Fake Calls From Hilton, Marriott and Hyatt Hotels Offer Free Vacation

Crooks Make Calls Claiming to be from Hilton, Hyatt and Marriott Calls: How The Scam Works

Imagine this scenario: The phone rings. You see a local number so you pick up. An automated voice informs you: “Because you’ve been a past customer of the Hilton Hotels –or Marriott or Hyatt– you qualify for a free vacation with our company. Press 1 to hear more”. Tempting, right? Well, beware of this telemarketing trick – it is one of the most common travel scams. How does the scam work?

Watch the video below to see and hear a real conversation caught on tape with the scammer – did you get one of these?

 

 

As a ‘free vacation’ sounds very interesting, you press 1. From there you are connected with an operator who takes the call live and asks if you are over 18. Similar to the Expedia, Air Miles, or WestJet scam, this approach is followed by a series of questions asking for personal information, which unfortunately victims are willing to share.

The operator also puts you through an agent who presents you with the deal, which is available only today! Well, the “deal” is available tomorrow, and the day after, and every day for that matter, for every victim.

No Affiliation With Hilton, Marriott, or Hyatt

This self-called Alejandro asks you to go to a website, Luxury Getaway Group (or any other name), to see the trips the company is offering to Mexico. You are required to pick one so they will throw in a “free” second vacation, which comes with a bunch of unexpected taxes and hidden charges.

If you watched the video above, you noticed that the caller had absolutely nothing to do with Hilton, Marriott, or Hyatt. He is just using their names to get you lured in.

How To Avoid The Free Vacation scam:

Hilton, Hyatt, or Marriott don’t have an automated call outreach, so don’t fall for this scam. Report it. Luxury Getaway Group was criticized to lure customers via these automated calls using other brand names as well, such as WestJet and Expedia. Always do your research when you receive ‘free points’ or vacations via phone or even social media.

Scammers use a technology named Caller ID spoofing to show a local number on your phone when it rings, for a better chance of you picking it up. You can report the scam, fake travel agencies, and their numbers below.

This scam could also have a series of variations that lead to timeshare scams, so watch out.

Since we are talking about travel and scams, also beware of a few others that are making their rounds this week: the Travel Club Membership Scam, the Cancelled Flight Compensation scheme, Vacation Club Scam, and beware of agencies that claim to be legitimate timeshare resale companies.

 

How To Report The Free Vacation scam:

Make your family and friends aware of the Hilton/Marriott/Hyatt Fake Call scam by sharing it on social media using the buttons provided. You can also officially report the scammers to the Federal Trade Commission using the link below:

Report To The FTC Here

 

How To Protect Yourself More:

If you want to be the first to find out the most notorious scams every week, feel free to subscribe to the Scam Detector newsletter here. You’ll receive periodical emails and we promise not to spam. Last but not least, use the Comments section below to expose other scammers.

 

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Lawrence

I received a call from (925) 858-6671. A recorded announcement told me that my name had been pre-selected for a free stay at the Marriot. I immediately felt the number was spoofed to make it look local to me. Quick Google search, known scam. I was amused and pressed 1 for more information. A person, woman I think, with a comically accented voice greeted me and then began her spiel. I couldn’t understand her. She was asian, I think, being half asian myself. She seemed annoyed that I said, “what, I can’t understand you.” She paused for a while then… Read more »

Eddie

Just got a call from this guys telling me that my phone number was selected for a free stay at 5 star Marriott Hotel. I did hang up right way not time to lose with this people. Phone number that called me is 917 862 5819. Careful out there.

Mary

I received a call from a local number, was suspicious but hit 1 anyway. Voice asked if I was over 30 (yes), and if I had a credit card. I said I wasn’t going to give out a credit card number and hung up.

stephan Vigeant

December 8,2014
I receive a call form O 11 …number…in Montreal
(this could have been a friend in France)
the first part of the communication was bad, pretty sure they said Marriot hotel special something. All the rest of the conversation is exactly like the article; My age, if have credit card, do I like Mexico, the second trip being a free cruise. I did ask about Marriot, but they eluded the question. Could not get that I had to pay 1200 US dollar NOW.
We said NO thank you.

Thank you for policing this.

Keeping my money

Thank you for this post. I was just contacted by the Luxury Getaway Group (luxurygetawaygroup.com) group pretending to offer me a free night through a name brand hotel. Once I spoke with an agent the story changed and now the hotel company was just a "sponsor." I was then asked to spend thousands on pre-booking a vacation in which I would still need to sit in on timeshare presentations for. Your post helped validate that this is indeed a questionable company with even more questionable business practices.

Jan

I received a call from a local number, was suspicious but hit 1 anyway. Voice asked if I was over 30 (yes), and if I had a credit card. I said I was unable to share that information. They hung up.

sandy

I just got of the phone with Luxury Getaway VAcations and it did sound too good to be true…but I do understand promotional offers. All the same I researched them while they were on the phone and honestly I couldn’t find much except that you had to prepay $1,100 for 2 vacations (minus air and taxes). So I guess some would go ahead and some would just no. The thing for me is that I often forget I have ‘credits’ and stuff like this and never end up finding the time to use it. Maybe this MAKES you go away… Read more »

Mark J.

I received the same call on December 22, 2014. The offer sounded great 2 5 star vacations I can use in 2 1/2 years. I thought about it and realized my wife has more expensive hand bags in the closet so i figured what the heck. We took them up on the offer. My wife and I just decided which resort we wanted. We chose the Islands of Loreto since we haven´t been there yet. We called to book our reservation. They answered the phone in a timely matter and even offered to get our Airfare at a discounted rate… Read more »

Ken

Whenever I get these calls I always ask if children are allowed at the resort.
The answer is always yes.
Then I say that I can’t go because my parole officer will send me back to prison if I’m around children.

One guy actually laughed out loud and said he’d never heard that one before.

They don’t call back.

Barrie N. Seed

On Jan. 12/15 I was contacted by a "local number offering a 6day/5nite all inclusive vacation @
any Marriot hotel in the Carribean, plus a full
week cruise out of Vancouver any time within the
next 2 1/2 years. The only obligation was a tour
of the hotel facilities, & hopefully be very
impressed & tell all my friends. The cost for this
package was reduced to $799.USD After I made a 50%
deposit, I contacted Luxury Getaway Group for further
info & found Marriot had nothing to do with it. SCAM?

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