20 Scams That Are So “Normal,” We Don’t Even Realize They’re Scams

Ephraim Obare
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Welcome, dear internet travelers, to the realm where the ordinary becomes extraordinary, the mundane turns scandalous, and the acceptable print rules supreme! In this glorious digital age, scams aren’t just cloak-and-dagger affairs, no! They’ve donned the garb of regularity, so “normal” that they’ve practically become our pen pals.

So, hold on to your wallets and embark on a riveting journey through the top 20 scams that are so commonplace that we practically invite them in for tea! Be warned, though: this ride may lead to some eye-opening revelations. Ready to see The Matrix? Here we go!

Designer Sunglasses

Designer Sunglasses
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You’re strolling down the beach and see a pair of designer sunglasses for a bargain price. But wait, do those Armani cost under $10?

Overpriced Bottled Water

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There’s no denying we need to stay hydrated. But is that $5 bottle of water in your hotel room worth it?

Extended Warranties

Extended Warranties
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They sound great in theory, but when you try to use them, the item is “not covered.” As if that wasn’t bad enough, you often have to pay a fee to get the warranty in the first place.

The Printer Ink Scam

The Printer Ink Scam
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Printer ink is pricier than champagne. It’s cheaper to buy a new printer than to replace the ink! Talking to Consumer Reports, Scott Williams, a chemistry professor at Rochester Institute of Technology, says, “Ink companies spend a lot of time to get the right blend of pigment, dye, and vehicle to be able to have a very stable small droplet for high-resolution printing.” And this forms part of the argument for expensive ink.

Gym Membership

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It’s no surprise that gym memberships are expensive. From the membership dues to the class fees, getting in shape can take a bite out of your wallet. But it is even worse when you sign a contract but don’t use it often.

Not only have you wasted money on an unused membership, but there’s also usually an early termination fee. And have you ever tried to cancel one of these? Good luck.

Pyramid Schemes

The Pyramid Scheme
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These are often disguised as “network marketing” opportunities. Pyramid schemes may seem too good to be true, and they are. In a pyramid scheme, you pay money for the right to recruit other members beneath you. You make money off the people who join under you, and they make money off those who join beneath them.

The problem is that in these schemes, you’re buying no actual product or service. That means any money that changes hands is exchanged between pyramid scheme members. Eventually, the whole system will collapse when no more people are joining.


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The free vacation is enticing until you’re stuck with a property you never use and mounting fees. Timeshares can seem like a great deal – you get to use a vacation property for a fraction of the cost. But in reality, you’re buying part ownership of the property and must pay regular fees to maintain it.

You may be stuck paying these fees even if you never use the timeshare, or it becomes impossible to sell it.

Credit Card Offers

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Do you know those pre-approved credit cards sent through the mail? Well, those come with hidden fees and high-interest rates — so watch out!

College Textbooks

College Textbooks
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Every semester, a new edition. The only change? The price. If you’re a college student, this can be a considerable expense that adds up quickly.

Unused Subscriptions

Unused Subscriptions
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If you sign up for a subscription service and forget to cancel it, you’re stuck paying monthly fees even if you don’t use the service.

Set yourself a reminder each month or yearly to review your subscriptions! Do you watch all 200 channels on your cable package?

Online Surveys

Online Surveys
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Online surveys can be a great way to make extra cash, but don’t expect to get rich quickly. Spend 20 minutes answering questions and receive… a coupon?

Cell Phone Plans

12 Destructive Fixations People Can't Let Go Of
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When selecting the right cell phone plan for your needs, read the fine print and compare different plans from carriers.

Beware of hidden fees that can add up and be an unexpected expense. Look for any discounts you may qualify for, such as student discounts or family plans.

Payday Loans

Payday Loans
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Payday loans can be an expensive way to borrow money. They promise instant cash but at exorbitant interest rates. Before signing any contract, ensure you understand the terms and conditions of the loan and know all associated fees.

Remember that payday loans should only be used as a last resort since they can lead to extreme financial hardship if not paid off in full and on time.

Free Trials

Free Trials
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Free trials of products and services can be beneficial in finding the right fit. However, read all the details before signing up to know what is expected and when your free trial period ends. They’re great until you forget to cancel, and your card gets charged.

Data Overages

Data Overages
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Be aware of data overages, especially if you have a plan with limited data. Many cell phone providers will send alerts when your data usage is getting close to the limit, but check your records periodically as well, so there won’t be any surprise fees. But how are we still paying for overages in an age of unlimited data?


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Insurance can be a great way to cover unexpected expenses but read the policy thoroughly before signing up. Look at what is and isn’t covered, how much your co-pay will be, and when your deductible kicks in.

Knowing all the details ahead of time can make a big difference if something happens down the line. And don’t forget to shop around for the best rates.

Movie Theater Popcorn

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No matter how much or little popcorn you eat at the movie theater, it will always be expensive. It’s just popped corn, but it costs more than a meal at a fancy restaurant.

ATM Fees

ATM Fees
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ATM fees can quickly add up. Are you paying money to access your own money? That’s just wrong.

The “Convenience” Fee

The "Convenience" Fee
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When you buy something online, you’re often subject to a “convenience” fee. While it might seem like no big deal at the time, those extra couple of dollars add up quickly if you do enough shopping.

Just for the convenience of paying online? Sounds like a raw deal. Avoid convenience fees by paying with cash or in person whenever possible.

Airline Baggage Fees

Airline Baggage Fees
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This is one of the most notorious money drains. It can add up to serious money if you’re a frequent traveler. It costs more to carry your bag than to carry you!

Source: Reddit. 

Don’t Get Fooled! 20 Scams That Trick Even the Smartest Folks—Have You Fallen Into Their Sneaky Traps?

The Overpayment Scam
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But fear not, for this masterpiece will pull back the curtain on the 20 craftiest scams lurking in your inbox, social media feed, or even at your doorstep. So, sit tight, keep your wits about you, and prepare to navigate this labyrinth with us—because, as they say, knowing is half the battle!

Don’t Get Fooled! 20 Scams That Trick Even the Smartest Folks—Have You Fallen Into Their Sneaky Traps?

7 Best Pet Gates of 2024

7 Best Pet Gates of 2023
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Dogs and cats are part of the family. And like any other family member, we want to ensure they are safe and secure. That’s why a pet gate is an essential addition to your home. It keeps your pets safe from getting into trouble and gives you peace of mind, knowing they can’t escape when you’re not around. Choosing the right dog gate can be daunting for pet parents. With so many different styles and sizes, it can take time to narrow down your choices.

7 Best Pet Gates of 2024

20 Epic Things Baby Boomers Totally Get, Making Younger Generations Look Hopelessly Clueless

20 Epic Things Baby Boomers Totally Get, Making Younger Generations Look Hopelessly Clueless
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Step aside, millennials and Gen Z, and make way for the wisdom of the Baby Boomers! They’ve rocked and rolled through decades of change, and they have tales to tell. Buckle up as we journey into the vibrant, technicolor days of the Boomers, where life was lived in high definition, emotions were raw, and experiences were real rather than virtual.

20 Epic Things Baby Boomers Totally Get, Making Younger Generations Look Hopelessly Clueless

20 Things That 90% of the Human Race Absolutely Hate

Buffering Videos
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Welcome, fellow humans! We are an eclectic bunch, aren’t we? With our varying tastes, preferences, and quirks, finding common ground can seem like hunting for a needle in a haystack. Yet, there are a few universally acknowledged truths, a set of things that we, as a species, have a shared disdain for.

20 Things That 90% of the Human Race Absolutely Hate

10 Travel Destinations Known To Be Overrated That Avid Travelers Still Love

Las Vegas
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Cities and countries earn their reputations through word of mouth, media coverage, and the attractions they offer. While some overrated places deserve that label, seasoned travelers thoroughly enjoy many. Here are some overrated tourist destinations that voyagers adore, according to the internet.

10 Travel Destinations Known To Be Overrated That Avid Travelers Still Love


  • Ephraim Obare

    Ephraim Obare is a versatile member of the Frenz Hub writing team, bringing a rich background in economics to his work. An avid swimmer, reader, and cyclist, Ephraim blends analytical insights with his diverse interests.

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