Airbnb and Get Safe Online protect customers from holiday scams
Worldwide: Internet safety website Get Safe Online has partnered with Airbnb to share guidance on how to protect oneself from holiday booking scams in 2023.
When booking a holiday, Get Safe Online advises users:
- Never click on links that you are not expecting – learn how to spot fake emails, websites, texts and social media posts, as bogus links may take you to a fake website designed to look like websites you are familiar with.
- Be wary of unusually cheap deals or high deposits – if a deal or offer seems too good to be true, it could be a scammer and it is best to end all communication immediately.
- If you can, pay by credit card and avoid making bank transfers – paying by credit card often offers better protection, and a higher chance of getting your money back.
When using Airbnb specifically:
- Stay on Airbnb to book, pay and communicate – stays should always be booked and paid for on-platform only to take advantage of Airbnb’s secure processes, refund and support policies. If anyone asks you to go off-platform, you should report it to Airbnb.
- Check out the reviews from other guests – you can see what other guests have said, read the profiles of hosts and listings, and contact the host via Airbnb’s messaging tool to ask any questions before booking.
- Check the site link – before paying online or providing any confidential details, use the Airbnb app or go directly to the website.
- Report issues immediately – Airbnb’s Community Support team is on hand 24/7 to assist and if you think you have been scammed, get in touch with your bank as they may be able to recover your money.
Amanda Cupples, general manager for the UK and Northern Europe at Airbnb, said: “This year, many of us may be eager to save some pennies when booking a holiday, making it an ideal time for scammers to take advantage of those looking to find a good deal. Booking, communicating and paying on Airbnb helps to protect you against scams, and our long-standing partnership with Get Safe Online will help travellers stay alert when planning a well-deserved trip.”
Get Safe Online CEO Tony Neate said: “As the cost of living rises, we want to help protect everyone’s hard-earned cash and urge people to stay alert when it comes to booking a holiday. Trust your instincts and remember, if a deal looks too good to be true, then it probably is.”