Euro 2012 fans facing hotels scam
Jun 24 2012
England fans at Euro 2012 have reported being ripped off by fraudsters charging in advance for hotels that do not exist.
Supporters' groups said a number of people have fallen victim to the scam, while even the cheapest reputable hotels are charging more than £120 a night.
Graphic designer Terry Sowle, 32, said his experience was "a nightmare" after paying £200 for a hotel in Kiev that was made up.
"We booked it through Booking.com and when we were in Donetsk we got an email to say the hotel was a fraudulent hotel and it didn't exist. We had paid up front and we've not had the money back yet."
Mr Sowle, from Bournemouth, Dorset, said the con had cost them a considerable amount of time and money.
"We arrived here with nowhere to go," he said. "We wandered around for a day to try to find somewhere. It was pretty annoying. You go through a big operator like Booking.com and you at least expect it too exist."
Kevin Miles of the Football Supporters' Federation said the case was not an isolated incident.
"It's not hundreds, but there's been enough for us to flag it up as an issue. A lot of people have paid a significant amount of money and they then have to find alternative accommodation at short notice," he said.
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