How to Avoid Pickpockets in Paris: Simple, Useful Tips

Paris Tourist Information aktualisiert am 01/06/2023
pickpockets in Paris in France

Nobody wants to get robbed in the middle of the vacation in the fleeting moment of distraction. Pickpockets are hard to avoid in many cases. They do their best to blend in with their surroundings and stay out of sight.

We have given you some simple tips to avoid pickpockets in Paris in this article. 

What can I do to Avoid Pickpockets?

Paris police warn foreigners against the narrow streets of Monmarte and Pigalle, around the Eiffel Tower and the Gar du Nord station. They say there are thieves around here. Always be alerted in crowded places like public transportations. For example, the Eiffel Tower in Paris welcomes tens of thousands of tourists every day. The Metro Line 6, which runs through the tower, is a high-risk line for this type of crime.

Some strangers can try to make a conversation and be extra chatty to trick tourists.

How to Carry Your Bag

  • We can see the belt bags are back in fashion in the recent years. Although it is a good item to safely carry important items on your travels, it is useful to choose anti-theft models instead of plastic locked ones. They're ideal for short excursions when you won't need something bigger.
  • The smaller the bags, the better. You should keep your bag on your lap especially when you are sitting during breaks instead of hanging or put it on the ground.
  • You can use a safe travel bag that can be buckled as a cross which makes it hard to grab and run. It is the safest way to always carry your personal belongings on you.

How to Carry Your Wallet

  • If you have an outfit with a hidden pocket, keep your wallet there. Pickpockets tend to look in visible places for valuables and money and don't know where to look if the wallet is inside their jacket, in an invisible pocket, or near a breast pocket.
  • A smart way to fool thieves is to carry a fake wallet filled with blank cards and receipts. This can be a bait when someone tries to rub you, just throw your fake wallet on the ground and run. But do not encourage pickpockets to come close to you by carrying your fake wallet visible.
  • Always keep your wallet in your front pocket. Using a velcro or fabric wallet instead of smooth leather is much more better as they're difficult to remove unnoticed.

Being Alert to Some Well-Known Methods

  • Take what you need and leave the rest in the hotel safe. Before you go out, put your passport, house keys, excess money and expensive jewelry in the safe and lock it.
  • As a traveler, we often feel the need to use mobile phone naturally to find directions or take photos. Although don't let your phone distract you for a long time. If you must take out your phone, hold it firmly with both hands and don't look at it for more than 5-10 seconds at a time.
  • To withdraw money, prefer calmer places such as restaurants and hotels that are not much crowded. 

FAQ - Frequently Asked Questions

What should ı do if ı become a victim of pickpocketing in Paris?

If you become a victim of pickpocketing and lose your passport or wallet while traveling abroad, visit your country's embassy. They will help you confirm your identity and return to your country.

Is pickpocketing a common problem in Paris?

Unfortunately, like many other touristic cities pickpocketing remains as a problem in Paris, especially in crowded areas like the Metro and popular tourist attractions such as the Eiffel Tower and the Sacré Coeur in Montmartre.

Which areas are most likely to get pick pocketed in Paris?

It is better to be extra careful at  places around major tourist sites: such as the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, and the Champs-Elysées. Foreigners in Paris should be alert to thieves who commonly work near tourist attractions such as museums, monuments, restaurants, hotels, beaches, trains, train stations, airports, subways and target vehicles with non-local license plates.

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