Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search warns of holiday scams

MEDIA RELEASE warns of holiday scams

With the summer holidays fast approaching record number of Australians are headed overseas. Ben Rosier, travel expert at warns holidaymakers to beware of tricks and scams that can wreck a trip of a lifetime.

“In a foreign country people let their guard down, relax, and often behave in a way they never would back home – leaving them open to highly-organised tourist scams,” says Ben.

“These scams often play on the traveller’s kind and trusting nature, their desire to save on holiday purchases, and their lack of local knowledge.”

Michael McAuliffe, executive director at insurance provider SureSave, says it is difficult to pinpoint the exact number of Australians who fall victim to scams overseas as travellers often don't realise they’ve been caught out until it is too late and many are simply too embarrassed to admit being fooled by a simple con.

“All it takes is a momentary lapse of judgement to fall prey to scammers, and yet you might regret it for a very long time,” says Mr McAullife.

The key piece of advice is to keep your wits about you and learn from past travellers’ mistakes and, if in doubt, call the police.

Common cons:
Fake Police: If a traveller finds themselves being accused of a crime they didn’t commit, chances are they’re dealing with a counterfeit cop. A common story is that fake police might charge an over the top, on-the-spot fine for putting out a cigarette in public. Always check the officer’s ID and contact the real police if you have any doubts.

Gem Scams: En route to their official destination dodgy tuk-tuk or taxi drivers take travellers to stores where they are offered deals that are literally too good to be true. The so called Gem Scam can actually involve any high-priced or desirable item such as leather goods or "authentic" carpets. Victims soon discover their "jewels" may be nothing more than polished glass and those larger items, well; they never make it back home.

Distraction: These can be anything from a child waving a paper in your face to an old woman needing assistance or a local helping you wipe mess off your shirt. While you are distracted, a second crook comes in and swipes your stuff. The key to making it out with all your valuables intact is to pay careful attention to your belongings and others around you.

Bar Scams: These can take a variety of forms, but the basics involve a traveller, usually male, being approached by locals who invite them for a drink in a bar. After a few drinks the locals are gone and the traveller is left with a ridiculously large bill.

Taxis: Some of the most common taxi scams are inflating fares or telling passengers their selected hotel/bar/restaurant is closed – but, never fear, they know a better one. Always travel in licenced taxis and if there is not a meter, agree on a fixed fare before departure. Also, insist on going to your original destination and see if it’s closed for yourself. searches and compares the best value holidays by working with more than 300 travel partners to find the most affordable travel flight and travel packages.

Today’s Hot Deals at

Return flights to Vanuatu from Sydney from - $565. Includes taxes. For travel from 1 February until 31 May 2013.
Return flights to Los Angeles from Melbourne – from $1128. Including taxes. For travel until 28 November 2012.
Return flights to Las Vegas from Sydney from $1526. For travel from 27 November to 2 December 2012.
Return flights to Fiji from Sydney from $550. Includes taxes. For travel between 2 February and 26 March 2013. Fares from other ports are from $617-Brisbane; $733-Melbourne; $831-Adelaide.


© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


Trade: NZ Trade Deficit Widens To A Record In September

Oct. 27 (BusinessDesk) - New Zealand's monthly trade deficit widened to a record in September as meat exports dropped to their lowest level in more than three years. More>>


Animal Welfare: Cruel Practices Condemned By DairyNZ Chief

DairyNZ chief executive Tim Mackle says cruel and illegal practices are not in any way condoned or accepted by the industry as part of dairy farming.

Tim says the video released today by Farmwatch shows some footage of transport companies and their workers, as well as some unacceptable behaviour by farmers of dragging calves. More>>


Postnatal Depression: 'The Thief That Steals Motherhood' - Alison McCulloch

Post-natal depression is a sly and cruel illness, described by one expert as ‘the thief that steals motherhood’, it creeps up on its victims, hiding behind the stress and exhaustion of being a new parent, catching many women unaware and unprepared. More>>


DIY: Kiwi Ingenuity And Masking Tape Saves Chick

Kiwi ingenuity and masking tape has saved a Kiwi chick after its egg was badly damaged endangering the chick's life. The egg was delivered to Kiwi Encounter at Rainbow Springs in Rotorua 14 days ago by a DOC worker with a large hole in its shell and against all odds has just successfully hatched. More>>


International Trade: Key To Lead Mission To India; ASEAN FTA Review Announced

Prime Minister John Key will lead a trade delegation to India next week, saying the pursuit of a free trade agreement with the protectionist giant is "the primary reason we're going" but playing down the likelihood of early progress. More>>



MYOB: Digital Signatures Go Live

From today, Inland Revenue will begin accepting “digital signatures”, saving businesses and their accountants a huge amount of administration time and further reducing the need for pen and paper in the workplace. More>>

Oil Searches: Norway's Statoil Quits Reinga Basin

Statoil, the Norwegian state-owned oil company, has given up oil and gas exploration in Northland's Reinga Basin, saying the probably of a find was 'too low'. More>>


Modern Living: Auckland Development Blowouts Reminiscent Of Run Up To GFC

The collapse of property developments in Auckland is "almost groundhog day" to the run-up of the global financial crisis in 2007/2008 as banks refuse to fund projects due to blowouts in construction and labour costs, says John Kensington, the author of KPMG's Financial Institutions Performance Survey. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news