‘Stay safe!’ Lloyds Bank issues scam warning as Britons lose nearly £3,000

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The bank reports that scams linked to holidays rose by 33 percent over the last year, according to new fraud analysis. Fraud relating to flight bookings rose by 13 percent in the 12 months to March 2022 with the average amount lost to a flight scam was £2,955, nearly £3,000. On top of this, scams associated with fake caravan bookings have more than doubled in the last 12 months.

Scam reports which were linked to hotels increased by 18 percent, with the average amount lost £1,231.

Furthermore, packaged holiday-style scams rose by 17 percent, with those affected losing £2,342 on average.

Overall, the biggest increase came from scams linked to fake caravan bookings, which include short caravan stays rather than purchasing a whole caravan.

These examples of scams went up by a massive 108 percent year-on-year. Despite this, the average amount lost in each case was much lower though at £374.

READ MORE: Woman, 88, in tears after losing £36,000 savings – after ‘scrimping’ for 50 years

Liz Ziegler, the fraud prevention director at Lloyds Bank, outlined the dangers facing many holidaymakers in the coming months.

Ms Ziegler explained: “Now that most pandemic restrictions have come to an end, many of us will be looking forward to a more traditional summer holiday this year.

“But with demand soaring and prices rising fast, would-be holidaymakers can’t afford to let their guard down when hunting for the best deals.

“Scammers are ready to cash in on any last minute surge in bookings, so it’s vital that consumers know how to stay safe.

“Book directly with trusted sites or travel agents, avoid following links on social media, and always pay by card for the greatest protection.

“Remember, if it looks too good to be true, it almost certainly is.”

On its website, Lloyds has shared advice to those who are booking holidays on what to look out for when avoiding scams.

The bank stated: “Great deals don’t find you. Fraudsters put adverts for fake holidays on social media and the internet.

“They can also send an offer by email or text pretending to be from a real company. Often, a deal will look much cheaper than those you can find elsewhere.”

On top of this, the financial institution encourages those booking any trips to make sure the companies they are dealing with are “genuine”.

Lloyds added: “Make sure it’s genuine. Book a holiday with a company that is ABTA or ATOL protected. Take your time to make sure an offer is genuine before you choose to buy.

“Look for reviews from different customers and find a company that has lots of good reviews rather than bad ones or no reviews at all.”

Furthermore, The bank explained: “Protect how you pay: The safest way to pay for a holiday is to use your debit or credit card.

“If a site or company wants you to pay another way, such as direct to a bank account or by wire transfer, it could be a scam.

“If you pay this way and things go wrong, you may not get your money back.”

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