It isn’t your imagination. We’ve been talking about scams a lot, including this week’s Newsweek exposé on travel fraud, my Mint.com post on what I call “uppercase” holiday scams and the eternal question: Is this a scam? The reason? My new book, Scammed: How to Save Money and Find Better Service in a World of Schemes, Swindles, and Shady Deals is only days away from being published. You can order your copy right here.
Win a weekend rental from Hertz! Tell me about the worst scam you’ve ever fallen for — or almost fallen for — and you could win a weekend certificate for a midsize car rental from Hertz. (And no, it’s not a scam.) The rules are simple: Between now and the next newsletter on Tuesday morning, send me your true story of being scammed on anything — not just travel — and we’ll vote on the finalists right here. Runner-ups will get a free copy of my new book. Send me an email with your worst scam now.
The Expedia ticket vouchers that never existed
When Joseph Barclay cancels his flight to Paraguay, his online travel agency issues a voucher that can be used within a year. But now the company claims there is no voucher. Is the money lost?
The 10 worst travel scams ever
Ever had the sense that the gold ring you bought from a street vendor may be a few karats short of the real thing, or that the cabdriver who claims his meter is broken has overcharged you? If so, you wouldn’t be alone.
Bad Santa! 3 Perfectly Legitimate Holiday Scams To Watch For
The fake Santas and the fraudsters with empty gas cans are relatively easy to spot, as I mentioned last week. But what about the businesses that scam you “legally”? Oh, they’re out there.
No damage to rental car, but they called a collection agency anyway
Richard Hartman rented a car from Alamo in Montreal this summer. It’s a decision he regrets. Find out how his case ends. Read more.
Ridiculous or not? Form letters that fail
I’ve waged a long and lonely campaign against mindless form letters sent to customers by uncaring corporations. It looks like I’m not alone. Read more.
What’s your problem? A slippery component that destroyed my PC
While Andre Klass is installing a computer, the chassis malfunctions, damaging the custom PC. Neither the reseller nor the manufacturer will take responsibility. Where, exactly, does the buck stop? Read more on On Your Side.
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(Photo: Chiara Ab bate/Flickr)