Every country has its share of shady characters. We are usually familiar with the scams in our own country, but when we visit a foreign culture there will be a few individuals who will try to prey on our naiveté. Knowing the tricks in advance is a considerable help.
Broken taxi meter – The taxi driver at the airport may claim the meter is broken and then charge an exorbitant amount for a ride. Either agree on the price beforehand or find a taxi with a working meter.
The Closed Hotel – A taxi driver may claim that your hotel is closed or overbooked, and then take you to a hotel that gives him a commission. Avoid this by confirming the hotel booking on arrival. Use the hotel shuttle if possible.
Closed attraction – Some local scammers will try to direct you to a tourist attraction that pays them a commission. Occasionally there is a worthwhile attraction, but if they are pushy and claim that your intended destination is closed then they shouldn’t be trusted.
Free gift – A seemingly friendly local tried to give you a gift, often jewellery, and then asks for payment. Refuse any gift from a stranger.
Accidental Spill – A person will distract you by spilling something on your clothing and then try to pick your pocket.
Fake Police Officers – Individuals posing a police officers will demand Passports and other valuable documents. Sometimes they will work with a civilian who pretends to do illegal business with you (i.e.: drugs).
Tell the fake police officers that your passports are at the hotel. They are unlikely to check this.
Group photos and photo attractions – a local might charge for being in your photo, or charge for a photo of his camel or other possession. Else. They take the photo and run off with your camera/smartphone.
Wi-Fi- Public Wi-Fi is easy to crack. Either have VPN and encryption or avoid public Wi-Fi, especially for financial matters.
Wake-Up-Calls – Any phone call that asks you to confirm financial details is a scam. The scammers will often pose as the hotel reception and ask you to verify your credit card details. Hang up and report to the reception in person.
Avoid hassle and use our shuttle bus to and fro Sydney Airport.