How it works:
- Two versions: strike and run; distract and grab. Possible scenarios:
- Bike/moped: riding past with a pillion rider doing the snatch.
- Bar, restaurant: stealing unattended bags/valuables on the chair or table; knocking on the window seemingly to ask about the time to distract you.
- Hotel, airport: where distracted/tired tourists carry all their valuables out.
- Park, square, beach: stealing unattended bags/valuables from tourists who are relaxed or in the water.
- Metro: snatching and getting out just before the doors close.
- Bus/train: stealing of bags left in the luggage compartments.
- ATM: snatching after cash is dispensed from the machine.
Places to beware:
- Anywhere (hotspots – e.g. Barcelona: Gothic Quarter; Madrid: Plaza Mayor)
- Check out other hotspots of violent crime
What to do:
- Valuables: avoid laying out on tables or carrying in your hands while walking.
- Bags: consider using lockable bags that can be locked to another object and cross body anti-theft bags (difficult to snatch).
- Travel insurance: get a good one that covers theft – check out the various travel insurance comparison platforms to find the best deal that works for you.