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How to Avoid Looking Like a Tourist

TouristsMaybe it’s the tell-tale, brightly-colored fanny pack. Or the giant camera hanging around the neck. Or the hand alternately pointing to an unfolded map and then to arbitrary directions in the air. It’s a tourist, in all their glory, virtually screaming “I’m from out of town and am carrying things you can steal!” Whether traveling to the next state or to a different country, you don’t want to advertise that you are a tourist. That can lead to potential problems with crooks and scammers just waiting to take advantage of an obvious unfamiliarity with the land and customs. While some of the trick is to hold oneself with confidence and a sense of belonging, it also helps to dress and carry belongings in a more subtle way, keeping your status as a tourist a secret.


Clothing that protects and conceals your valuables should not look like it’s concealing anything, but should instead look like a regular piece of clothing.  For this, we recommend apparel with hidden pockets that can only fit the essentials: your credit cards, money, and cell phone.  Even better is underwear with concealing pockets where it’s much harder for a pick pocket to grab, even if they watch you stow away your valuables in that secretive, hidden pocket.


The reality is, the safest place to carry your valuables is under your clothes where pickpockets and thieves can’t spot them and can’t easily take them. Take added precautions by using wallets that offer RFID blocking so that scammers can’t scan your personal information from your passport, driver’s license or credit cards, even as they simply walk past you.


When you are heading out for a day of exploring, there can be a lot of items you want to bring along, like a cell phone, camera, wallet, map, maybe even your iPad® and a light jacket. But you don’t want to walk around carrying what looks like a small suitcase to handle of those items. That would be a sure signal to a criminal that you have valuables they want. Instead, carry what you need for the day close to your body in what looks like a typical purse or messenger bag. A cross-the-body, well-organized bag with hidden pockets that lays close to the body makes it much harder, if not impossible, for a would-be thief to grab your bag and take off.

Focus on your travel adventures without worrying that thieves have you pegged from a mile away. Carry what you need looking like a savvy traveler but not an easy mark.

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