man rich travel shopping

As the date for our trip draws closer, I cannot stop talking about it. Most people, I am sure, wish that I would give it a rest. I am just so excited. I actually cannot believe it is going to happen. There are still bumps in the road with the planning, like an Airbnb cancelling on us out of the blue last night. What?! The only reason was that we did not meet the terms of agreement. Well, we have been booked for over a month soooooo . . . anyway, we soldiered on and booked what seems like an even better place.

Lately, as I continue my research on the Internet about places and things to see and travel tips, I keep coming across the subject of pickpockets. Now, I already knew something about the problem, but it seems worse in certain areas. Many travelers have various tips which sound like my wife and I have to walk around places like Paris and Rome with our backpacks strapped to our chest, heads on a swivel. We have traveled to large cities in the United States many times. Surely, it cannot be as bad as what I am reading. I mean for goodness sake we are not going to walk around with Euros hanging out from every pocket or waving them over our head. One traveler even mentioned strong-arm robberies! No, we do not plan on walking around in “seedy” areas, but where is all of this coming from? Being by myself, I would not give this a second thought. Having my wife with me very much heightens my security radar.

Here are a few of my concerns:

  • Backpacks or fanny packs or front pockets?
  • Any reason to carry cash at all?
  • Where are most extreme places, in areas like Rome and Paris?
  • How secure do we have to secure our bikes?

These are just off the top of my head. I do not play the victim very well, but it could get very ugly if the security of my wife is of concern. No, I do not attract attention or plan on taking on gang of thugs, but I am not one to roll over very easily. I am pretty sure that we will stay in “touristy” areas 99% of the time. It is not like we will be strolling through a village in Iran at 1AM, but I like having as much knowledge and insider information as I can. After all, all we want is to enjoy our visits and make memories.

Bon Vélo!

4 thoughts on “#Pickpockets

  1. The touristy areas can be the worst! 😉 That’s where the easy money is for the pickpockets and gypsies. The seedy places can actually be safer from scams and attacks. As long as you’re smart about it, stay alert and be sensible then you shouldn’t have any issues.

    My wife and I travelled extensively through Europe through some pretty seedy places as well as the tourist-packed hot spots and stated safe. My number one rules is to stay aware of your surroundings!

    The usual stuff like don’t keep your wallet in your back pocket, don’t wear expensive jewellery and don’t hang a top-line dSLR camera around your neck apply! Just try not to look as much of an easy target as everyone else. Also, nothing is free. If somebody offers you something or tries to put something in your hand, tie something around your wrist, etc then do not let them! But this shouldn’t happen if you’re following rule number one.

    Notre Dame (maybe not now) and Sacre Coeur were hot spots for tourist crime when I visited Paris.

  2. Common sense applies. I’ve travelled extensively, in relatively unusual places as well as “normal” ones. Never been pickpocketed.

    Don’t let worry spoil your enjoyment. Keep an eye on your phone and wallet, keep your passports on your person, don’t wear jewellery or a fancy watch and get a good lock for your bike.

    I bet walking through an Iranian village at 01:00 would be quite relaxed 😂

    In Paris there’s quite a few gypsies in jardin des tuileries (concorde side) and ar du triomphe. But nothing to worry about.

    Top tip for Paris: if you’re visiting the Louvre, enter at the porte des lions, not the pyramid. You’ll skip all the queues (crazy long). And if you go on the first Sunday of the month, the museum is entirely free.

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