Richmond, Va. —Virginia Limousine Association (VLA) members have been put on alert about possible wine tour scam artists. Unfortunately, several chauffeured ground transportation companies in the Washington D.C. area have already been duped.
The offending company, Capital Region Wine Tours and Travel Planners, operates under one of several wine tour sites (dcwinetour.com and viginiawinetour.com, just to name two) that have no common phone number or address listed anywhere on the sites. Also, they can only be contacted via email to book a wine tour.
The scam itself breaks down as such: The customer submits a request for a quote, and they are quoted a very low rate for the tour. The customer is then asked to send payment by check to a “dummy” address that is nothing more than a P.O. Box disguised as an office suite address. A few days prior to the tour date, the offending company calls the customer requesting a credit card for “incidentals” or overcharges if the tour runs over. The scammers then call a real chauffeured ground transportation company pretending to be the client and provides the customer’s credit card for payment. When the chauffeured ground transportation company charges the card, the customer claims they have already paid for the trip and stops the charges on the card, leaving the company without payment for services rendered.
Visit virginialimousineassociation.org for more information.