It’s the end of the year!
And that means…?
Technology is super nifty right now. That and globalisation.
Even before you reach foreign soil, you’re now able to book anything and everything you’d need in the middle of a workday. Shh, don’t tell my boss I said that.
No more trying to bamboozle your way through a foreign language, mangling it and risking getting mangled for doing it.
Instead, everything’s awesome with English, or Google Translate.
But just like your non-existent $100,000 note, everything comes with two different sides.
Sure, it’s more convenient. But at the same time, it’s riskier as well, as Facebook user Jillian Chia would tell you.
Facebook User Uploaded Experience About Overseas Driver Scam
On 1 Dec 2018, Facebook user Jillian Chia uploaded a lengthy post onto Facebook about her nightmarish trip to Cebu.
Went For a 5 Day 4 Night Holiday in Cebu
According to her Facebook Post, she went to Cebu for a five-day-four-night trip with four other girls.
They were recommended to a driver, (Jeffrey Subing Subing) Archilles Oddyssy, and decided to engage his services.
They paid 27,500 Pesos (~S$712.50) for him to bring them around the island, as well as to book their accommodations and itinerary for the trip.
In case you’re not aware, some people like to engage a personal driver + car during their trips so they won’t need to spend precious time and money finding a taxi.
Things Started Going Wrong When They Reached Cebu
So there they are, having done all the prep, thinking they’ll just relax, enjoy and have fun.
When they arrived at Cebu Mactan International Airport, Jeffrey was late by an hour.
And when he finally arrived, it wasn’t in a van but two cars instead. He claimed that his van was towed away.
After arriving at their accommodations, they were ready to go for a city tour. But their driver told them that as there’s not enough time left for the day, so he brought them to a wine shop to make up for the missed tour.
Driver Asked For Extra Money Despite Them Already Having Paid For it
After the wine stop, the driver asked for an extra 1,250 Pesos (~$32.30) for “entry + miscellaneous + government fees” to go to Bohol.
They initially questioned him but when he locked them in the car with him and shouted at them, they paid him.
They were frightened and just wanted to get out of the car.
Introducing Friend Thomas
Next day dawned, bright and early, and Jeffrey arrived 30 minutes late with a friend, Thomas, in tow.
Thomas took over from Jeffrey and drove them out for their activities. Things were actually going pretty well until they went for canyoneering.
Thomas asked them to pay for the activity, claiming that he didn’t receive any money for it. And after the activity, he demanded an extra 7,500 Pesos (~$200) because they’ve “exceeded” the playing time.
Had To Fork Out More Money In The End
Their initial coordinator and driver, Jeffrey, ghosted the girls.
He claimed that he wasn’t shown respect and wanted to “teach them a lesson”.
He alleged that everything that happened on the trip was their own fault.
They had to get a new coordinator, a new driver, and pay for all the activities all over again.
In total, they paid an extra 27,000 Pesos (~$700) for the trip.
You can read the full Facebook post below:
Moral of the story? Don’t pay anything unless you’re there. And always make sure the person you’re engaging the service from is a legit business.
It might be pricier, but hey, at least you won’t lose the feeling of being on a perfect vacation, no?
Also one thing to remember: some of these driver do get commissions from places that they bring you to. When you’re searching for a driver online, Google before making any decision.
If there’s even a faint red flag, siam.
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