Mini Guide To Tourist Scams-Chapter 1
Our excitement knows no boundaries when we finalize a trip, especially to another country. After all, the world is a beautiful place and who wouldn’t like to admire its beauty? However, we forget that the same world is not a kind place as well to live in.
We are so impressed by the picturesque views, famous folklore, finger licking food, a magnificent cathedral, engaging festivals, medieval towns, exquisite beaches, snow-capped mountains and many more things of a country, but you also know that no country is perfect.
And this reminds me of different scams that tourists face in different countries.
So, here are few countries where certain tourist scams are quite (in)famous among other things:-
(I will be covering the topic of tourist scam in few chapters)
- Spain is home to Barcelona, the pickpocket capital of Europe. Scammers can part your wallet away from you even in restaurants. They, disguised as waiters, will bend and ask for how food tastes, and if there is any valuable lying on table or lap, they will easily take it. (Pickpocket scam is famous in many countries across many continents).
- Then there is taxi tourist scam where a driver will convince you to make the prepayment and then stop in the middle saying he or she cannot continue the ride and return you a counterfeit bill.
- The street game spam has spread its root across Europe. Under this, you have to find a pea kept under one of the three cups. If you guess correctly, you win double money. You will see other people (scammer) playing and winning and will be tempted to join in but guess what ,unlike this cat, you will never win!
- You need to be careful with the change. If a cashier is counting it slowly then maybe he is expecting that you are in hurry and will leave with your change without counting it.
- Someone in the crowd might spill fake pigeon poop on your dress. The scammer will offer help to clean it and eventually he will pawn your pocket.
- You will also meet some so-called helpful locals. They will warn you to keep your wallet in a safe place and then steal it from the place where you ‘carefully’ stashed it. They will offer help even with ATM, but the truth is they are only after your PIN. You may also meet thieves disguised as drivers who will try to rescue you from a flat tire.
- If you think only adults are into this practice then think again. Teenagers with big eyes, troubled expressions, torn & shabby clothes will come to you with a pity message on cardboard. You will make a fool of yourself by considering them beggars, and you will not even come to know when did they slip that hand in your pocket and got away with money.
- You have got to be really careful with other’s (yes, not yours) phone or camera. A person will come to you with his/her camera and ask you take pictures. When you will hand over the gadget back, the other person will fumble and drop it. Eventually, you will be asked to pay for its repair (never do that) or he/ she will lift your wallet when you will bend to pick up the broken gadget.
- Amongst locals & tourists, you never know you get to meet fake police as well! A person asks you for direction, you help him or her and later fake police come ordering you to get your wallet check as the person you just helped is known for spreading fake money. On showing them the wallet, they will nick a bill or two (without you realizing it).
P.S.:- This fake police game is famous across the world!
- Last but not the least on the list is ‘stripper show’. You will see a show, a sassy lady arguing with a street vendor. The vendor will be accusing her of shoplifting and she denying it vehemently. In order to prove that she is innocent, she will slowly start to take off her clothes. Once she will be down to her underwear, the vendor will apologize, she will be gone and so will your wallets (Kudos to the team of pickpockets).