should also be treated with extreme care.
In the meantime, if you are asked for IDs and passwords, always provide false details.
Vacation & # 39; free & # 39;
Thousands of people have been sold under pressure for timeshare.
But which? He says the trick has now evolved with scammers who offer victims scratch cards in which they "win". Free vacations and then they are pressured to buy timeshares.
The consumer group points out that although timeshares are not illegal, many people have stayed with properties they do not want after paying high fees.
Experts advise that people should never accept & # 39; free vacations & # 39; and ignore any hard sales technique.
It also suggests that timeshare owners should be wary of companies that say they can sell it for you, but require money in advance.
Major sporting events and concerts provide another unexpected opportunity for fake websites and scammers.
Which? He says that only this summer there were reports that World Cup tickets sold for £ 23,000 per pair without any guarantee that buyers would be allowed in the stadium.
Similar scams have also taken place in music fans willing to pay large sums of money to see pop stars like Justin Bieber.
Which? explains that criminals often exploit events where prices are high and availability is low.
During this summer's World Cup, football fans were told to only buy tickets from official vendors.
Not to be absorbed, which one? Advise only to buy tickets from legitimate sites and web pages that have the padlock symbol in the corner of the URL and start with & # 39; https & # 39 ;.
For those who buy second-hand tickets, experts say they must make sure that resale is allowed, since some tickets are only for the named person.
Resellers are also legally required to tell buyers the original face value of the ticket and where they will be seated.
Members of Star (Society of Ticket Agents and Retailers) have subscribed to a code of conduct and have a procedure for dealing with complaints.
Which? Travel editor Rory Boland told MailOnline Travel: "Criminals are finding increasingly sophisticated ways to cheat tourists, both during the booking process and when they are on vacation.
& # 39; If something seems too good to be true, it almost certainly is. Do not return your money until you can be sure it is the real deal.