Eclipse mania has prompted many people to travel, but even if you're watching the total solar eclipse from the comfort of home, Better Business Bureau's Emily Valla shares some travel advice.
"The Council of Better Business Bureaus says there have been reports of people who booked accommodations for eclipse travel long in advance, only to have their reservations changed or even cancelled. It’s a good reminder that travelers need to be vigilant in the booking process," Valla said.
BBB recommends checking with other travelers if you are booking online through a third party site. Read reviews and look at www.bbb.org to see what previous customers' experiences have been.
"Always double check that a listing is on the real website and emails are coming from official addresses. Make sure to correspond within the website or app and not through other means. Make sure to have everything in writing, and don’t deal with anyone who asks for payment outside of the platform’s approved options," Valla explained.
If something goes awry with a reservation, talk to the business first.
"Before you file a complaint with BBB or fire off an angry message on social media, try to talk to the business first. Most businesses want to keep you as a customer and will work with you to find a reasonable solution. Then if you need to escalate a situation, reach out to BBB or to the Attorney General’s office. We can work as a neutral third party to help come to a resolution," Valla said.
And BBB reminds you to pay by credit card whenever possible while traveling, as you generally have more fraud protections and the ability to dispute charges.
"Be vigilant. Manage your financial accounts. Call your credit card provider to let them know you’ll be traveling and check accounts daily. Avoid entering personal information over public WiFi. And, save the selfies until you get home. The last thing you want to do on vacation is alert the world your house is empty," Valla said.
For more resources to help you protect your identity and money, visit www.bbb.org.