A rental car shortage is causing prices to skyrocket, and scammers have found a clever way to cash in.

The Better Business Bureau Scam Tracker is receiving reports of con artists impersonating rental car company representatives. They claim to be able to get you a deal on your rental, but it’s really a way to trick you into paying hundreds of dollars for a car that doesn’t exist.

How the scam works

You search for a rental car company online and dial the phone number that appears at the top of the results. A “customer service representative” answers and explains that you are in luck. The company is offering a special promotion. If you pay for your rental up front using a gift card or prepaid debit card, you can get a significant discount.

It seems odd, but the representative insists that the “deal” is a…

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