How to Avoid Pickpockets in Europe

How to avoid pickpockets in Europe

Historic sights, cobblestone streets, delectable cuisine – from the romance of Paris to the ancient walkways of Rome we love to explore every nook and cranny of Europe.

Thankfully Europe is largely safe and stable, making it perfect for city breaks and longer holidays alike. However, the major tourist centres have earned an unfortunate reputation for pickpocketing and many unlucky holidaymakers have found themselves the victims of this sneaky form of theft.

99% of the time, you’ll be fine but a little extra precaution never hurts so follow our top tips for avoiding pickpockets in Europe.

Know the danger zones

Know where you’re going because some areas are higher risk than others. Whether it’s Italy, France, Spain or elsewhere, research the must-see destinations as well as the danger sports. Every European city its safe zones and its streets better avoided. In more sensitive locations, you may need to pay extra attention to your belongings and your surroundings.

This often includes popular squares, markets, public transport and other hotspots where tourist stick out like a sore thumb – and make for perfect targets.

Leave valuables in the hotel

Leaving your valuables in the hotel is always a good idea, especially those hard-to-replace items like your passport, credit cards, and jewellery. Instead of carrying these items around with you making you more vulnerable, leave them in a safe spot in your hotel room.

Wear layers and use inner pockets

Money belts on summer days or inner jacket pockets are a great way to keep your valuables safe. This traveling trick is easy to do when you are wearing layers, during fall or winter and might be uncomfortable when the weather is warm and humid. If you have inner pockets, it will make it a lot harder for pickpockets to reach your valuables!

Watch your things while sitting

When you sit down to eat at a restaurant or on public transport, we often put our bags on the ground by our feet. Secure your items by putting a strap around the leg of the chair or keeping it under the table out of easy access for a passing pickpocket. When you’re distracted by your meal or conversation, it’s easier to fall victim so stay on alert.

And most importantly…

You may never be a victim of pickpocketing, but if you are it’s important to keep things in perspective. Items can be replaced and as long as everyone is safe physically you can still enjoy your trip. It’s terrible when someone steals from you but don’t let them steal your holiday too! While it’s upsetting now, eventually it will all be a memory so focus on the positive memories as much as you can.

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Cassidy Travel - 5 November 2021

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