March 2, 2014
Watch out for Scams
We recently received a warning sent around the hospitality industry, that brings my mind into focus of the numerous Scams I have in the main witnessed first-hand, or I have heard the stories from others the scammers have tried to dupe. I will detail here the latest Scam affecting guests with the hope you are not targeted and later add those scams that shall we say unwanted guests try to pull.
The latest Scam goes something like this, you apparently get a call to your room at an unholy hour in the early hours of the morning purportedly from the front desk informing you “our computer has crashed” and ask for your credit card information they go on to apologise for the inconvenience and offer a 50% discount for your cooperation.
They also add that ‘rather you having to go to the front desk and wait in line with the other guests affected, giving the caller the information over the phone will be quicker.’ Once you do eventually wake it is too late and the scammers have used your credit card to the max. I know you would never fall for such an obvious scam but hey at that ungodly hour and with a few drinks in you from the night before who knows what goes through your mind?
The other side of the coin
The most recent tried scam from guests is whereby a guest will approach the reception late at night and produce a confirmed booking, for a single nights stay from the likes of Agoda or Hostelworld etc. and will then try to brow beat the reception into letting them have a room when the reception cannot find the booking on the system, the scammer is fully aware the booking to be a hoax as they had immediately cancelled the booking once they were able to down load the original confirmation. Not that clever but the scammer is aware that reception staff are taught to except a booking and deal with any irregularities the next day by which time the scammer has checked out.
While the scams listed above are but the tip of the iceberg and they can affect both the guests and hotels/hostel, they are rare in Hostels as the room/bed costs are relatively low and not worth the risk. More on scams to watch for here in Thailand in future blogs.
Do remember to have your wits about you it can be a jungle out there! lol