Two in five Brits afraid of becoming victims of holiday scam, TrustPilot research reveals

Two in five (43 per cent) Brits are afraid of becoming scam victims when booking holidays, new research from the global online review community Trustpilot reveals.

This is one of the busiest times of the year for holiday bookings, as the British winter weather prompts many people to make their summer holiday plans. According to the research, more than two thirds of people (68 per cent) say holidays are an important investment for them, while three quarters (74 per cent) say holidays are one of the biggest individual spends they make every year. Additionally, 62 per cent of people say they proactively save money during the year to spend on holiday.

As holidays are such an important purchase, it is essential that customers don’t become victims of a scam. As a result, Trustpilot is advising holiday goers to spend time researching holiday providers before booking a holiday with them, and it outlines the top “trust triggers” for customers when researching holiday companies.

No hidden fees tops the list of “trust triggers”, with 91 per cent of respondents saying this is important to them when making a decision about booking a holiday through a holiday provider. Other trust triggers include an easy-to-use booking system (86 per cent), a user-friendly website (80 per cent) and positive online reviews (78 per cent).

TOP HOLIDAY BOOKING TRUST TRIGGERS:

No hidden fees 91%
Reasonable price 90%
Easy-to-use booking system 86%
Protected purchase (e.g. ATOL protected) 81%
User-friendly website 80%
Positive online reviews 78%
Telephone customer service 72%
Heard of the brand 72%
Recommendations from family and friends 47%
Positive feedback on social media 40%

The research highlights that a company’s online presence is especially important to holiday makers. Almost three quarters of consumers (73 per cent) say they wouldn’t purchase a holiday from a website which looks unprofessional. Plus, the research also shows that online reviews are a crucial factor in helping consumers make informed decisions when booking a holiday. 65 per cent say they specifically consider a company’s reviews before making a holiday booking with them, while 69 per cent of respondents say they will choose a holiday provider that has better reviews over a cheaper one with poor reviews.

James Westlake, VP Trustpilot UK, said: “Given the time and money many people invest in holiday bookings, the fear of losing money through a scam is understandable. However, this risk can easily be mitigated by spending time researching holiday providers before making a booking decision. To avoid becoming a victim, there are a number of simple steps to follow, such as checking for purchase protection such as ATOL, reading online reviews, and checking for any hidden fees. Looking out for these important trust triggers will ensure people book with the most trustworthy providers and won’t come across any nasty or unexpected surprises on their holidays.”