When visiting East Africa you will need to have enough funds to cater for all your needs. You will be paying for your accommodation, meals, travels, and everything else you’ll need during your stay. Unfortunately, there are people that see you as their solution to all their needs and will do anything to get your money.
Here are some of the common scams that people who want to steal from you will use:
1. Making false hotel wakeup calls
When in your hotel, you may receive a call where the caller claims to be the front desk operator at the hotel at odd hours, mostly at night. The person will lie to you that they are calling to verify your credit card details and that you should submit them immediately. Most of the time, this is not a genuine caller but a scammer seeking to get your credit details so that he can steal from you.
If this happens, do not disclose any details. Instead, inform the caller that you’ll sort out the issue in the morning personally. If indeed it was the front office, they’ll have the courtesy to wait until daybreak to get the details they wanted from you.
2. Avoid flirtatious women
When you get to your destination, it is possible to see some beautiful women paying too much attention to you. The women may even offer to take you out for a drink or even a dance which is quite tempting. Do not fall for them! Most of these women will go out with you and after taking their fill, they will disappear leaving you to pay the huge bills. They could even drug you and rob you in collaboration with a gang that works together with them.
To stay safe and keep your money and other possessions safe, do not pay any attention to a woman who is hitting on you. If you must go out, get a good company as the woman will have minimal chances of stealing from you when you have company.
3. Do not buy travel tickets from unknown sources
In an effort to spend less on your travels, you may ask your taxi driver to recommend a place where you can get affordable bus, plane or train tickets. If he is fraudulent, he may mislead you and you end up getting fake tickets and when you present them for your travel, they will get rejected. To stay safe, always ensure that you buy your tickets at the designated offices or online where you’ll be assured of getting the right ticket.
4. Stay away from friendly ATM helpers
When planning to withdraw money from a local ATM, you may find some people who’ll offer to help you get a better deal and avoid high bank charges. Do not fall for these tricks as these people will scan your card using a card skimmer and immediately you enter your pin, they will take note. You’ll receive the shock of your life when a few hours later, you’ll have huge sums of money missing from your account.