A team of hustlers expose the scams that cheat tourists. Alex steals a 35,000-pound hire car in under ten minutes using just a hi-vis jacket and a clipboard.
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Alex has come to this busy multi-storey car park
to pick up a brand-new luxury car.
And, if his plan works, that's exactly what he'll be driving out of here in just ten minutes.
The car park he's chosen is used by tourists and the general public
and is also a base for a major car-rental agency.
Alex sets about looking official in his fluorescent jacket,
but he needs to work quickly to avoid attracting unwelcome attention.
It's just round the corner, downstairs.
Just walk down this ramp...
..do a U-turn.
For the scam, Alex needs some customers to rent one of the cars.
Could this be the opportunity he's been looking for?
Looks like Alex could be in luck.
It's time for Alex to put the plan in gear.
He's going to make these girls give him their car.
-Are you for this one?
Oh, right, OK.
One second, cos I've just had a call from them downstairs...um...
Within seconds, Alex is holding the keys to this £35,000 luxury car.
I'm going to have to give you a different one. This one, there's a slight problem with a rear wheel.
-It's not behaving properly.
Do you have your paperwork?
The girls already saw Alex on their way to the rental office,
so don't question his authority.
They hand over all their paperwork.
Do you have your exit ticket as well?
It matches with the car. I'll be 30 seconds. I'm going to come down here...
I promise I'll be two seconds, yeah?
So far, so good.
He's got everything he needs to make his getaway.
That one's a bit more powerful than this one, so you'll have more fun.
Alex has got his hands on the car, but can he drive it away from right under their noses?
He doesn't hang about,
and makes his way out of the car park, driving straight past the rental office in the process,
and using the genuine exit ticket for the barriers,
which the girls kindly gave him.
The whole operation has taken just ten minutes.
The marks soon realise something isn't quite right.
Eventually, they decide to ask the rental staff what's going on.
-That bloke just took our car.
The, er... He said there was a problem with the back wheel.
He asked for the documents, the key and the thingy card.
He just took it!
Well, he said he needed...
-When we drove past to park, he was there, wasn't he?
And then when we came to get the car, he was up there. And he was just looking at all the cars.
It dawns on the rental agent, and the marks, that they've been the victims of a con trick,
and that their car is gone.
Some bloke swabbed it from us.
He said there was a problem with the back wheel.
He just looked like he worked here! Oh, what the hell is going on?
Why would you give keys to someone you don't know?!
It always amazes us how people drop their guard when they see a fluorescent jacket.
That just makes it easy for Alex to give them instructions, take the car and the paperwork, and leave.
Modern, expensive vehicles are actually quite difficult to steal.
They've got sophisticated security systems and sophisticated locks.
The best way to be able to steal them is to get the keys.
If somebody comes up to you and says, "Give me your keys,"
unless you're absolutely certain they are who they say they are,
don't part with them!
When on holiday, it doesn't get much better than relaxing in the sun with a drink in your hand...
except if that drink is free.
The hustlers are going to show you how to win drinks from your mates by using proposition bets.
So, watch and learn.
I will have a gin and tonic, please.
When you lot go out, this is how you dress?
-What are you dressed for right now?
-Do you always wear a tie?
-Not always, no.
-Do you mind taking it off? Bet you don't get many girls asking you to take it off.
Thank you. I want you to take one hand at one end of the tie, the other hand on the other end.
Without letting go, I want you to tie a knot right in the middle.
So, in the end, it's gonna look... just like that.
-Without letting go?
-Without letting go.
How many knots do you want?
How many knots can you give me?
-I'll be impressed if you do one, but if you can do two, go for it.
Tie a knot.
-What's that? No, a knot!
-I'm getting there!
-That's not a knot.
OK, that's fine.
-Can I use my teeth?
-Er, if you want.
And, it's... It's... Ah, no, that was cheating because you grabbed another end.
-And it didn't work anyway.
-It's not it.
You know what? I don't think you can do it.
OK. If I can do it, how about you buy me a drink?
-I would love to.
-You'd love to buy me a drink...
-..if I can do it?
-You can't let go.
-Can't let go.
So, I'm going to have one hand, like you did, and the other, like you did.
-I'm not going to let go.
-Oh, I get you.
And there is your...
-A gin and tonic, please.
It's simple. Jess started with her arms crossed, and picked up each end of the tie.
Then she uncrossed her arms to produce the knot...
and a free drink.
Getting a good exchange rate on your foreign currency
makes all the difference to your holiday spending money.
So if the rate was, say, 25 yen to one pound,
and someone offered you 50 yen to one pound, you'd be mad not to take it...wouldn't you?
Right next door to London Stansted is this busy airport hotel.
With an exclusive travellers' bar, and eye-catching aerial acrobatics,
it's the perfect setting for...
the Currency Swindle.
With such unusual entertainment on offer,
it's not hard for Paul to strike up a conversation with some strangers.
You seen this?
Cool little find, this place. If you ever use the airport, this is the place to come and wait.
I'm just going back up to Glasgow.
Unfortunately, I'm stuck here until my friend arrives.
Now that Paul has got two new friends, it's time for his old friends -
businessman Alex and his girlfriend, Jess, to make their entrance.
They're here to do a little business deal with Paul.
-Took your time.
-Sorry, yeah. I got a flight. Good to see you.
-How are you?
Where you off to?
-We're going to Geneva.
Pleasantries over, it's time for...
What've we got? I got 600.
-Oh, that's good. Yeah, OK. Cool.
-Can you get any more?
-Because I've actually got 52,000 yen here.
That's 1,000. Well, it's 2,000, but I'm...doing it for 1,000.
The marks can't help overhearing that sums of money are being discussed.
Alex is offering to sell Paul Japanese yen at an amazing exchange rate.
-The exchange rate's 25.012...
-I'll do it for 50.
-Do it for 50?
If you'd told me that on the phone, I would have tried to get more.
-Can't you get some more?
-ATM, that's all it's going to give me.
As luck would have it, Alex is in possession of more foreign currency than Paul can afford to buy.
If only there was someone else nearby with money in their pockets, up for making a quick yen.
You're not travelling to Japan any time soon, are you?
Well, look, here's the deal...
Now, to rope the marks in, and give them...
I've just come home from Japan, cos I work for a big investment bank.
Believe it or not, they're still giving us a lot of money to go out and do business with.
-If I go and change it at the exchange place, they ask for passports...
-If I leave a paper trail that I've changed that money back, I can get into trouble with my employer.
So, what I'm trying to do with my friend, Paul, here...
The exchange rate at the moment is 25 yen to one pound.
-I'm happy to do it...
-You giving us 50?
-50 for one pound, so double it up.
It would seem like everyone's a winner here.
Alex gets to keep some of his leftover business expenses,
without leaving a paper trail which could get him in trouble with his boss.
And the marks get Japanese yen at half price, which they can exchange back into pounds,
effectively doubling their money.
But, to make sure the marks buy in, they first need...
-Have you got the exchange rates on that thing? Can you get them?
Just so you see I'm not messing with you.
Paul shows the marks a currency-exchange website on his mobile phone.
They can clearly see today's rate is 25 yen to one pound.
-What website are you on there?
-Well that's up to date, yeah.
You're making two-to-one.
You know what? Times are hard.
The marks want in.
How much cash have you got on you?
Yeah, yeah, that's fine.
-That's 11,500. What I'll do is I'll give you ...
-Give them 12,000.
Alex even rounds it up to the nearest thousand.
The marks have got themselves a great deal.
Who's going to hold the cash?
Do it separately...
They hand over £230 to a guy they've just met in a bar.
-Right. Can we shoot?
-Yeah, we have to.
As soon as the deal is done, Alex and Jess leave. After all, they've got a plane to catch.
-Have a good holiday.
I'm going to change that and get my flight.
And it's not long before Paul also says sayonara to his new friends.
And it's about to get a whole lot worse, when she discovers what her fistful of yen is really worth.
-Yeah, it's a really good deal.
They was really nice to do that, really, to be honest.
We expect to make at least 420...
He showed us the exchange rate on the thing, so...cool.
-What website are you on there?
-Well, that's up to date, yeah.
Of course, you shouldn't always trust what you see on the internet.
That currency website was knocked up by the hustlers themselves.
And 25 yen to one pound is probably the worst exchange rate in history...
as the marks could have discovered in any current newspaper.
Is that what the exchange rate is today?
This is worth £75.
So the marks haven't doubled their money. In fact, they're £150 down on the deal.
We've been mugged off.
I can't even talk...
Never get involved in any sort of deal that you haven't organised yourself
and especially with people that you've never met before.
You should always buy your foreign money either from a reputable currency exchange or a bank.
Subtitles by Zoe Short Red Bee Media Ltd
E-mail [email protected]
A team of hustlers - Alexis Conran, Paul Wilson and Jessica Clement - expose the scams that cheat tourists and travellers out of their holiday money.
Alex steals a 35,000-pound hire car in under ten minutes using just a hi-vis jacket and a clipboard, and the hustlers rip off airport passengers by selling them foreign currency at a suspiciously good exchange rate.