Another Scam?

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Arks's picture
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05/22/2010

My sister owns an "event center" near my inn. She rents the space for reunions, parties, wedding receptions, music performances, you name it. Yesterday she got this email...

Hello my name is [a typical anglo-Saxon male name] and i live in arlington Baltimore Maryland and i am engaged and about to be married soon and hopefully by the end of next month .. and my fiancee wants the wedding held in her home town [our town name] or anywhere near there ..  i want to know if your place is available for me to book and host my wedding by the end of next month

I was a bit suspicious that a) the location he gives is both Arlington VA and Baltimore MD and b) the guy from those places is making the contact, rather than the fiancee who he says is from here. Strange.

She replied that yes she will probably have availability but needs an exact date. Then he sent this just now...

Thanks for your prompt response.

Due to the nature of my job, a Seaman/Sailor, always on a ship taking cargo from one destination to the other, it's kinda hard to plan a successful wedding with the intent to make it successful for me and my fiancee', family and some friends all on my own, I guess I need help in regards to my upcoming wedding which is coming up on August 24th or September 7th, but these dates are flexible I'm already having lots of stress planning this event on my own that's why i want you to please coordinate this event for me, as I do believe that you will do me a lovely wedding and thrill my guest to the best of your ability.

I would like to inform you that all payments to vendors will have to go through you as my wedding coordinator and you can get all the necessary arrangement done for my event as i am officially out of town because my work makes me travel a lot and that's because I  work 24/7 on a ship, so I'm always on the high sea but I will be in town 5 days prior to my wedding. My wedding time is 2pm to 6pm, Expected guest is 50. I'll like to know how much you charge for this kind of event. Deposit or full payment, will be made asap with my credit card once availability for venue is confirmed by you. I believe you can bring a level of service that surpasses anything we've seen before.

If the date is available then i will have my wedding planner contact you as soon as possible

I'm anticipating your earliest response.
Thanks.

All kinds of alarm bells in there. Obviously a scam of some kind, involving a stolen CC number, no doubt. Just wanted to share. I'm advising my sister to cut off contact and save herself a lot of grief!

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ChrisandShelley's picture
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Who says "I'm a Seaman/Sailor"? Ridiculous. Good catch.

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seashanty's picture
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Good detective work, Generic. Amazing how these go round and round for years with just a little tweak here and there. 

Remembering how excited I was the first time I got a six day reservation for five rooms when I was a newbie ... and it was all b.s. Luckily it didn't go very far. 

 

Innkeep's picture
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06/04/2008

But he's a sailor.

Reminds me of my 21st birthday celebration in Nashville, TN.  I was with several girlfriends, all of whom were already 21.  Since they all knew that I was a Grand Ole Opry fan, they suggested we go to Tootsie's Orchid Lounge, where Opry performers were rumored to hang out between shows.  Lucia announced to the waitress that she needed to go to the restroom, even before we were seated.  When she returned to our table, she seemed to be very anxious that we all leave.  But I had my first ever beer to drink (I had abstained prior to that birthday...as some of you can attest, I have since made up for lost time.) and it was taking me a while to get it down.

The rest of the story is that Lucia didn't go to the restroom, but instead went to see Tootsie.  When Lucia told Tootsie that her friend was celebrating her 21st birthday and wondered if there was anything special they would do, Tootsie looked at her watch and said, "Not now Honey, but I have a sailor coming in in about 15 minutes".  Needless to say we weren't there when the sailor arrived.

Arks's picture
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05/22/2010

Innkeep wrote:

Needless to say we weren't there when the sailor arrived.

HA!

JimBoone's picture
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Innkeep wrote:

But I had my first ever beer to drink 

Reminds me of an old tale, when I was about 5 I was left in the care of a somewhat senile Great Aunt while mom and her cousin went shopping, when they returned the question was "had we had some lunch" and the reply "yes, we had some beer and crackers" guess I always did like beer.

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cloudbedsna's picture
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What people will try astounds me, although I shouldn't be surprised. What really angers me about this is the fact they're targeting small, independent hospitality businesses. They clearly understand that they're dealing with the types of owner/operators who'll bend over backward for a guest. This is particularly despicable.

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Full Transparency: I work for Cloudbeds. I help hospitality operators drive more reservations, make more money and save hours of time

 

TheBeachHouse's picture
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Delete.     No response.    

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TBH

 

Generic's picture
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See https://www.uniquelyset.com/blog/wedding-planning-event-planning-scam/

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Arks's picture
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Generic wrote:

See https://www.uniquelyset.com/blog/wedding-planning-event-planning-scam/

Ha! Almost word-for-word! We didn't reply to his Friday morning email and haven't heard back from him. I'm slightly curious where it was headed, though.

I'm still remembering the reservation that came in, followed by all the emails about needing to send a package for us to hold until his arrival. About 30 minutes after UPS delivered the mystery package, FedEX arrived to pick it up and left with it. And of course the card that made the reservation was a charge back. Stolen number. I'll always wonder what was in that package!

Generic's picture
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02/24/2011

Rest assured, it was expensive and it's the reason that CC have 20% interest rates and 2.5% fees for you.

seashanty's picture
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06/02/2008

Sorry to your sister, but I wouldn’t even respond. For ALL the reasons already stated.

Biggest red flag to me ... You have a wedding coordinator ... coordinating the wedding is their job. Hence the title.  Including finding the venue. So that does not equal planning the wedding ‘all on your own’  You see how this doesn’t add up?  

Morticia's picture
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05/22/2008

I wouldn't even respond again to say she can't do all of that.

If she feels like she owes him some response, tell her to ask for a local contact like the bride's family.

But, really, just say no!

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Arks's picture
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Morticia wrote:

But, really, just say no!

yes

gillumhouse's picture
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05/22/2008

This screams SCAM. Not only the flex dates - bell #1  but you be the wedding planner and pay all the vendor - screaming bell #2

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