If you’re traveling abroad, you should be aware of the potential risks of being picked-pocketed. Most pickpockets target tourists, so be especially aware of tourist attractions. The Eiffel Tower, Louvre, and the Puces de Saint-Ouen are among the most popular pickpocket targets, and you should be especially cautious while using public transportation or purchasing souvenirs. Museums, too, are prime targets for pickpockets. If you don’t keep your purse or backpack on you, pickpockets will steal it from you.
Oftentimes, a tourist will have more valuables than a local. They might have an expensive camera or phone, and cash. A nice watch can also be a tempting prize for a pickpocket. Also, tourists are prone to becoming a victim of mob tactics, so they may approach you with attractive women or a child. When interacting with children, you should always remain vigilant.
Being vigilant is the best defense against pickpockets. If you are alert, the pickpockets might not risk robbing you. They view distracted people as “good clients” and are less likely to target you. One Japanese tourist was robbed while visiting the Spanish Steps because he thought a group of Italians were waving to him. His attention was distracted, and he fell victim to a scam that cost him more than $1000.
Buses and subways that cover popular tourist attractions are prime picking grounds for pickpockets. Be vigilant and wear your day bag against your chest instead of being slung over one shoulder. Be aware of the fact that some thieves lurk near subway turnstiles. They could pick your pocket or run off into the subway. Stay alert and careful with your valuables, and you’ll stay safe and unnoticed.
Don’t be fooled by the fawning crowds. Pickpockets are often teenage girls or Bosnians. They might pose as a tourist or a normal person, and it’s difficult to detect them in the crowd. If you think your bag or purse is empty, don’t open it. It may be easy to be distracted by a fake survey or petition.
It’s always best to remain vigilant and assertive while traveling overseas. Being assertive will deter pickpockets from targeting you. Keep your backpack tightly around your body and avoid displaying excessive cash. Try not to carry too much cash and don’t wear expensive jewelry, as this suggests you have valuables in your purse. Suze Orman recommends keeping your wallet hidden and out of sight.
The best way to protect yourself from pickpockets is to keep valuables out of sight. Never put your wallet in your pants’ back pocket, nor place your wallet inside your inner or outer pocket. You should also cover it with other items, such as your phone and camera. Try to stay focused on the tourist landmarks instead of letting your purse or backpack fall into the wrong hands. The more you focus on the things that interest you, the less vulnerable you will be.