Travel scams costing holidaymakers £15m

The national centre for fraud and cybercrime, Action Fraud is warning holidaymakers to be extra wary of travel scams.

Its latest data for the last financial year showed 6,457 reports of holiday fraud, amounting to over £15m scammed.

Travel scam victims reported losing a total of £15.3m, a 41% increase.

It amounts to an average loss of £2,372 per victim.

From May – August alone, more than £4.6m was lost.

Action Fraud has launched a national awareness campaign to urge the public to think twice before booking a holiday.

Pauline Smith, Head of Action Fraud, said: “With summer around the corner, we enter a period where fraudsters ramp up efforts to catch out unsuspecting members of the public”.

“Scammers prey on people wanting to find a good deal, people are willing to snap up a deal which sometimes comes at a heavy cost.”

“When booking a holiday here or abroad, it’s important to do your research before handing over any money.”

The data dispels the myth than older people are more vulnerable to scammers.

People in their 20s and 40s accounted for 44% of all reports.

Anna Bowles, Head of Consumers and Enforcement at the CAA, said: “Make sure you limit your risk. Make sure you research the company you’re booking.”

The top holiday fraud hotspots in the UK include London, West Midlands, Greater Manchester and Thames Valley.

The most frequent frauds are clone comparison websites, airline websites and holiday websites.

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