Possible DOT scam
Got a phone call from someone who claimed to be from the Department of Tourism. He said that they were sending me a card that would give me discounts on on airfare and hotels and various travel-related expenses. He just wanted to verify my mailing address.
Wait a minute, I said. Before you send me anything, how did I come to avail of such a card and how much is it going to cost me? I was referred by my credit card company, he said, and the one-time fee of Php 3,000.00 which would entitle me to life-time validity would automatically be charged to my credit card.
Well what if I choose not to avail of this card? He seemed surprised. I am the first person to express disinterest in the card, he said. Everyone else jumped at the opportunity. It’s not so much disinterest as it it skepticism, I said. I don’t even know anything about this card; I haven’t heard or read anything about it. You can’t just tell me “we’ll give you lots of discounts and stuff!” and expect me to take your word for it and fork over three grand. I want to find out more about this card, and if I decide that I do want it, I’ll let you know. But until then do not send me anything that I could possibly be charged for. Where can I get more information about this?
Sounding vaguely annoyed he said he would email me and then it sounded like he was going to hang up. Hold on, aren’t you going to get my email address? I asked. Oh, right he said. He took it down. We hung up.
That conversation sounded awfully shady to me. I searched the DOT website for any information on a discount card and found none. I Googled various permutations of “discount card DOT,” nothing came up. Hmmmm. Scam?