Consumer Tip of the Day: Watch out for Hotel Scams

Your daily money bite

The summer travel season might mean fun in the sun and dipping a toe or two in the pool, but you still need to be mindful of your finances. Some scammers are taking advantage of unsuspecting hotel guests. Don’t become one of them.

The Federal Trade Commission published a warning on its site, letting travelers know about three common hotel scams.

1. A mysterious call from the front desk: If your room phone rings and someone claiming to be from the hotel’s front desk says there’s a problem with your credit card and you need to give your credit card number to them again, be on high alert. The FTC says you should hang up, call the operator, and ask if there’s a problem. “Don’t reveal your number over the phone. Just walk back to the front desk,” says the FTC.

2. The pizza delivery flyer: If you find a pizza delivery flyer under your hotel door, double-check the phone number on the flyer before you place an order to make sure it is a legitimate business. The FTC says there have been instances where a hotel patron calls the fake pizza shop, gives out their credit card number, and then has their financial information compromised.

3. The fake Wi-Fi network. Be very careful about which WiFi networks you use, even if it has the hotel’s name. The FTC says some networks are unrelated to the hotel it claims to be linked to. Using a network like this can give a fraudster access to your information. Always check with the hotel to make certain you’re using the authorized network.

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