The temptation of easy vacation, of organizing the trip from the comfort of your own home without the intermediation of travel agencies o tour operators affects everyone today.
On the other hand, the proliferation of sites and sector portals has greatly facilitated this type of operation, but has also revealed the classic and proverbial "dark side", the other side of the coin.
If in fact it is true that today it is as easy as ever book a vacation or accommodation online, it is equally true that it is as easy as ever fall victim to a scam.
We heard more or less of everything: houses rented without the owners' knowledge, others even non-existent, accommodations painted like luxury villas which turned out to be little more than shacks.
In short, the catch is just around the corner, but to avoid it just follow some little tips and ... develop your nose!
- 10 tips for safe online travel
- User questions and comments
10 tips for safe online travel
- Be wary of accommodation facilities a bargain prices in the face of beautiful images and photos. It is true, the crisis exists, but the value for money must always be taken into consideration: do not think you have found thedeal of the century, could be "another thing" of the century ...!
- Don't just trust the photos you see posted on the site, or at least, don't let them be enough. Always ask for a few more photos, both of the interiors and exteriors and the surrounding panorama of the accommodation, hotel or structure in general.
- Maybe check that these structures are inserted in main online booking circuits, also making sure of the date of registration; hardly on portals like Booking e TripAdvisor you will find non-existent structures, especially if registered for a long time.
- Make sure of your identity of the owner of the alleged advertisement or offer, asking for name and surname, both mobile and landline telephone numbers, and do some research on the internet; likewise, search on Google Maps the address of the structure and verify that it really exists through Street view or similar services. If in any way he gets around to beating around the bush or wasting time, then your suspicions may be well founded.
- Always check all the extremes before making a online payment. If you are asked to pay by bank transfer, check that the IBAN is from the same country as the owner or agency (just check the first two letters of the code); if not, beware. Where possible, always prefer payment by credit card or bank transfer, methods that guarantee better traceability compared to prepaid cards or other methods.
- Always keep all correspondence via email and / or messages relating to the contract. It is always a form of protection if things go wrong.
- Always ask for a signed contract to have all the data of the owner of the structure or agency.
- Likewise, ask for one copy of the identity document from both sides. If he makes excuses, especially if he uses the most classic of excuses ("I'm traveling abroad at the moment, we'll hear back when I get back"), be wary.
- Do not disclose personal data that are not strictly necessary to conclude the transaction.
- If at the reference telephone number he never answers nobody ... it doesn't need to be said, right?
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