Internet scams trick vacationers with fake rentals

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 25, 2011 1:55 PM GMT
    There were stories about these scams in the local Key West paper when we were down there last weekend. And now I read the same thing about Fort Lauderdale.

    Don't know how many guys here would book vacation rentals of private properties, but beware of online scams. Most often done with vacationers from outside the US, there is little ability for US authorities to prosecute the perpetrators. Innocent vacationers pay the rental fee online and travel to the US, and show up at private homes thinking they've rented the place, only to have the real owner say they've been scammed.
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    Dec 25, 2011 3:09 PM GMT
    So far, all the non-US guys I know stay with local friends here, or in a resort or hostel...haven't heard of anyone being scammed...yet. But I'll definitely let some of them know about this in case their normal spot is unavailable.
  • sloughwest

    Posts: 210

    Dec 25, 2011 10:36 PM GMT
    It's amazing how many people trust online booking, yes in the main they are OK, but never wire money through someone like western union. Working for a courier company we are constantly bombarded with people saying that they have wired their deposit to us for holding and where are the keys to view the property, to which the same reply goes out - that we never hold money on behalf of customers or accept western union wire transfers.

    Always do as much research about any rental company / individual you can before sending a deposit, and preferably only give a deposit on arrival!