After traveling all of my life, I recently experienced a purse theft while in the Rome, Italy at the train station. Yes, I understand that you’re probably thinking “why is she writing this article then?” These things happen and I know better than being distracted or as carefree as I was. Thankfully, I am safe and was not held up or killed for my belongings. One of my grandmothers had her purse stolen off of her arm to the point of a broken arm. People can be vicious, especially if they think we are vulnerable. And sometimes when we travel, we are very vulnerable. While I still don’t think of my situation as “being vulnerable”, thieves thought otherwise.
Here are ways that we can prevent theft while traveling worldwide:
- Make eye contact. When you think you’re being watched, make eye contact with the potential predator. Even if you’re wrong, it’s okay to be cautious and let the person know they have been seen.
- Take a photo of a potential thief and send it to someone. Make it known that you know they are there. And that you’re aware of their presence; this alone will scare off most predators.
- Maintain your personal space. Sometimes maintaining personal space part can be the most difficult but find a way to step away from the crowd or even turn around to make eye contact if you feel like you’ve been followed. In New York City and even Miami, I have turned around and asked, “can I help you?” to a person that I felt like may have been following me.
- Pull up addresses and directions. Get your act together before reaching public forums such as train stations, taxi cab line, or the street, pull up directions or addresses to avoid appearing distracted or
- Don’t be distracted. Avoid playing games, checking emails, or doing unnecessary things while you’ve got luggage or a purse with you. When I got robbed, I had consumed wine on the trip so I was probably not as alert as I normally would have been.
Cheers to your safety! May you never experience wasting precious moments on robbery or police report while traveling locally or abroad!
P.S. If there are additional tips that you recommend, please comment below. You never know when your comments could save a life or someone a lot of trouble.