If you are traveling as a singleton, meeting people on the road can be a great way to get social, providing a firsthand account of the culture you are experiencing. Yet it is also fraught with pitfalls, one of which is becoming the victim of a scam as travelers often arrive with full bank accounts and are easy targets. Below, we shed light on the pitfalls to avoid when dating on the road.

travelling aloneyou don't have to travel alone

Use Apps Wisely

While on your journey, most people you come across will be happy and genuinely interested in meeting you. They will appreciate the business you bring them, or just be happy to share their culture with others. Yet some people will try to take advantage of your curious nature. They may try to leverage your desire for a holiday romance to try and scam you out of funds or belongings.

Online dating apps have led to a rise in dating scams. ExpressVPN conducted a survey, which found that, in 2021, dating scams on popular apps rose to 56,000 cases, compared to 33,000 the year before. While they list several types of scams, the one most likely to befall a traveler is the 'asking-for-help scam'. This is where a person builds a trusting relationship and then asks for financial assistance. It could be to pay for medical care or even to visit the person when they return to their home country.

In some cases, even the dating sites themselves can be fake, taking the details and persona of a person and using it for financial gain. While you shouldn't avoid dating through apps while on your travels, it helps to know the warning signs.

friends in the mountainsAlways Meet in Public Places

Always Meet in Public Places

It's a good idea to meet someone in a public place, not just for the first time but at least the second, as well. A busy restaurant or bar is good, as there will always be people around you who can help if you are in danger. As we've reported before on The Travel Almanac, major tourist attractions are also a good idea. You should also make sure it is at a place you chose yourself. It is not uncommon for venues to be a part of any scams that may take place.

Ensure you let people know that you are meeting here as well. You may tell friends, relatives, travel partners, or even the hotel reception. 

Trust Your Feelings

If you have ever gone traveling, you have probably built up an internal 'radar' for when something does not feel right. However, some scams can be so good they just fly under the radar. If the culture is alien to you, things that seem odd may just be normal in the host country, making it hard to avoid insulting people. However, if something just feels off, the best advice is to make excuses and leave. 

Finally, enjoy yourself. You don't want to spend the entire date worrying about safety and miss out on a great chance at romance. These tips should help you so you can go out with peace of mind.



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