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Beware of prom/wedding season scammers

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (April 9, 2015) - Spring Break is here, and for some that means prom season is around the corner. For others, spring means wedding season.

Planning for prom or a wedding takes time, from the dress and caterer, to the photographer, florist and limo.

But one mistake can ruin the day, so experts say customers should do their homework.

One expense that experts say customers should check up front is a limo.

“We get a lot of reports where either limos don’t show up or they don’t provide the service, or in some cases the person will be overcharged,” said Tim Maniscalo with the Better Business Bureau of Central Indiana.

The BBB says customers should ask for references and know the cost and cancellation policy before paying.

“The worst case scenario, really, is that limo doesn’t show up, and then your special night or your special day is ruined,” Maniscalo said.

That’s one piece of the pie, but the largest expense is often the dress.

To save money, many prom goers or brides-to-be look online, where scammers, many based in China, offer designer knock offs at low prices.

Before falling victim, experts say customers should read a site’s reviews.

“Just do your homework up front,” Maniscalo said. “I think that’s the best thing that a consumer can do.”

Florists and caterers also come with a warning.

“All of those are great services for your big day, but you just want to check those places out and also book them ahead of time,” he said.

If you have problems, contact the Better Business Bureau of Central Indiana.