I had a strange experience this morning, and thought some other readers might be interested to hear about it:ntLast weekend I went an event where I signed up for a chance to win a free cruise at a table inside. ntWhat a great surprise it was this morning to be called and informed that I had won an 8-night fantasy vacation. Although I had a hard time believing I had actually won, the odds of winning among a few hundred people didn’t strike me as astronomical, and the employees stationed in the above mentioned event seemed to represent a perfectly legitimate cruise company. n The phone rep painstakingly went through the details of the vacation: 3 days in Orlando, 2 nights on the cruise, 3 more in Orlando. Orlando isn’t my version of paradise, and a glorified gambling junk not my ideal form of transportation, but given my delightful entry-level job, even free bread baskets are enough to get me excited. Tack on all meals included, spa packages, car rentals, and a 2 for 1 airfare, and the phone rep was dealing with a very happy winner. nI almost missed the minor catch: The representative kept on quoting a two-ninety-nine’ fee necessary to secure my reservations, which I interpreted as $2.99, but came to understand as $299. And oh, how concerned my friend was that I had sufficient funds to afford this fee! It got weirder by the minute:nSales rep: I see that you wrote down you use a Visa on your entry form?nMe: What? No. I use a Mastercard. [Note: The entry form never asked for credit card info]nSales rep: I see. What is the full name on the card?nMe: [I say my full name]nSales rep: Great! What’s the expiration date?nMe: Ummm..[I say the date]nSales rep: Now, just for security purposes, what are the last four digits of your card number? nWhoa there, cowboy. I very sweetly said I would prefer to get a confirmation email first and be given more time to make my decision. I mentioned the word scam.’ The rep informed me that our entire phone call had been recorded without my knowledge, and that I could access the recording at any time. I protested again, and he assured me that because I was paying by credit card I was completely protected from unwanted charges. What? He transferred me to his supervisor, who repeated the whole song and dance to me, even as I googled the words cruise ship scam.’ nHere’s what I found:(((Redacted))) which with minor variations closely matched the details of the Bahamas Celebrations cruise. nFurther searching revealed that their site, www.floridabahamascruisevacations.com is under GoDaddy’s Private Domain Registration. Since I work at a domain name registrar, I know enough to understand that keeping a domain name owner’s identity secret is a great way to mask fraud. nLesson of the day: Just because a company is listed as a legitimate sponsor in a legitimate event in a legitimate venue, with real-live legitimate human beings as representatives, does not make the company itself in any way legitimate. Go ahead, give them a call at 1-800-231-1298 or 718-530-9134 and ask what they have to say for themselves. Just make sure you’ve got your credit card in hand! nAllisonnNew York, New YorkU.S.A. CLICK here to see why Ripoff Scams, as a matter of policy, deleted either a phone number, link or e-mail address from this Report.
floridabahamascruisevacations.com Orlando, Florida U.S.A.