The experts all agree that if you want to keep your wallet secure, make sure you always keep it in a front pants pocket (not in your inside jacket pocket or your back pants pocket). Add a thick rubber band around your wallet. The friction of the rubber band against the material of your slacks will alert you that someone is trying to pick it. Never carry all your cash or identification in your wallet, stash some in different locations.
Watch for transition points.
Pickpockets are more likely to get you during a brief confusion, like stepping off of the subway or at the bottom of escalators. This is when they know you are more distracted and will fake a bump into you.
Try to avoid buses and subways that are “standing room only.
Never pat the pocket where your wallet is located you are advertising it’s location.
When buying a snack and a stranger points out the ketchup or mustard on your shirt and helps you clean it up. Don’t be surprised if your money has found a new home.
When a stranger approaches you to ask for directions and you both study the map your money is saying bye bye.
The airport security check point of all places is were you can be targeted. Do not put your valuables on the conveyor belt until you are certain you can walk through the metal detector. If someone suddenly cuts in front of you, Watch out! This common criminal strategy swiftly separates you from your belongings. The line jumper is required to go back and empty his or her pockets. While you are delayed, your belongings travel to the other side of security where, of course, they disappear. This team setup is usually aimed at relieving you of your laptop.
Pack a photocopy of your airline tickets, passport, credit cards and any other documents that would be impossible or inconvenient to replace if stolen.
Keep a list, separate from your wallet, of contact numbers to report lost credit cards.
What if the worst case happens. You are caught in some natural disaster, an earthquake or hurricane for example. Not only are your money and documents gone but the hotel in which you had your copies is a pile of rubble. Before traveling, scan your documents (passport, travelers checks, birth certificate, credit card numbers, vaccination card and airline tickets) and send them to your web based email account such as Google or Hotmail. If your documents are lost, stolen or destroyed you can print them at the embassy, consulate or even in any cybercafe in the world. These copies will assist in getting replacements quickly.
Walk with a purpose. Never look vulnerable or lost. You may be a tourist, but look as though you know where you are going.
Check airport websites so you will know where to go. Strong body language will let criminals know that you are not a victim.
If you are relieved of your possessions.
- Go immediately to the nearest police station to report the theft.
- Make a statement.
- Ask for a written copy of your statement for your insurance company.
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