Travel Scams from Elsewhere: Improvisation in India ?

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#1 Sep 26th, 2011, 14:36
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#1
I have liked Rick Steve's European Video, and also his famous one and half hour talk on Travel as Political Act. He had an article on how to avoid scams in Europe. Many of the things could occur with Improv in India too. (except the stripping )

Quote:
Just because someone looks official doesn't mean they are.

The sneakiest pickpockets look like well-dressed businessmen, generally with something official-looking in their hand.
Rick Steve on how to avoid travel scams
#2 Sep 26th, 2011, 14:53
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#2
But, sometimes a respectably dressed imposter can be most helpful, especially if one ends up on the wrong side of the law (inadvertantly)..
#3 Oct 25th, 2011, 06:14
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#3
Here is another list, albeit dated.
Essentially if you keep current with http://www.scambusters.org/ you are bound to be trouble free in India, as scammers in India are amateur league in many respects.
#4 Oct 25th, 2011, 11:05
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It's true that the subtle approach is not generally their forte here. Unfortunately they try to compensate through perseverance for what they lack in finesse. Consider anyone who approaches you on the street as the enemy unless proven different. Sounds harsh but you'll be amazed how much time/aggravation it saves you.
"It is preferable to have a criminal for a servant rather than a fool because a criminal's actions are predictable and you can protect yourself against them, whereas there is no telling what a fool's next move will be.
#5 Oct 25th, 2011, 12:01
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dillichaat View Post It's true that the subtle approach is not generally their forte here. Unfortunately they try to compensate through perseverance for what they lack in finesse. Consider anyone who approaches you on the street as the enemy unless proven different. Sounds harsh but you'll be amazed how much time/aggravation it saves you.
But But But.....

Here is a joke - Really an ironic state of the only scam where the victim to be, gets mad at the naysayer...

Quote:

A 3-year-old boy examined his XXXXX while taking a bath.

'Mom', he asked, 'Are these my brains?'


'Not yet,' she replied.
Now, I direct your attention to the warning of the US State Department's Travel Warnings about Hungary**## (Hold true also for Soho, Praha, Paris, Kiev...)




** [The Embassy maintains a list of bars and restaurants that are known to engage in this scam. ]
## I have a really really, funny story, about two guys in giro-d'talia tshirts and speedos - But for another time.

#6 Mar 12th, 2012, 22:49
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Six common scams

Quote:
Called dynamic currency conversion, or DCC, this allows a transaction to be converted to local currency when you pay in foreign currency.

The catch: The exchange rate isn't calculated by the credit card issuer, but rather by technology partners through the merchant's bank. DCC is done at point of sale, so the credit cards and the banks that issue the credit cards don't play a part. It's important to note that DCC fees can only be added to Visa and MasterCard credit and debit card purchases. American Express cards use a closed system.

This is also at many International Airports which are essentially shopping malls that give you a false sense of bargain value, which many are not.
#7 Mar 12th, 2012, 23:06
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#7
In India it's easy to get caught up in the poverty, religious, kindness, nonviolent aspects of the society & surroundings. This personae can often drop the guard of a newbie visitor. Same wolf, different fleece clothing .....
We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time. ~
T. S. Eliot

http://www.derekgrantdigital.com
#8 Jul 7th, 2012, 08:14
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Coming to a tourist spot near you

See it once, you say how interesting; watch it second time, you wonder, see it again across the pond - one calls it trending !

The Scam: It is invariably an expat or a local falang. The target is always a country cousin(s). The older the victim the better. The man or a woman approaches you (male or female) by saying "Do you speak English" "Sprechen Sie Deutsch"

The actor is a bit disheveled and has a gash, or so it seems from your angle. If you say "Yes" the fix begins.

"I and my Dad"/"I and my boyfriend"/"I and my mother"/... we arrived in an earlier boat and took a wrong turn on the map (while going to... /the church/monument/ruins/) and wus robbed/mugged.

You have just arrived by tourist bus, boat, tram. The actor is never a shaggy bum, or a stinkin puta, the beat up chic, the fake blood, draws you in momentarily.

"I need some monies to get my Dad/Boyfriend/Mother out from the clinic/emergency and take the boat/tram/cab back"

Gullible as many tend to be, parting with $20,EUR20 don't mean much.

Earlier this summer a couple of us took a vantage spot at a nearby cafe to observe the play being made to an elderly couple, and a pair of middle aged guys. Sensing that they were being observed, they entered the nearby estacionamiento and vanished.

Of all the minor scams which are being run elsewhere, this has a strong possibility to mutate and reach the shores of India
#9 Jul 7th, 2012, 11:17
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#9
I get that kind of stuff at the doors to Union Station. Then there's the sort who stand on traffic islands at major intersections outside the core of the city with signs on cardboard begging for assistance to finance food and transport to get them to Halifax/Calgary/Vancouver.

Another common variant is "My cell phone is out of minutes and I need to phone my son/mother/friend to get a lift/borrow money/arrange a hospital visit for their chemotherapy"
#10 Jul 7th, 2012, 13:06
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"I just need a gallon of gas..."

This must be catching on as it happened twice in northern California on the same day. Its a great shame to my rationalist ideal that I did "help" the first time.

Begging is catching on at businesses here so maybe they are learning from Indian beggers though not yet nearly as good..
#11 Jul 7th, 2012, 18:41
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#11
"I need to get a taxi home"

Oddly, the place I used to hear this repeated was outside London's King's Cross Station, and I always wondered why they didn't take the train!

"I need to get a train to the other end of India for blah-blah puja/pilgrimage/etc"


Sorry: pay for your own religion.

"I lost my purse and need Rs.5 bus fare"

Bingo! Genuine! The tiny, realistic, amount, and the guy's attitude, and reaction after being given this tiny sum all said genuine!
~
Life gets aadhar every day.
.
#12 Jul 7th, 2012, 20:56
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#12
Oh we have seen them all but still get taken sometimes.

I was walking the busy shopping street of religious small town Shirdi (Sai Baba temple) and the most common scam there is very amusing. A lady would show up from nowhere and has a small container with milk in it. Suddenly you find yourself facing a dog in front of you with very sad eyes, begging you (very well trained ) and also preventing you from walking any other way. Smart doggie.

The woman says that dog is hungry and needs milk. Since this is something new for me, I said OK. Suddenly she places the milk container on the ground and the dog is licking the milk happily and I am happy too for the dog, and the women asks for money. When you ask how much, she says Rs. 50, this is when you realize that you are scammed. An argument ensures and finally I drop Rs. 10 and walkaway. She starts shouting at you and then collects her milk and container and proceeds to the next El Stupidito she could find. Ha ha ha.

(Sai Baba, when living in the streets of Shirdi, used to feed dogs and most visitors to Shirdi are in a religious mood and the dog trick usually works.)
#13 Jul 8th, 2012, 01:07
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#13
We've all been to that situation..
#14 Jul 8th, 2012, 01:34
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#14

Close but...

Structurally it may seem the same, but it is different. It is like, you (the tourist a.k.a victim to be) want to go there (whereever the there is...) and I, the actor am doing the FUD.

Panhandling under pretext and ruse is one thing; playing on your confusion is another. The cardboard sign panhandlers have been since eons, from Viet Vets, to AIDS, to Lost my house to hurricane... It is mostly non-intrustive. While what I observed is a - Look what happened to me (us), it might happen to you yada yada...
#15 Jul 8th, 2012, 02:54
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#15
I once gave a few bucks to a panhandler whose sign read, I need a beer. Finally, a political message I can get behind..
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