Beware Of This Very Popular Hotel Scam

Hotel Neon Sign

Beware of This Very Common Hotel Scam

I recently received an email from a friend of mine who knew I was interested in writing about Travel Scams. He sent me this increasingly popular scam that is known around the globe as the Hotel Scam. It seems that if crooks can find the slightest angle to catch innocent victims off guard, they will. Here’s how this scam works …

You have just arrived at your travel destination and make your way to your chosen hotel and check in at the front desk as usual.

Normally when checking in, the person at the front desk asks for your credit card.

A World Wide Hotel Scam

Hotel Front Desk Clerk

This is standard practice and confirms payment and takes care of any additional charges that may be added to your room during your stay. Without a second thought, you proceed to your room and settle in. The hotel reception then receives a call from a person asking for a specific hotel room.

For example purposes, let’s say it’s your room number 588. The reception transfers the call to your room and you answer the call. This is where the scam begins and the person on the other end says to you …

“Hello, this is the front desk. After you checked in, we have unfortunately experienced a difficulty with your credit card we have on file. The card is not showing verified. Would you be kind enough to give me your credit card numbers again and also verify the last 3 digits numbers on the reverse side of your card for me once again? I am terribly sorry for the inconvenience.”

Without giving this a second thought and perhaps being tired from travel, you pass on the information requested to the caller believing that the person is in fact from the hotel front desk.


You have just been scammed and the unknown caller now has your credit card information and can begin to make purchases or whatever they choose to do with your card. Many will call the front desk and even be able to get your name before making the call to your room.

credit cards

As we are beginning to realize more and more each year, one must never give out their personal information either over the phone, internet or any other form of communication, without being able to verify who that person or business is beforehand.

A lesson I learned a while back was never to click on an email link or attachment file unless you are absolutely sure who it has come from!

Even that can be dangerous at times with ‘phishing’ emails surfacing regularly.

How to Prevent Becoming a Victim of this Hotel Scam

Hotel Scam

Should you ever come upon this type of situation during your hotel stay or any other similar scenario, immediately advise the caller that you will attend to the front desk to deal with the matter in person and not over the phone.

You should head straight for the front desk to clear the matter and confirm the call with them.

If there was no request made over the phone, the manager of the hotel should be advised that someone has just tried to scam you of your credit card information. Inform them of the details of the call so they can act accordingly to prevent any further similar type calls.

These scammer’s will always try to catch people off guard when they are most vulnerable. It is very easy to slip up, especially after a long day of travel when you are tired and not as alert to these types of situations occurring. Just a reminder once again, to always be sure who you are giving your personal information to anywhere and at any time!

Safe travels!

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