Pickpockets in Barcelona and Backpack snatched in Seville train station
Replies: 14 - Last Post: Feb 3, 2013 12:29 PM Last Post By: almondy23
Jan 29, 2013 10:02 PM
Pickpockets in Barcelona and Backpack snatched in Seville train stationDo take note when you are traveling in the metro station, aware of persons who tries to be friendly. In Barcelona metro train, a Muslim mother allowed the child to walk around while the train was moving. Then as we were going out near Barcelona/S. Familia metro , the Muslim lady who then carried the child squeezed in-between and pick pocketed my husband's stomach pouch.
Additionally when I was in Madrid, a lady smile and ask me for directions in the metro station, while her hand was opening the zip of my bag. Quickly, I managed to move away and realize that my bag was already half opened.
On Christmas Day 2012, we were in Seville train station, a gentlemen distracted my husband while his male friend grab my husband's back pack and ran. We were in Mc Donalds buying lunch. We lost all out photos 1500 of them as camera and SD cards there inside the bag.
Suggest that if you can check into the train check-in instead of hanging outside if possible to avoid these incidents in the train station.
Just a note to all .....to be aware! Spread you belonging....& backup your photos....:)
Jan 30, 2013 12:03 AM
Jan 30, 2013 12:49 AM
2They all seem to have happened at train stations. That makes sense, as the OP and partner may have looked a little lost. The trick is to appear confident, then you're less of a magnet for thieves.
But it can happen anywhere - I've been pick-pocketed twice, less than a mile from my home, in crowds, so it's a timely warning and reminder.
Sorry to hear about your photos, Traveluck. :>(
Jan 30, 2013 12:51 AM
Jan 30, 2013 12:58 AM
Jan 30, 2013 1:01 AM
5Anyway...the message to be aware is a good one,and so too the one to back up your photos (my memory card broke last year in New York and I lost about 500).
Hope you have more luck next time in Spain.
Like #1,I've never had any problems there (and I've spent months there,on various trips),but clearly it does happen to some people.....
Jan 30, 2013 1:19 AM
6I have never had problem in Spain either, although the other week whilst in Granada an Aussie girl was buying a bus ticket at an automatic machine leaving her bag wide open and belongings on view, the invite was accepted by a someone, luckily for the girl i noticed and stopped it. This can happen anywhere it is not really worth posting about but what i am getting at is that sometimes travellers forget their own wisdom whilst travelling, you should espeically in a city always be vigilant you would do it at home!
Jan 30, 2013 2:36 AM
Jan 30, 2013 2:50 AM
Jan 30, 2013 3:56 AM
Jan 30, 2013 4:02 AM
10I also did not experience any pickpocketing/bag snatch whiles in Spain for 4 weeks. However I am a fairly seasoned traveller and am quite aware of situations that the OP described so have avoided such problems.
I am surprised that the OP has had it happened 3 times - perhaps it's the vibes the OP was giving off to the thieves, map in hand, looking lost etc etc.
Anyhow, I am sorry that it has happened but now you are that little wiser! Good luck!
Jan 30, 2013 4:13 AM
I saw a documentary on Discovery Channel -- Scam City. One episode was set in Barcelona. A pickpocket team was interviewed and even filmed in action. They are very businesslike about it, and it was very interesting to see and hear them discuss people in the subway station, who are the easy targets.
Actually, anyone can do this. Stand around for a while and watch, just like richiavo describes in #6. You can spot the ones who are inviting trouble. The people who do this for a living are very good at spotting the easy targets.
It might sound mean, but when I tell people who post these hard-luck stories to not give warnings about the place, but to focus more on what they are or are not doing, that's the reason why. Something about their behavior might be inviting the attention.
Jan 30, 2013 4:44 AM
12Money belts are the way to go. I have only ever met one person who has ever had their money belt stolen. He was an English guy on holiday wuth his sister in Koh Samui, Thailand. He was drunk at a bar and was dancing with a ladyboy whom had befriended him and his sister. Dance finished, moneybelt gone and friendly ladyboy never to be seen again.
Jan 30, 2013 4:45 AM
13When I was in Spain I went up to a couple of people who were doing something, ...while their stuff was unattended. When you have more then one bag and you're trying to buy a ticket or read a timetable or otherwise distracted...it only takes a second to become vulnerarable.
Feb 3, 2013 12:29 PM
14#13 is spot-on. Its very easy to avoid being pick-pocketed, happened to me 3 times in Sth America within 2 months, 6 years ago, and then never again.
1.) Appear confident, pick-pocketers target those that look clueless, ie, vulnerable. Even looking around you is enough to deter thieves.
2.) Keep your wallet in a front pocket, zippered side pocket or money belt, never in a back pocket! Small backpackers on your front, big packpacks behind locked; a backpack cover provide an extra layer of skin.
3.) And always, if someone in the street, bus, train, etc, appears to be brushing up against you for any reason, no matter if its a women with a child or old man, instinctively put your hands/eyes on your pocket.
That documentary 'Scam City' on Barcelona shows clearly how those who got pick-pocketed where the ones that didn't do any of the above, and made themselves most vulnerable. The thieves themselves in the doc said they automatically forget about someone who looks aware as to what's happening around them.
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