So how DO you know it’s a scam?

One of the hassles of running any kind of holiday accommodation is that after a while you start to get regular scam e-mails.

The problem is that, in most cases, there is no foolproof way of separating them out from real enquiries. For example, some of the ways that people use are:

  1. Bad grammar. Sadly, even the grammar of native English speakers isn’t always the best and that’s particularly the case when they’re sending out a series of enquiry e-mails.
  2. It’s from a hotmail, yahoo or gmail account. Many genuine enquirers use such accounts so this is a particularly bad way of separating them out.
  3. It’s been trapped in your spam filter. A surprisingly high number of normal e-mails are trapped too so this is far from ideal.

In fact the only really sure ways of determining that it is a scam is that it’s from someone who has sent hundreds of similar e-mails or if it’s from Nigeria (nearly all scams originate there). Unfortunately, it’s only your listing service that can tell you that and most don’t bother to highlight the country of origin of enquiries. One notable exception is OurInns which automatically blocks anyone from sending “hundreds” of e-mails and also includes a scam checking facility so that you can tell whether or not the e-mail was sent from Nigeria.

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