Tips & Hacks

How to Avoid Pickpockets: 10 Things Helping Thieves Spot a Careless Tourist in You

Whichever country you travel to, there’ll always be people eager to make your wallet lighter: enter the street thieves. These guys are really fond of tourists as they are usually the easiest and the most profitable victims. How to avoid pickpockets when you go traveling?

Unless you want to absolutely ruin your vacation, check the list below and take necessary precautions.

These are the signs that give away a careless tourist in you, telling thieves you might be an easy target:

1. You’re looking at a map all the time

How to avoid pickpockets: Tourist with a map

There can be no better present for the street thieves than a dump lost tourist who is constantly looking at the map.

If you do so, sooner or later someone will offer you their help. These people may really wish you well, but they can also be robbers who just want to take advantage of a clueless tourist.

2. You’re wearing a travel wallet on your waist

Tourist with moneybelt

The worst place to keep your money while traveling is a special travel wallet that is usually attached to a belt. This is just like showing a red rag to an ox which says, “Hey! Come and take my money, this is where I store it!”

Have you seen many native citizens in your home city wearing such kind of thing? Hardly any. So be smart and keep your cash and bank cards in places that are hard to get to.

3. Your face is a different color than locals

Tourist and locals

Well, there’s nothing you can do about it, let’s say, if you’re a European traveling to Africa or Asia. Or if you’re a Chinese visiting Paris.

In most cases, you’ll definitely look like a tourist to the locals. So the prices will inevitably be higher and persuasions more persistent.

4. A pretty local girl is flirting with you

Don't flirt with locals

Do you often get attention from pretty girls at home? If you do, then you’re probably Don Juan and then everything is fine. But if you don’t, then you’d better try to get rid of her as soon as you can, because there’s a high chance that this is a group of scammers trying to seduce and rob you.

5. You’re out all alone

Solo traveler

Well, this is true not only about foreign cities, but about your native place of living as well. The chances to be robbed in the street get definitely higher if you walk alone all the time. Better travel with a friend or a relative. Or if you can’t find yourself a travel company, make some acquaintances in the hotel.

6. You’re wearing expensive jewellery

Wearing expensive jewellery in a trip is not safe

Jewellery is always precious for robbers, so you’d better not put on yourself any rubies or diamonds that you’re not ready to lose. It doesn’t mean that you definitely will, but there is always a chance, so it’s better not to tempt the robbers and the fate.

7. You’re drunk

Don't get drunk

If you are drunk in crowded places, then you become an easy target for robbers of all sorts. They can talk you into giving your money to them or simply take it from you in the way that you won’t even notice because you’ll be hardly standing on your feet and you won’t even thick of how to avoid pickpockets at that time.

If you definitely plan to drink alcohol on your trip, better do it inside the hotel and ask your friends not to let you out unless you get back to your normal state.

8. You’re riding in a crowded bus

Crowded bus

Or any other type of public transport. It’s a perfect place for pickpockets to improve their wealth. When there’re so many people around you that it’s even hard to move, you’d better watch out for your wallet.

9. You’ve got cash, and lots of it

Cash in travel is dangerous

If a robber steals your credit card, he may find it difficult to monetize as he doesn’t know your pin-code (unless you have a pay-pass option). But if you carry cash with you, once again, watch out!

10. You’re staying in a hotel room together with your casual companions

Casual acquaintances

The best rule for all the times is do not trust casual acquaintances. You may chat carelessly with them during the day and tell them all your secrets and in the morning you can find them gone together with your wallet.

How to not become a thief’s victim

How not to become a thief's victim

It’s no doubt that traveling abroad is dangerous and there is always a chance that you will be robbed. But don’t despair, your life is still in your hands and you can take some precautions to avoid becoming a victim of a thief.

Always keep in mind these simple tips whenever you’re traveling abroad:

Don’t look like a tourist

Try to become as much alike locals as possible, as robbers are really fond of tourists’ bags.

Stay cautious at all times

Yes, it may be difficult when you are in a foreign town and you have so much information and new impressions splashing down on you. But it’s either staying alert or losing your money or a cellphone.

And finally,

Never be alone in the crowd

If you have a choice, try not to travel alone in the crowded places. Better take your friend or relatives with you on a trip or find a companion on the way. The more people you have in your company, the higher your chances to spot a robber.

That’s it for our guide to how not to become an easy target for a thief and how to avoid pickpockets. Do you have something to add to it? Share your tips and experience and tell us what you do to prevent yourself from being robbed on a trip. Also, check out quick guide to finding the best luggage for your travels.

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