Fraudsters can create convincing looking scam websites or create fake profiles on accommodation booking websites. Social media pages and advertisements are also increasingly being used for these holiday scams.
Use reputable and official booking websites. Avoid social media group pages and advertisements. If you do go through a social media page, make sure you can confirm that the person or company you are talking to is legitimate.
Spotting and avoiding holiday scams
Is the price for the flight or holiday considerably cheaper than the average cost elsewhere? If so, you should be suspicious.
When booking through a UK travel agent, check that they have the ABTA and/or ATOL logos. You can use their respective member search facilities to identify if a booking agent is legitimate. Note: other countries may have their own alternative authorities.
If the only way to pay is through bank transfer, this should raise alarm bells. Bank transfers are difficult to trace and typically nonrefundable. Paying by credit card is the safest option as certain protections are in place to recover any funds lost due to fraud.