7 Tips and Solutions to Avoid Online Flight Ticket Scams
Quick Guide To Purchase Airline Tickets In A Safer Way
Travel is a thriving, exciting, and life-changing experience. However, our excitement can easily turn into anxiety if we became victims of online flight ticketing scams. According to the American Hotel and Lodging Association, more than 15 million online flight ticket scams occur every year.
That number is considerable. Though booking a flight ticket has just become a matter of seconds, some unethical people are just making this process more unsecured. For certain travellers, such scams are nothing but nightmares that need to be avoided. Do you know some practical tips to prevent such fraud?
If not, stick to the end of this article as we are going to discuss the tips and solutions to avoid online flight ticket scams.
1. Avoid Free Airline Tickets
One of the most common scams that travellers are currently facing is perpetrated through free flight tickets. This scam makes travellers think that they will get a complimentary flight ticket. in reality, this free ticket does not exist.
This type of scam is mainly faced by people using social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. Certain Facebook pages advertise these free online tickets as promotional campaigns from the airline companies. As users don't know the reality, they click on such ads.
When this happens, people are redirected to the page where they have to enter their e-mail id, password, credit card details, etc. And if someone enters all the personal information, then, he or she may likely to get scammed.
Photo source: 13abc
You may be thinking on which Facebook pages should I believe? Well, airlines sometimes run contests to give free online tickets. But they don't ask you for your passwords or bank details. Also, Facebook designates the official pages of the airlines with a blue tick mark.
If you saw such scams on Facebook or Twitter, you can report this fraud to the respective social media networks. Facebook has stringent rules against such issues.
So, you can rely on the pages with the blue tick mark and then, can enter your e-mail id if you saw an ad which is run by them.
2. Fake Booking Sites
There are thousands of hotels and flight booking sites. Some of them are authentic, while others are not.
Travellers often like to compare the airfare prices of different airlines. So, people search on the internet about airline flight ticket comparisons, and after that, they find various flight booking sites.
On such sites, travellers get exclusive deals on the airline tickets. But the fake websites, ask you to enter your credit card details to get the special deal or discount on the airline tickets.
Generally, such sites are nothing but fishing sites that are interested in getting the credit card details of the users.
How to identify such fake sites?
Such sites can be easily identified as they may not have an SSL certificate installed on their website and mostly, real flight comparison sites never ask your credit card details.
We recommend you to use the tools like Faremart, Kiwi, Skyscanner and other various online tools to find the cheap flights.
3. Spam Emails
Many travellers have reported an issue where they received a spam e-mail that suggests them to confirm the airline ticket.
The airlines have their professional e-mail addresses from which they send the flight confirmation e-mails to their customers, but fraudsters send such e-mails to the travellers via a fake e-mail address.
So, when you confirm your ticket by clicking on such fake e-mails, you will get redirected to the dummy site which looks like airlines official website. There you may be asked to confirm Passenger Name Record (PNR).
Photo source: abc7ny
Once you do that, they can hijack your ticket within seconds.
So, always see the mail address from which you are getting such e-mails. Also, you should not click on the links inside the fake e-mails.
Don't share your ATM card with anyone else and if your ATM is linked with your mobile device then, you will get an instant message whenever someone tries to process an unauthorized transaction through your card.
4. Consider the Currency Exchange Rates:
Most travellers are not aware of the currency exchange rates. And while travelling internationally, you may experience that more money is deducted from your account than the actual flight ticket.
So, always convert the price given on any site into your local currency. This will give you an idea about the currency exchange rates.
This fraud can be seen while booking a hotel from different hotel booking sites. So, always make sure that you are on the authority site and be aware of the currency exchange rates.
5. Fake Ads:
Room sharing sites like Airbnb offer exclusive deals to travellers. But some scammers will advertise house rentals that are cheaper than these sites.
Generally, they target traveller seeking special discount through Craigslist ads or Facebook ads.
Here, the culprit will take your money and will send you the location details where you can live.
But, once you make your payment then while looking for your room, you will notice the location given to you does not exist, or the owner of the house is a fake person.
Photo source: alaskaair
You can avoid such scams by using excellent and legit room sharing sites like Airbnb, VRBO, etc.
Also, don't do any home rental deals via social media platforms.
6. Read the Refund Policies
There are a few times where you have to read the refund policies on the online flight booking sites.
Suppose that sites offer only 14 days money back guarantee and have stringent rules regarding the refunds. Then, it will be tough for you to get your money back.
If this problem happens with you, then you can contact PayPal or your credit card company.
If the payment is made through PayPal, then there are chances that you will get your money back. PayPal helps buyers, and it will help you in getting your refund.
Also, some companies may not allow you to cancel a flight.
So, it is essential for travellers to read all the rules about the ticket booking and cancellation process.
7. Contact Trusted Travel Agents:
If you are worried about the online scams and wanted to book your flight ticket most safely, then, travel agents can help you in the best way. But make sure that you are in contact with the trusted travel agent.
Travel agents can help you in the entire process of booking your flight ticket, and they often help you in getting the best available deal.
But the drawback of the travel agents is that 70% of them can charge you big bucks. But, if you have an established relationship with the travel agent then, you don't have to take any tension.
Thus, above are some tips and techniques that can help you in not getting scammed while booking a flight ticket.
Even though you get scammed, try to remain calm and relaxed. Because in those situations keeping your mind free can help you in coming out of the issue. You can contact the local police if you become the victim of the online flight ticket scams.
Thanks for reading this article. Let us know below your thoughts regarding the online airline ticket frauds and how we can stop them.