New reports have surfaced of an increase in scam websites leaving Aussie travellers out of pocket as they head to Bali, prompting a warning to the thousands of holidaymakers to be vigilant.
To enter Indonesia, most tourists need to purchase a visa for around $50 AUD, which can be pre-purchased from the official Indonesian Government website in order to skip the airport queue.
But recently there has been a surge in third party, imitation websites popping up online, which charge exorbitant fees or in some cases may issue a fake document.
RAA Travel General Manager Gina Norman said some of the sites were appearing in the top few results on Google.
“Many travellers are out and about heading to Bali but that’s when the scammers come out to take advantage of it,” Gina said.
“It’s catching some people off guard and either causing them to purchase visas that aren’t legitimate or cost exorbitant amounts.”
Gina said travellers could take simple steps to avoid being ripped off.
“The best advice is, if you book with your local travel agent, ask them to show you the correct website to purchase your documents.
“If you’re booking by yourself, make sure you go to the Smart Traveller website as they have all the listings of official websites for all countries.
Gina also said other destinations which required documents to enter had seen similar scams in the past.
“The other big one that catches people out is the ESTA for the United States, which is a visa waiver program.
“Again, there’s sites that charge exorbitant fees when they should only be in the order of $47.”
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