Wherever we are in the world, low incomes and low living standards have taught people little survival tactics and tourists are always the easiest prey! Here are the ‘tourist scam’ tactics used all over Turkey!
Fake Ancient Coins
Coins of ancient times, especially those with high historical and valuable value, which are rare in museums, are found and imitations are made by casting or minting. These rare coins can find serious buyers in the market. In this method, the buyer is first shown and attracted with a few original coins, and then counterfeit coins are sold to him.
Taxi drivers inflating prices for foreign tourists is not unique to Istanbul. It is a situation encountered in many big cities around the world that taxi drivers take advantage of the language barrier to overcharge or extend the route.
Fake Tour Guide
You can come across people who pretend to be tour guides and who are extremely friendly. They will offer you free guiding services which will end up demanding money in the end or will end up with you being pushed an overpriced souvenir. Always ask for the official license of the tour guides.
While walking around a popular spot, a scammer who approaches you will support you in taking your photo. As soon as you accept the offer and give your phone or camera, you are helping the scammer reach his goal.
In touristic neighborhoods in Turkey, shoe shiners make it look like they’ve accidentally dropped their supplies, enticing tourists to help and offering to shine their shoes as a courtesy in return. However, after the shoes have been painted or polished, it turns out that this is not a counter gesture. The shoe shiner persistently demands money.
Bars and Nightclubs
It is a system that turns into a trap especially for male tourists traveling alone. In this method, where a beautiful-looking woman is used, the woman who approaches the man who is traveling alone invites the man to a bar or nightclub by courting. The woman, who dances with the man and consumes a lot of alcohol, leaves the scene by throwing the heavy bill on the tourist.
Phone Line Scam
Tourists, who use the lines taken on their own passports, leave the lines back to the tourism offices when they leave Turkey. These lines are not closed and provided to certain gangs for dark jobs. According to the evidence, phone scammers threaten people by presenting themselves as police and prosecutors with these lines.
How to Avoid Being Scammed in Turkey
Most of these scamming tactics are not just unique for Turkey. You should be always beware and careful while traveling around the world. The best way of avoiding these scams is to have a trusted, licensed, professional tour guide with you. Contact me to learn more about Turkey and to hire a Turkish tour guide for your Turkey tour. See you soon, Hasan Gülday.