Beware of Spring Break Scams

March 13, 2014

Spring Break ScamsMarlborough, MA - The calendar tells us spring is just around the corner. And following a brutal winter season, college students and consumers alike will be looking forward to spring break getaways. Before you make your escape, Better Business Bureau Serving Eastern MA, ME, RI, and VT wants to make sure your trip isn’t ruined by the threat of scams.

“Spring break is right around the corner and many New Englanders are looking to escape the cold and snow,” says Paula Fleming, vice president of the local BBB. “The possibility of scams start when you begin planning your trip, and BBB wants to remind you to proceed with caution before heading to warmer climates.”

The BBB offers the following tips when planning a spring vacation:

Book through a reliable travel agency. Check out any travel agency at or search the BBB Accredited Business Directory for one. Accredited Businesses must adhere to BBB’s 8 Standards for Trust, including to advertise honestly, be transparent, and honor promises.

Get details about your trip in writing. Be sure to confirm all details in writing, such as total cost, flights, hotel reservations, car rental, or any restrictions that apply.

Use a credit card as payment. Paying by credit card offers the most protection should something go wrong or you need to dispute a charge.

Consider purchasing travel insurance. Travel insurance provides coverage for particular perils that occur on your trip under which it will pay out claims. Be sure to do your research on different travel insurance policies and thoroughly read the terms and conditions before purchasing.

Use caution when considering deals. If a deal or package offers a lot for a very low price, be wary. If something seems too good to be true, it usually is.

Be wary of claims that you “won” a trip. Generally if you’ve truly won something, it will be given to you as a gift. Be especially leery if the offer is unsolicited. Check on any offers that sound too good to be true with your local Better Business Bureau.

For more information you can trust, visit

ABOUT BBB:  For more than 100 years, Better Business Bureau has been helping people find businesses and brands they can trust. In 2015, people turned to BBB more than 172 million times for BBB Business Reviews on more than 5.3 million businesses, all available for free at 

The Council of Better Business Bureaus is the umbrella organization for the local, independent BBBs in the United States, Canada and Mexico, as well as home to its national and international programs on dispute resolution, advertising review, and industry self-regulation. BBB Serving Eastern Massachusetts, Maine, Rhode Island and Vermont was founded in 1920.
Paula Fleming is VP of Communications & Marketing for Better Business Bureau Serving Eastern MA, ME, RI & VT.  Find Paula on Google+.  Find Paula on Google+.