Travel scams are becoming more and more common as tourism industries around the world continue to boom. Con artists are becoming smarter and smarter, and a lot more travellers are falling victim to their tricks.
Here are a few common scams and how you can avoid them:
The "broken taxi meter"
This is one of the simplest scams, and also one of the most common. Taxi drivers try this trick all around the world. The key is to check and inquire with the taxi driver beforehand and make sure that the meter is indeed working. If it isn't, try and discuss a rate that you find appropriate with the driver and if he doesn't agree, just find another taxi.
It's practically impossible to distinguish between a legitimate street beggar, and one who is either trying to rob you or con you. Many of them are usually pregnant, accompanied by small children or disabled, which often does wonders in disarming through compassion so that you let your guard down. Unsuspecting victims will either get robbed or pickpocketed. To avoid this, simply do not allow yourself to get drawn to beggars or, if you must, be extremely vigilant.
Helpful locals at the ATM
This is a particularly easy scam to fall for when you're on your travels in a foreign place. Criminals are increasingly resorting to credit card skimming, which is "a type of credit card theft where thieves steal your card information then sell it or use it to make fraudulent purchases". Simply never allow a stranger to help you out at an ATM, no matter what!