Portugal is currently the only major viable tourist destination on the green list.
However, it is hoped that popular summer hot spots such as Spain, France, Italy and Greece will soon be removed from the orange list.
But vacationers are warned by Action Fraud of a new scam, which could ruin your plans.
Figures show that nearly a third of those affected by holiday fraud are duped by a social media ad, with Facebook being the most common platform people have been targeted on, BirminghamLive reports.
Others were deceived by a fake website that looked like the real thing.
Some people targeted by scams find they have been scammed upon arrival at the airport and cannot check in.
Action Fraud, the national fraud and cybercrime reporting center, asks people to be vigilant when tempted to organize vacations.
Pauline Smith, Head of Fraud Action, said: “We are all more eager than ever to go on vacation and relax with our family and friends, following the coronavirus pandemic. However, criminals will stop at nothing when it comes to defrauding the innocent. a well-deserved break and their hard-earned money.
“Criminals are increasingly using more sophisticated means to deceive their victims, which is why it is important that we do all of our research when booking vacations and making travel arrangements.
“Whether you’re planning to travel overseas or take a home vacation this year, remember that if an offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is. “
Ms Smith said even in the previous fiscal year from April 2020 to April 2021 – when the UK was locked down or subject to tiered restrictions and travel was severely restricted – the crooks managed to cheat people over £ 2.2million, an average loss of £ 1,242. per victim.
The numbers show that most of the scams involved fake airline ticket reservations. The majority of victims were between 19 and 50 years old (73%).
Almost a third (32%) of reports indicate that the victim had contact with the suspect after responding to an approach or advertisement on a social media platform. Among these reports, Facebook was the most common platform (62%) where victims were defrauded.
Online booking platforms, such as Airbnb and Booking.com, were mentioned in almost 10% of reports.
Some victims (7%) have been duped by fake websites masquerading as legitimate travel companies.
There are others on current affairs, politics, court news, Knowsley, Wirral, arts and culture, as well as Liverpool FC and Everton FC.
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The victims had searched online for airline tickets and found a website they believed to be the company’s real website. In other cases, victims have used what they believe to be a genuine flight comparison site to search for thefts.
In these cases, the victims said they were contacted by someone claiming to be from the airline or flight comparison website to walk them through the booking process and accept payment.
Top tip to avoid fraud while on vacation
- Stay Safe Online: Check that the web address is legitimate and has not been changed by slight changes to a domain name, such as changing from .co.uk to .org.
- Do your research: don’t just rely on one review – do a thorough online research to make sure the business is credible. If a business is defrauding people, chances are consumers will post details about their experience and disclaimers about the business.
- Look for the logo: Check if the company is a member of ABTA. Look for the ABTA logo on the company’s website. If you have any doubts, you can check ABTA membership online on their website. If you are booking a flight and want more information about ATOL protection, or if you want to check if a company is an ATOL holder, visit the CAA website.
- Pay securely: where possible, pay by credit card. You should avoid paying directly to an individual’s bank account.
- Check the paperwork: you should study receipts, invoices and terms and conditions, and beware of companies that do not provide them at all. When booking through a Holiday Club or timeshare, have the contract checked by a lawyer before signing up.
- Use your instincts: if a deal sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
If you believe you have been a victim of fraud, contact your bank immediately and report it to Action Fraud online at actionfraud.police.uk or by calling 0300 123 2040.