In today’s post we want to teach you how to avoid pickpockets in Barcelona so you can have a safe and happy vacation. Photo Credit

Travel safe in Barcelona

Although things are not as bad as they were some years ago, Barcelona is still a big city and you must follow some travel safety rules to avoid bad experiences.

Following a few easy safety tips can help you staying safe and happy throughout your stay, not just in Barcelona: these general safety rules that will also help you avoiding pickpockets in Europe in general.

These are our top safety rules for travel:

Be alert...

Pickpockets are likely to be around in most tourist sites: La Rambla, the squares and streets around the Cathedral and the Picasso Museum, the surroundings of the Sagrada Família church (and even in the spiral stairs of its towers!), the beach (btw, make sure to check out our safety rules for the beach, if you are visiting in the summer), the most popular parks…

Be smart

Use common sense: do not consider the back pocket of your jeans a safe place for your wallet (it’s not!).

Be difficult

How to avoid pickpockets in Barcelona

Pick-pockets prefer easy victims: so make things difficult for them. Carry your bag with the zipper opening facing forward: pickpockets usually operate from behind, so make it difficult for them to reach the opening! A bag with a long strap that you can cross over your chest is always a good idea. My favorite bag to travel safe has a flap over the opening, what makes it even more difficult to pickpocket. And wear your backpack in front of you (or don’t keep anything important inside: they are experts opening backpacks without no one noticing).

Be careful with your belongings

In an outdoors café, never hang your bag from the back of the chair. Keep it always on your lap or between your feet. Or if you drop your bags (while taking a picture, for instance), keep them between your feet so nobody can grab them and run away.

But be relaxed

Pickpockets can sense fear… And they know that if you are scared, that probably means you have something they might want to get! The only time (in 12 years) that I got a client effectively pick-pocketed under my nose was a lady that was totally freaked out about walking around Barcelona. So relax: take precautions, but be cool and confident. After all, you are on holidays! 

AND BONUS! How to avoid pickpockets in the subway:

6   Pickpockets in the subway

Pickpockets work usually in groups in the subway. If you see 3 or 4 young girls (sometimes they might be accompanied by a big man, too), that rather than talking to each other are mostly casting quick looks around them… Be suspicious and get away from them. They usually use the “sandwich” technique: one gets in front of the victim blocking the entrance to the train, while the ones behind pickpocket and run away with the wallet. They usually work in the front and end wagons, as it’s easier to scape to the exit of the stations: that makes middle wagons safer. Inside the wagon, try to seat rather than stand (or stand against a wall rather than in the middle. And be specially careful when entering and exiting the train.

Barcelona is a beautiful city to enjoy: have fun with your sightseeing and prevent bad experiences by following these simple safety rules.

What about you? What precautions do you take to travel safe?

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