Scams target travellers’ FOMO and bargain hunters

Woman in front of Eiffel Tower. | Newsreel
International travellers are being urged to watch out for scams while planning overseas trips. | Photo: William 87 (iStock)

With the Paris Olympics and northern hemisphere summer luring Aussie overseas, travellers are being warned about the scams targeting international tourists.

NAB data shows that one in three Australians are saving for a holiday, with overseas sporting events and concerts on wish lists.

NAB Executive Group Investigations Chris Sheehan said the top three scams travellers should watch out for when heading overseas were accommodation or booking website impersonation scams, ticket scams for major events and overcharging or wrong charge scams.

“We know these three scams are happening overseas. Just like you’d plan visas and check the weather at your destination, it’s also vital to be aware of common scams in the countries you’re visiting so you can recognise the red flags and protect yourself,” Mr Sheehan said.

He said data from NAB Economics found a third of Australians are saving money for a holiday.

“While the cost of living remains a concern for many, we know Australians have spent months making smarter spending and saving decisions so they can prioritise travelling this year.

“For some it will be a bucket list trip like cheering the Green and Gold on in Paris.”

Mr Sheehan, a former Australian Federal Police executive, said travel scams tapped into emotions including fear of missing out, tiredness and excitement, which could be heightened in an unfamiliar environment or if people were really focused on looking for a bargain or managing a budget.

“The pressure to act now is a red flag in ticket and accommodation scams, while overcharging or wrong charging scams play on distraction and a lack of detail,” he said.

“Letting your bank know where and when you’re travelling can help with more accurately monitoring your transactions for suspicious activity while you’re away.”

Learn more about the scams and the red flags to watch out for.