Vacationers, take note. Rental scams are everywhere and celeb fitness instructor Jillian Michaels just experienced it first-hand.
Jillian spent $60,000 for a yacht rental to take a 12 day trip along Italy’s Amalfi Coast, but it turns out her rental was anything but what was described to her prior to booking it.
Jillian took to Facebook to share her experience, which not only included photos of a boat clearly in disrepair, but also a pretty scary story with the company that handled the booking.
Over the weekend, she wrote, in part: "Beware...You guys know I keep my social pretty straight forward. Fun memes, nutrition tips, fitness videos etc. But I feel compelled to ask you all to be VERY CAREFUL with any holiday rentals you book on line. ESPECIALLY now that it's summer - apparently this type of scam is rampant. It has happened to me three times in the last 6 months and this last episode was actually terrifying and involved veiled threats to mine and my families well being if we didn't pay up 'additional funds.'"
While Jillian explained the past scams briefly, she highlighted this recent experience, writing: "This one was a charter booked through what seemed like a legit company called charterworld LLP and a broker named Amanda Brilliante. We rented a boat for 12 days. The boat was shown in pictures as pristine and if you google the boat (called The Never One Yacht) you will see how the boat was shown in pics on line. Below are pics of what the boat actually looked like. It was not only filthy, but it had no hot water, no air con when not docked, no wifi, partial electricity, it was clearly in total disrepair."
Further, she said, that while the boat was misrepresented in photos, that "this situation turned aggressive and threatening," explained they "were being extorted for money and things became so escalated we literally feared for our safety."
She also provided some tips to avoid being scammed, such as paying with a credit card, checking broker credentials, and seeing the property via FaceTime.