Scam alert: fake Facebook page swindles Thai tourists out of thousands of baht for Pattaya pool villas

Thai woman Achiraya Malarat with the fake ad. Pictures courtesy of Pattaya News.

A group of Thai tourists were allegedly tricked out of tens of thousands of baht by a fake Pattaya pool villa Facebook page.

Achiraya Malarat, a 27 year old Thai tourist from Khon Kaen province, got in touch with The Pattaya News to expose a scammer who was pretending to be a genuine pool villa operator on Facebook.

On April 18, Achiraya and her family decided to take a break and pay a visit to Pattaya. Eager to find accommodation, she contacted a Facebook page called “Pool Villa Pattaya by Kanda” to book a villa. The page had many followers, which led Achiraya to believe it was a trustworthy source, so she went ahead and transferred a deposit of 16,900 baht to cover the home insurance.

After transferring the money, the Facebook page went offline for more than half a day. Achiraya tried contacting the page through the provided phone number, only to find out that it was unreachable. Frustrated, she waited until she finally received a booking message from the page.

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Upon arrival at the accommodation on April 22, Achiraya and her extended family of 18 people were dumbfounded when the real villa operator informed them that they had fallen victim to a fake Facebook page. The operator said that the villa was fully booked every day and required bookings to be made a month in advance.

Shocked by the news, Achiraya tried to get in touch with “Paa Meaw,” a contact provided by the Facebook page, but unsurprisingly, this person could not be reached. When she attempted to contact the Facebook page again, she was instantly blocked.

Scam alert: fake Facebook page swindles Thai tourists out of thousands of baht for Pattaya pool villas | News by Thaiger
The fake ad that scammed Thai tourists of thousands of baht.

The villa operator informed Achiraya that the false Facebook page had been using their villa’s photos to deceive people and advised her to report the incident to the police.

Following this recommendation, Achiraya visited the Pattaya Police Station, where she was told to file a report at her local police station for more convenient questioning. Distressed, she urged the Pattaya Police to show greater efforts in resolving the situation as it could tarnish Pattaya’s reputation.

This story should serve as a cautionary tale for those looking to book accommodation through social media. While Facebook pages may appear legitimate at first glance, it’s vital to check their authenticity before making any transactions. Stay vigilant and be aware that scammers are becoming increasingly cunning in their attempts to dupe unsuspecting tourists.

Should you ever suspect that you may have fallen victim to a scam, promptly alert the relevant authorities to assist in your case and to prevent others from encountering the same fate.

Crime NewsPattaya NewsTourism News

Mitch Connor

Mitch is a Bangkok resident, having relocated from Southern California, via Florida in 2022. He studied journalism before dropping out of college to teach English in South America. After returning to the US, he spent 4 years working for various online publishers before moving to Thailand.

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