How it works:
- Pavement: bikes riding past, with a pillion rider doing the snatch.
- Market, plaza, park, bus station, train station: distracting and snatching from you, then escaping via a getaway car or down a street corner.
- Bar, restaurant: stealing unattended bags/valuables on the chair or table.
- Hotel, airport: where distracted/tired tourists carry all their valuables out.
- Beach: unattended belongings when you head out to the water.
- Bank, ATM: theft after you withdraw cash.
- Bus: stealing unattended bags/luggage in luggage compartments (Lima, Ica, Nazca, Cusco routes).
- Car/taxi: smashing your window and snatching your valuables at traffic lights or in crowded traffic (to and from Jorge Chavez International Airport).
Places to beware:
- Anywhere (hotspots – e.g. Lima: Miraflores, Barranco; Cusco; Arequipa)
- 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 (e.g. World Nomads, trusted by Lonely Planet and National Geographic – review).