Soon, if not already here

#1 Oct 6th, 2013, 17:05
Join Date:
Oct 2012
Location:
currently in transit
Posts:
4,195
  • adam00121 is offline
#1
Source : NDTV
Link : http://www.sfgate.com/travel/rickste...ms-4866802.php

Including the whle article by Rcik Steeves, who writes European travel guidebooks and hosts travel shows on public television and public radio. Email him at rick@ricksteves.com

Quote:
The Louvre is Europe's oldest, biggest, greatest, and second-most-crowded museum (after the Vatican). It's home to Mona Lisa, Venus de Milo, Michelangelo statues, and paintings by the greatest artists from the Renaissance to the Romantics. Lately it is also home to groups of pickpockets. It got so bad that recently the museum staff walked out in protest. The Louvre had to close for a day, and the management finally beefed up police patrols.

Europe is a surprisingly creative place when it comes to petty thievery and travel scams. Tourists, especially Americans, are an easy target. Be on guard — even at church. St. Mark's Basilica in Venice attracts tourists and pickpockets alike. Loaded down with valuables, jetlagged, and bumbling around in a strange new environment, we stick out like jeweled thumbs. If I were a European thief, I'd specialize in Americans — my card would say "Yanks R Us."

But scams can be avoided. Smart travelers are less likely to be victims, so be aware of these travel scams, which I've been tracking thanks to my readers and my European travel guides.

Rotator Bluff: You're going through a London subway turnstile and someone is pressing right behind you. You feel something in your pocket, but by the time you turn around, it's already too late — the thief throws your wallet to his accomplice on the other side of the machines. You're stuck on the wrong side of the turnstile, and both thieves have disappeared into the crowd.

The Attractive Flirt or New "Friend": You're a single male traveler who is suddenly approached by a gorgeous woman on the street. After chatting for a while, she seductively invites you for a drink at a nearby nightclub. But when the bill arrives, it's several hundred dollars more than you expected. Only then do you notice the burly bouncers guarding the exits — so you have to pay up. There are several variations on this scam. Sometimes the scam artist is disguised as a lost tourist or a gregarious local who (seemingly) just wants to show you his city. Regardless, be suspicious when invited for a drink by someone you just met; if you want to go out together, suggest a bar (or café) of your choosing instead.

Slow Count: Cashiers who deal with lots of tourists thrive on the "slow count." Even in banks, they'll count your change back with odd pauses in hopes that you'll gather up the money early and say "Grazie." Waiters seem to be arithmetically challenged. If you have to use a large bill to make a small payment, clearly state the value of the bill as you hand it over. Some waiters or cabbies will pretend to drop a large bill and pick up a hidden small one in order to shortchange a tourist. Get familiar with the currency and check the change you're given.

The Well-Dressed Thief: The sneakiest pickpockets look like well-dressed businesspeople, generally with something official-looking in their hand. Some pose as tourists with daypacks, cameras, and even guidebooks. Don't be fooled by looks, impressive uniforms, femme fatales, or hard-luck stories. Don't hand your wallet to anyone, especially not to fake police who want to "check it for counterfeit money."

The Shell Game: Avoid any gambling on the street. The classic shell game comes with a shill who wins money easily. Then it's your turn. Believe it or not, there are enough idiots on the street to keep these con men in business.

Good Luck and Good Love: In many countries colorfully dressed women are notorious for aggressively approaching the unknowing tourist with friendship bracelets or sprigs of rosemary. They'll tell you your fortune and promise you a wonderful love life. Then they'll demand money and refuse coins (bad luck), so the confused tourist gives paper money. This can also lead to a commotion where their children will gather around and suddenly everyone's gone and all your zippers are down. It's best to just stay away from any seemingly spontaneous interaction like this on the streets.

The Excuse Me Spill: A popular con is when someone squirts your shirt with gunk and then tells you it's bird poop. While she helps clean it up, an accomplice lifts your purse or backpack.

And the list goes on and on. Scams can be easy to avoid if you recognize them and stay aware. Assume any commotion is created by thief teams to create a cover for their work. Wear a money belt to protect yourself against pickpockets, and leave your fancy bling at home.

Above all, enjoy your trip. Don't travel fearfully — travel smartly. Scam artists come in all shapes and sizes, but if you're cautious and not overly trusting, you'll marvel at how easy it is to have a fun and hassle-free vacation.
#2 Oct 6th, 2013, 19:29
Join Date:
Aug 2010
Location:
United States
Posts:
4,418
  • DaisyL is offline
#2
Thanks, Adam - it's always good to be aware of the scams before you are in the middle of one.
#3 Oct 6th, 2013, 20:44
Join Date:
Oct 2004
Location:
Chennai, India
Posts:
68,297
  • Nick-H is offline
#3
Good grief, it is dangerous out there on the street. Maybe I'll just stick to the internet.

Hmmm, this email looks like good news! It seems I've won a lot of money in a Nigerian lottery...
#4 Oct 8th, 2013, 11:06
Join Date:
Oct 2012
Location:
currently in transit
Posts:
4,195
  • adam00121 is offline
#4
There are visible damage and then there are hidden damages. the visible ones, like the lottery ones can end just by a delete of the mail. I have had to talk one person out of replying to such mails, and he was an well educated and someone in a very high post too. He had enough brains to understand my lecture.

How does one handle the invisible monsters?


Posting Rules

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
Forum Rules»
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.3.2
© IndiaMike.com 2017
Page Load Success