How it works:
- Street, mall, shop, park, transportation hub: distracting and snatching from you, then escaping via a getaway car or down a street corner.
- Airport, bus terminal: distraction techniques include asking for help, creating a fake fight, pushing past you.
- Beach, hiking trail: robbing at gunpoint.
- Bus: theft and robbery.
- ATM, bank: robbing after you withdraw your cash.
Places to beware:
- Anywhere (hotspots – e.g. Quito: El Panecillo; Cuenca: Parque Calderon; Guayaquil: downtown)
- 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.