Heading overseas soon? We will share some of our encounters below, and things to take note of staying safe traveling in Europe, whether you are a solo traveler or in a group.
Always remember to avoid wearing flashy jewelry, holding your camera and smartphone when you are not using it.
Everyone would like to get the perfect picture when traveling or even be amazed at the surroundings, however, when we are distracted, it will be the best chance for pickpockets or scammers. Hence, it will be good to keep a distance from strangers coming near you (It might sound unfriendly but we have to protect ourselves some way or another. Sometimes your 6th sense might work if you feel you are in an unfavorable situation.)
Please be vigilant wherever you are, put in extra effort to stay safe is important.
We also love to hear from you if you have any encounter to share with us.
Illegal Street Vendors
There are a lot of illegal street vendors in Europe selling souvenirs like key chains, bracelets, etc. The vendors are persistent to sell you the items, remember to avoid getting too close to them or having any conversations by walking away briskly.
We have heard about how notorious the pickpockets are in certain cities eg. Paris, Barcelona. Therefore, it is important that we do not hold our cash in one place. Always split your money and credit cards into various pockets. We do not carry a wallet in Europe. This is to avoid having the wallet being snatched or picked.
Sharing our encounters in a few cities
Barcelona – Our travel mate had her bag opened, but she was lucky that nothing was stolen.
Paris – Witnessed a man stole a magazine from a newspaper stand at Gare du Nord.
People imposing themselves as police and asking for ID. As travelers or tourists, most of the time we could not identify the local policemen uniform or how their security ID looks like. Therefore, please stay alert and be careful when this happen.
Never did I expect myself to had this experience despite reading about this online from other travelers. Being a solo traveler in Paris, I was at the Paris metro on my way to change to another train when a person called out to me claiming he was police. I took a look at the person blankly and walked away. The person did not try to call out or follow me when I left. Therefore, I concluded this person is a scammer. When I think about it now, what would have happened if this person is a real police? I would have gotten myself into trouble.