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Avoiding Scams while Traveling

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Scams are part and parcel of world travel. Whether you are visiting a third world country or standing in the heart of New York City, you are vulnerable to scams. Here are a few that you should be aware of:

1. A stranger asks for fuel money – Usually this is accompanied with a sob story of a funeral, family emergency, etc. If you do feel compelled to help this person, tell them that you will go with them to a gas station and you will find that they disappear very quickly.

2. Free gift – Someone asks you a very simple favor (i.e. directions) and return they put a bracelet on your arm or something similar. You don’t want it but you can’t take it off your arm either, so feel compelled to give that person some money. A variation of this is where someone “finds” a “valuable” watch or bracelet in front of you and tries to sell it to you.

3. Diversion – You get a flat tire and a good Samaritan pulls up to help you. Keep an eye out, his friend might be emptying your luggage. This works in reverse as well, where you are flagged down by someone who needs help. Another diversionary tactic is where someone helps to clean bird poo from your shirt. You wallet might disappear at this point.

4. Overcharge – Taxis are notorious for taking advantage of unsuspecting travellers. If they are on the meter, they will deliberately take longer routes. If they are without a meter they will name atrocious rates.

For more travel tips we also recommend Cheap Hotels Blog. They offer hotel reviews and travel tips.

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