Scams and Thieves

Unfortunately there are people all over the world who make their living from scamming  or stealing off the tourist.  I will go over some of the scams I am aware of

The bump, someone will bump you when walking by, or when you are entering a subway or bus, than the next thing you know it your wallet is gone out of your pocket, or if your a woman your wallet is missing from your purse.  The culprits are usually well dressed and professional looking, someone you would never suspect.

The throw the baby on you scam, this usually happens on a busy subway a woman will look at you and throw a baby towards you, your gut reaction is to grab the baby, through the commotion her accomplice will be going through your purse, pocket, or parcels. (the baby is not real)

The throw the pigeon look-alike poop on you or mustard scam, this usually happens when you are walking down the street you will feel something drop on you, than out of no where someone will come along to assist you, well you put your backpack down or your purse an accomplice will come a long and steal it.  This happened to me in Naples, I was aware of the scam  as the girls  came towards me I just put my hand out and said stop.

The press the cardboard into you scam, this is usually done by children and woman, they will be outside of train stations, ATM machines.  They will approach you begging for money, as they are doing this, they will press a cardboard into your tummy.  You will feel the cardboard and not their hands in your pockets.

The rose scam, a stranger will approach you and pass you a rose and say its a gift for you, and then they will ask you for money, they will follow you and be very persistent.  Most of the time people will just pay them to get rid of them, I myself just throw the rose quickly back at them.

The bracelet scam a stranger will approach you saying he has a gift for you, before you know it he will tie a bracelet on your wrist.  He will tie it on good and strong too, so you cannot get it off.  He will demand money once its on.  I almost fell for this one, until my boyfriend caught on to what he was doing.

The over priced restaurant (the fudged bill), this usually happens in Rome, you will go to a restaurant and will be approached by a server offering you the special, beware you might end up paying a few hundred euro’s for a pasta meal and a glass of wine.  Its a law in Rome all menu’s are to be posted outside the restaurants, if you do not see one posted, keep walking.  If not sure of prices, always ask.  If they come to the tables with extras, like bread or appetizers refuse them, they always cost extra, if you want the bread, ask how much it is.  There is a similar scam in Cuba where they have fake menus for the tourists and overcharge you.

The fake cigar scam, this usually happens in Cuba, any cigar you buy from the street or the beach, there fake, no matter what anyone tells you, they are not real.

Well in Mexico I bought a bunch of silver for myself and family members, it was all fake. Be aware when buying Silver in Mexico.  ( I did buy it from beach vendors, not a jewelry store) If a deal seems to good to be true, it is too good to be real.

Always be alert and aware of your surroundings, keep money safely tucked away, do not carry large sums of money with you.  There are many more scams, I posted the most popular ones.

If you are aware of any scams, please leave a comment to share them with everyone else.

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