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Travel Tip: Free Airline Ticket Scams

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The rise of social media has made it easier than ever to share information with friends and family…but it also makes it very easy for scammers to take advantage of would-be travelers.

One of the most common scams out there is the free airline ticket offer. There’s a Facebook scam offering free tickets on Southwest and other major airlines. The link takes you to you to a malicious third-party app, or to a survey page that requires personal information.

These things go viral when you share them on your own Facebook page.

There are even scams on Instagram, where users will offer you free airline tickets if you simply follow their account. Guess what? No tickets will ever show up.  No harm done, but it’s a scam nonetheless.

Ever heard of US Airlines or American Airways? Neither have I. But companies using these names will send out an email that takes you  to a page asking for personal information, or requiring that you attend a sales presentation.

Bottom line: know that airlines aren’t in the business of handing out free tickets, especially this day and age. Phrases like “limited time” and “certain restrictions” are a dead giveaway.

And when you’re not sure…Google it. Chances are you’re not the first to be hit and you certainly won’t be the last.

For more information, visit the Airline archives.

Keep reading for more travel tips.