Skip to main content
126 votes

Friend needs help in Turkey

Most likely the person you're communicating with is not actually your friend, and is trying to scam you. This scenario, where a friend is overseas, has had everything stolen, and needs you to wire ...
Kyralessa's user avatar
  • 3,965
125 votes

How to escape hip-hop CD giveaway scam in New York City?

Tell them you don't have a CD player; it's 2017. Don't make eye contact and keep walking.
Nick's user avatar
  • 1,187
120 votes

How to escape hip-hop CD giveaway scam in New York City?

If you have a cell phone, take it out and call 911. When the operator answers, say "I am being harassed by an unlicensed peddler." At this point, they will likely disappear. In case you ...
phoog's user avatar
  • 135k
112 votes

Is it possible that the return ticket of a round-trip is counterfeit?

Anything is possible, of course, but it is overwhelmingly, vastly, immensely more likely that this is a scam, and that the source of this email or message is not actually your daughter-in-law, but ...
DavidRecallsMonica's user avatar
106 votes

Can Customs make me go back to return my electronic equipment or is it a scam?

No, the Customs cannot make you go back, and return the equipment. What the Customs can do is one of the following: Let you in with the item, optionally after duty is paid, if required. If you don't ...
George Y.'s user avatar
  • 22k
99 votes

Working in the USA for living expenses only; allowed on VWP?

As a technical matter, your niece as a UK citizen can enter the U.S. under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP); the ESTA is an authorization for the bearer to attempt to enter under the VWP. VWP visitors ...
choster's user avatar
  • 43.1k
92 votes
Accepted

How to get rid of the men who ask for money in Milan?

Answer by a local here. I work 200 meters from Duomo of Milan, so I find them at the underground exit every morning. First and foremost, remember that most of the people doing this are pushed by a ...
Anon's user avatar
  • 1,238
92 votes

Payment instructions allegedly from HomeAway look fishy to me

Just looking at the domain name: homeaway-eu.com - registered in 2018 registrar: NAMECHEAP INC registered by: information hidden email account hosted by: privateemail.com (which is a product of ...
kiradotee's user avatar
  • 2,824
90 votes

How can I check if this airline ticket is genuine?

This is a scam, 1000% All Boeing 747s have been retired back in 2020 from the BA Fleet The times are different on the same page (see the 07:40 arrival and the 00:15 arrival) The departure time from ...
Nicolas Formichella's user avatar
89 votes

Large cash requirement (2700 USD) for Russian citizens to fly to the US?

I'm very sad to say that this has all the signs of a classic romance scam. How do you know this person? Have you ever met? We've seen several questions with the similar pattern. Here are some ...
Zach Lipton's user avatar
  • 86.3k
85 votes

Does a Ghana citizen need $3000 in hand to travel to the USA?

No, this is a well-known scam. It is absolutely characteristic of this type of criminal fraud that the fraudster invents a series of reasons to send them money - usually by wire-transfer or similar ...
RedGrittyBrick's user avatar
85 votes
Accepted

My online friend is asking for money in order to visit my home country. Is this a legit request or a scam?

The first rule for every such question is simple: If you have to ask, it's probably a scam While we cannot possibly examine every possible situation from every angle, online scams are simply far too ...
85 votes
Accepted

While on vacation my taxi took a longer route, possibly to scam me out of money. How can I deal with this?

Use an app. Virtually everywhere these days has either Uber/ Lyft/ Grab/ Gojek/ Ola/ Didi/ Yandex/ Careem /local clone ride-sharing service, or an app put out by local taxi companies in an attempt to ...
lambshaanxy's user avatar
  • 99.7k
80 votes
Accepted

How to escape hip-hop CD giveaway scam in New York City?

A few things: Avoid making eye contact with them. Nothing will make them come up to you more aggressively than eye contact. You've seen them, they saw you see them, and they know it's a lot harder ...
Schrodinger'sStat's user avatar
78 votes

Can Customs make me go back to return my electronic equipment or is it a scam?

To recap, with thanks to many commenters, there are a number of suspicious factors in this question: Nigeria - a country well known for scams of this type. Not that there aren't many legitimate ...
Zach Lipton's user avatar
  • 86.3k
70 votes

Can Customs make me go back to return my electronic equipment or is it a scam?

I don't want to worry or scare you, but— no, actually I do. I need to. You must be open-minded and clear about this, because the situation is incredibly suspicious. Let's sum up what we know so ...
Lightness Races in Orbit's user avatar
66 votes
Accepted

How can I tell if this Polish villa for rent is a scam?

It is VERY popular in Poland that you book accommodation directly with the landlord via email or a phone. Most of so called "private accommodation" (kwatery prywatne) are not listed on booking.com or ...
Kamil Mikolajczyk's user avatar
66 votes

Is it risky to send a copy of my Passport to someone I only know online?

Do NOT continue speaking to this man, for your own safety! It's clear that you feel lonely and desperate for intimate companionship, and that's who these people target. This man may either keep you ...
Crazydre's user avatar
  • 77.4k
66 votes

How to react if a friend is arrested in Yemen (or claims to be)?

This might be a very common type of scam. You meet someone online, you chat, you form an emotional attachment, and then 'disaster strikes' and your friend suddenly needs money from you. There may be a ...
o.m.'s user avatar
  • 37.2k
65 votes
Accepted

Why do people in the Marrakech Medina say "That way is closed"?

You are spot-on: the purpose is to mislead and confuse tourists. The "don't go that way, it's closed" technique is a common "scam" you will witness in those Moroccan cities which are commonly targeted ...
JoErNanO's user avatar
  • 52.7k
65 votes

How to get rid of the men who ask for money in Milan?

You have to be assertive, just say NO! (or BASTA! or any other local equivalent ) loud and direct. That is how most locals deal with them. Don't interact with them, don't engage; turn/move away. If ...
Max's user avatar
  • 14.7k
65 votes

Payment instructions allegedly from HomeAway look fishy to me

This is a scam. There are several red flags. With one of them, I'd be highly suspicious. With the trifecta, it's definitely a scam. Using a slightly different domain name which is one of many ...
Gilles 'SO- stop being evil''s user avatar
64 votes

US Embassy in Nigeria told me to pay them for my flight when applying for visa, however my visa was denied. Will they refund me my flight money back?

US Embassy in Nigeria told me to pay them for my flight when applying for Visa, however my visa was denied. Will they refund me my flight money back? ... but I gave the clerk flight money as well. ...
Mark Johnson's user avatar
  • 29.7k
59 votes
Accepted

How should a traveller report that his/her (reserved) accommodation is refused by the proprietor on booking.com?

This is probably some sort of scam, though probably a mild one. First check that the person who contacted you knows the details of your accommodation. If so they probably are the property owner. The ...
DJClayworth's user avatar
  • 67.3k
58 votes

How does the taxi scam work at Luohu station in Shenzhen?

It happens that I am a native of Shenzhen, and indeed we avoid those "illicit vehicles" (or "black cabs", hei che 黑车 in Chinese) at all costs. The perceived risk is that they might demand exorbitant ...
xuq01's user avatar
  • 10.1k
55 votes

How can I prove an airline ticket is fake?

For starters, that's not a picture of an airline ticket! It's a boarding pass of the sort that is printed and given to the passenger no more than a few hours before the flight. That document, if it ...
phoog's user avatar
  • 135k
54 votes

Does a verified US citizen need a police & medical report to return from Ghana?

First off I believe you are being scammed. Being Ghanaian and American, having had extensive interactions with the American Embassy in Accra, and having lived in Ghana for decades, I have some ...
Augustine of Hippo's user avatar
52 votes

How to escape hip-hop CD giveaway scam in New York City?

Related to the string bracelets in Europe ... What's the deal with the "string people" in central Paris? Be assertive and just say NO (be as polite as possible) and be on you way. Do ...
Max's user avatar
  • 14.7k
52 votes

Visitor requesting a cash advance to purchase airfare in-country. Legitimate or scam?

In a nutshell — scam. US embassy in Ukraine wouldn’t care who paid for flights tickets or if she even has fully booked flight tickets at the time of visa application. From personal experience ...
Rarst's user avatar
  • 1,476

Only top scored, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible