Pickpockets

Budapest-pickpocketsAs in most big cities that attract many tourists, like Barcelona or Paris, be on guard for pickpockets in Budapest, especially in the tourist hotspots and busy locations. On tramline 4-6 and the yellow metro line, both widely used by tourists, the police warns often to beware of pickpockets, also on the escalators leading down and coming up from the metro. In the popular nightlife and dining areas, for example the sixth district, the Danube promenade and Vaci Utca, be on guard in busy shops, shopping centers and food markets. And of course at most popular tourist hotspots like  the Matthias Church, Fishermen’s Bastion and Parliament.

When in a restaurant or bar, the smart thing to do is to position your bags in a way that prevents easy access to others. The best way to place your bag is under the table, with the handle around one of the legs of your chair, so it can’t be grabbed easily.

Also be on guard when people on the streets approach you, asking for a light for their cigarette or trying to distract you in any other way, especially if they’re in a pair. Pickpockets also like to strike when tourists are taking pictures, because they’ll be paying less attention to their surroundings and their arms will be up, providing easy access to their pockets and bags.

Needless to say: don’t keep your wallet in the back pocket of your pants and don’t keep your passport in your chest pocket. If you’re going to take public transportation or to a busy tourist attraction, don’t carry all your belongings in a backpack, but leave the things you don’t really need at the hotel room and make sure your valuables are always in (your own) sight. Don’t carry more cash than you need for that day. A bulky wallet is an invitation for pickpockets. But these tips apply to any major city, and not just for tourists.

Find experiences from real victims or post your own story in our Budapest and Hungary Tourist Scams Forum.

 

 

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