Scammers take advantage of soaring rental car prices

MADISON (WKOW) – As things start to look more normal in the United States, some people may be eager to take summer trips, but their enthusiasm could make them easy prey for crooks. This excitement, coupled with soaring car rental prices, can make people so desperate to get a good deal quickly that they can’t question it.

“They know consumers are traveling and are ready to go on vacation somewhere, it’s been a long year, a year and a half,” said Tiffany Schultz of the Better Business Bureau. “What better way than to develop a scam where a consumer wants to go so badly, and they’ll be willing to pay the price for this special deal that the scammer is offering?”

Scammers create fake websites and sponsored ads with car rental deals, but to get their special price you have to pay by prepaid debit card or gift card. Once the scammer has the first card, they will try to rip you off again by saying that the card is not working and the consumer needs to buy another one.

“It can go on multiple times,” Schultz said. “So every time you give them that information, they take the funds out of those cards and it’s a vicious cycle for a rental car that doesn’t exist.”

She said the crooks also did this with thefts.

To avoid getting ripped off, Schultz suggests going directly to a company’s website to book a rental, or calling the official number to book through its customer service line.

“If it sounds too good to be true, it’s probably too good to be true,” Schultz said.


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