We have written this article with the best intentions, we hope this helps people avoid being scammed, especially at a super popular holiday park like Tattershall Lakes!
We’ve put together some tips to try help you try identify a holiday scam before you lose any money ⬇️
🚨 As a rule of thumb, if something seems ‘too good to be true’, it usually is‼️
So, if you’ve been contacted first by someone on Facebook, Instagram (or any other social media platform) offering you a super cheap holiday in a fabulous location (such as Tattershall Lakes 😉) especially if it's in the middle of the school holidays (as those periods are very desirable dates) we would advise 𝘀𝘁𝗲𝗲𝗿𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝘄𝗲𝗹𝗹 𝗰𝗹𝗲𝗮𝗿, especially if they raise suspicious from our tips below.
Top tips to avoid being holiday scammed ⬇️
Did they contact you first after you’ve put a post on a holiday group (𝙈𝙖𝙟𝙤𝙧 𝙧𝙚𝙙 𝙛𝙡𝙖𝙜)🚩Legitimate owners shouldn't be trying to slide into your DM's, this is often a breach of the Facebook group rules, so check the group rules and report them to the group admin, the admin may spot it's a scammer!!
• Has someone directed you towards a business page? If yes that’s a good thing‼️ If they 𝗗𝗼𝗻’𝘁 have a business page that’s definitely a red flag 🚩
Are they a 𝙑𝙚𝙧𝙞𝙛𝙞𝙚𝙙 𝙤𝙬𝙣𝙚𝙧? 😇
Eg are they listed on AirBnb, Booking (.com), Trip Advisor, VRBO?
They don’t have to be listed on all of these OTA’s but if they are listed on at least one they’ll have had to provide ID and proof of ownership to have a listing ✅ definitely a good sign.
𝗜𝗠𝗣𝗢𝗥𝗧𝗔𝗡𝗧 - just because an owner's property is listed on AirBnb etc it doesn’t mean you can’t cut out the ‘middleman’ and save yourself some cash by booking direct with the owner still 😉 slide into their DMs 📲
But if they aren’t on AirBnb etc and they have a business Facebook page ask yourself the following questions ⬇️
• Does the page have a decent following?
• Do they have a website linked to the page?
• If so, does it look professional? e.g. all links/page's work? any obvious spelling or grammar errors?
☎️ Do they have a contact number on the page (landline or mobile or both), if so, does it work when you call it, and can you speak with someone?
📍Do your research and then give them a call on the number provided, are they knowledgeable about the location you’re hoping to book at?
• Do they have a Google business page?
• Do they have reviews on their Facebook page and Google business pages?
🗣 Do followers/fans regularly comment on their social media posts? The same people or multiple different people?
📸 𝗪𝗮𝘁𝗲𝗿 𝗠𝗮𝗿𝗸𝗲𝗱 𝗣𝗵𝗼𝘁𝗼𝘀 - don’t be fooled into thinking someone is legit just because their photos are watermarked‼️ Anyone can take a photo and add some text over it, then add a burner mobile phone number to the watermarked that makes them appear legit.
(🙄 Yes owners watermarking photos can make it harder for a scammer to use that particular photo, but it doesn’t stop scammers using guest photos from Facebook, Instagram etc by simply searching popular #hashtags)
💰Do they insist on payment by bank transfer?
This doesn't necessarily mean they are a scammer but combined with other red flags mentioned above they could well be!
Do your research and be absolutely certain you're confident they are legit before parting with any money.
Do they seem pushy? "you must pay now, I've got other people asking for that date too" let them sell it to someone else then!🚩
Do they offer PayPal and if so, do they insist you paying via ‘friends and family’?
Again, this doesn't necessarily mean they are a scammer, they may just want to avoid unnecessary fees and keep their overheads down. BUT If someone does offer PayPal then simply add the PayPal fees on yourself if the seller mentions about avoiding Paypal fees, it doesn't cost much and you'll be fully protected then and have complete peace of mind. If they are legit the owner shouldn't have an issue with that.
Simply pay the fees yourself which is 2.9% of the amount + £0.30 eg £3.30 per £100, eg a £100 deposit with fees is £103.30 but this will give you full PayPal protection ✅ There's even paypal fee calculators online that you can use to do the math for you (see link below if you don't want to have to take your shoes and socks off to work out the fees 😉)
💳 Credit Cards
The Safest way to book online is via a reputable business with an established website that offers the ability to book online and pay via credit card (credit cards are the safest way to buy anything) as it offers buyer protection ✅Then pay your credit card off straight away to avoid interest charges (if applicable), you’ll still be protected by your credit card company for the purchase even when you've paid it off. This list isn’t exhaustive, but it gives you some examples of things to look for, we hope these tips help people avoid being scammed 👏🏻 Feel free to share ❤️
Oh and if you’re wanting to check if we are legit, please see our business links below 😊 ⬇️
Facebook page: https://m.facebook.com/TattershallLakesMiniBreaks/
Facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1514805655392106/
Google business page reviews: