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Theft precautions.  I was the victim of a pickpocket viewing the Eiffel Tower from Place Trocadero in Paris.  This was a first for me, so here is the voice of experience with a number of suggestions:


·        Strip down your wallet and purse before you leave home.  When in doubt, leave it home.

·        Always leave your passport, airplane ticket, jewelry and extra cash in the hotel safe.  If there isnīt one in your room, use the one at the desk.

·        Use a wallet that hides under your clothing for everything except walking around money and pocket change.

·        Just carry one credit card around with you.  Have another card on the trip for back up, but never carry them together.  Carry your cash card separately from your credit card.

·        Keep a list of the customer service numbers for your credit card issuers, so you will be able to call them immediately if your cards are stolen.

·         We have heard that men might be able to foil pickpockets by carrying an old wallet as bait in the rear pocket, and putting the real wallet in an inconspicuous place, like the shirt pocket or the front pocket.

·        Watch your luggage carefully as you check in and out of hotels.


Passports.  Losing your passport will cause you delay at the very least.  Experienced travelers do the following to minimize the risk of loss and the delay:

  • Take a few photocopies of the key pages of your passport, including any visas that are necessary for the trip.  Keep them separate from your passport.  Carry one with you around town, instead of the passport itself.  If your hotel asks for your passport, offer them a copy instead.  Having a copy also will expedite replacement.
  • Take an extra set of passport photos and keep them separate from your passport.  The US consulate may be ready to expedite replacing your passport, but they cannot do it without photos.  You may lose valuable time waiting for a photographer to open during regular business hours, so it is best to take your own photos along.  I was on a trip once when our party lost the better part of a day hunting for a photographer.