Traveling can be a unique experience and it is definitely one that will enrich you spiritually. But make sure it doesn’t make you poorer financially. And I’m not referring here to the price of a vacation. I’m talking about the pickpockets who use their skills in order to leave you without your belongings.
Europe is one of the best places to visit because it has a great cultural diversity and some of the most breathtaking landscapes. But at the same time it also involves various risks in terms of security and protection. The most popular ones are the pickpockets. They know how to get around you and deprive you of your belongings without even knowing it. It’s actually amazing how much dexterity they have and how well they know to do their job. This is why you must be extra careful and learn all you can about their tricks.
What Pickpockets Tricks to Avoid
1. The metro – what environment can be better for thieves that a crowded place at the subway? Usually these thieves form a group of 4-6 children who push you right before the doors shut. They take your things fast and they hop in the train when the doors close. This way it is easier to escape their victim because by the time he or she realizes what has happened the thief is already at the next station.
2. Appearance – it appears that the old saying can be applied here also “looks can be deceiving.” Just because you have a certain image of a thief in your mind it doesn’t necessarily mean that it fits reality. Thieves seek to blend into the crowd. This means that they will be dressed just as you and me without attracting attention. And you know for sure they can change their outfit often because they probably have more money.
3. Bag help – you might carry a lot of bags and someone (with a good heart) might offer to help you with them. Don’t get fulled by this. While a person helps you with your bags, their friends reach into your bag and steal whatever they can. Don’t get me wrong, some people might actually be nice enough to help you with your suitcase or luggage but they will ask first. And even so, I would keep my eye on them!
4. ATM tricks – there have been numerous stories related to the tricks that can be used in this case. They usually act in groups and they wait until you are ready to withdraw money. Then one of them distracts you and the other one selects the maximum of cash that can be withdrawn, takes the money and leaves. Or they sometimes keep an eye on you when you type your PIN code and then try to steal your card.
5. The paper trick – this involves any type of paper (magazines, newspapers, etc.) which conceal the hands of the pickpockets while doing their thing. A friend of mind got robbed in Naples by two guys who threatened him by using a knife hidden by a newspaper. As you can imagine the experience is terrifying and it doesn’t give you much time to react. And unfortunately in some parts of Italy even if you react it doesn’t make any difference.
6. The coat trick – probably most of you know this trick because you’ve lived it yourselves. It has never happened to me but I heard a lot of related stories. One person told me that she was at a clothing store with her mother and a woman who was carrying her coat on her arm bumped into her two times. At first it didn’t seem unusual but at the second try she payed more attention but it was already too late. The coat gives a thief the proper hiding place without looking suspicious.
These are the most common tricks in terms of stealing but you should pay extra attention to your belongings when you are in a foreign country. You have to keep up with the latest inventions thieves come up with. And to show you what I’m talking about here is a skillful person in action. Take a look!