· Watch out for the too-good-to-be-true offers like free trips or low-prices. Most of these require immediate purchases to lock in prices. Read the fine print. There may be hidden fees. Also, be cautious of unsolicited offers.
· Get everything in writing, including total costs and restrictions. Check the terms regarding changing dates or canceling. Also, check to make sure you have a confirmation email, which includes where you’re staying and the phone number. Call to confirm your reservations before you leave.
· Ask questions about how the trip will operate. If your questions aren’t answered, don’t use the company.
· Use a credit card. It’s easier to dispute fraudulent activity with credit card companies to get a refund. Don’t use prepaid debit cards or wire money because these are like spending cash. Once it’s spent, there’s no way to get it back. Also, let your credit card company know you’re going on vacation, so they don’t flag your account.
· Consider travel insurance. This will cover any medical emergencies or having to cancel your trip.
· Let a family member, close friend or neighbor know your travel plans.
· Don’t post to social media while you’re gone. If you do post, it lets burglars know no one is home.
For more information, visit BBB.org or call 937-222-5825 or 800-776-5301. The BBB can provide you with a list of BBB accredited businesses in the travel industry and Business Profiles on ones you’re considering. You can also report travel scams to BBB.org/scamtracker.