Safety Tips when paying to rent a cottage or villa

You will often be asked to pay a partial deposit at the time of booking and the full balance up to 4 weeks prior to arrival. If you have booked late you will be asked to pay in full for your break at the time of booking.
Paying by credit card is the safest method
If you are booking through a large provider they will often protect your money and the transaction made between you and the owner, so it makes it much safer. You should pay with a credit card as no matter what you
buy, if the must property is over £100.00, you are covered to a degree and can raise a charge back in the event of any issue with the booking or property owner.
In the rare event the property is not there or the property was not legitimate, you can go to your credit card company and regain the money in most cases (not all). Be wary of paying any funds, deposit or otherwise
under £100 in value.
What do I do if the holiday home owner does not accept credit cards?
The advice is simply to walk away. Many owners will not have credit card facilities, however paying into someone’s personal bank account by cheque or BACS is simply never entirely safe. If you are defrauded and book a non legitimate property from a scam site, you will not get your money back and are not covered.
There are enough providers to book with these days to avoid going directly to an owner, so the advice is, NEVER DO IT. If you are to pay by cheque or BACS make sure its via one of the larger operators such as HomeAway, Owners Direct, Holiday Lettings as they are big enough to support you with any issues and have a duty of care should they unknowingly promote a fraudulent rental. It’s likely any issue would be resolved as part of their customer service process, however, check their terms and conditions before making any transactions.
Do not just use a search engine to find individual or small property owners. You can also use a holiday home comparison site to make sure you are not tricked and find reputable suppliers.
We do not recommend using Paypal either, so stick to using suppliers that will let you make transactions using your major credit or debit card.

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