EXPERTS have warned holidaymakers to be on the lookout for several red flags that could them dearly when booking holidays online.

With the cost of travel rising everywhere, finding a deal online can be really difficult, which scammers will try and take advantage of.

Therefore it's always best to be wary about which companies you're booking with and where you found any deals on the internet.

From 2021/22 there alone there were more than 4,244 reports of travel-related fraud in the UK with victims losing an average of £1,868.

Consumer experts at have revealed the five 'red flags' holidaymakers need to look out for when booking a trip online.

Website reviews

It's always good to check hotel reviews on multiple websites, this is because review standards vary from country to country.

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So while it may be listed as a five-star hotel on one website, the truth may be far different.

Hotel owners are also able to dispute low reviews if they've been "unjustly" made, which can make hotel ratings higher than they should be.

Booking websites

Scam travel websites often replicate reputable companies using spoofing tricks.

These include adding or removing an extra letter in the address, or using http:// rather than https:// in the hope that consumers won't notice.

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While most internet browsers are pretty good at informing you when a website is secure, it's always important to double-check.

Make sure to check that the URL is correct by looking out for any misspelt words.

Travel Insurance

According to the consumer experts, it's important to only book travel insurance through reputable – and verified – websites.

If you have booked your travel insurance through a verified website, make sure to read the fine print before making that purchase.

You'll make to make sure everything is covered in case of a worst-case scenario.

Quotes may also be higher if you have pre-existing medical conditions so make sure to fill the form out correctly.

Booking excursions

If you've found your dream holiday experience at a rock-bottom price, then it may just be too good to be true.

As well as lower price points, a lack of a description regarding the excursion is a sign that it may not be legitimate.

Sometimes it's best to book days out through your hotel, or verified websites, or you could end up paying double the price.


For any holidaymaker who needs to book a coach transfer from the airport before they've arrived, it's best to stick to companies that have been verified by the arrival airport or airline.

If you've booked your seat through an illegitimate company, you may be conned out of your money or have to pay over the odds for a brand-new seat at a later date.

John Stirzaker, online consumer expert at added: "Unfortunately, many scammers are using people’s desire for a break as an opportunity to exploit and deceive others out of their hard-earned money.

"This isn’t only devastating to many families who have saved for years to afford the holiday, but it can make them scared to ever book one again in the future."

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Meanwhile, tourists in Rome have warned about a photo scam that they say cost them more than £400.

And this travel influencer revealed another scam involving art forcing tourists to part ways with their money.

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