6 Common Travel Scams in Europe

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travel scams Europe

My travels in Europe hold a special place in my heart. I haven’t been back since 2011, and I’m seriously missing the beauty, culture, and of course the food! (We have an upcoming Euro trip, I can’t wait!) It’s undeniable though that Europe has large crime rings that target tourists, and I believe that if I was more aware and knew about these scams beforehand, we would’t have gotten robbed in Greece. If you’re more prepared and aware, you’ll have less chance of being a target! Here are 6 common travel scams in Europe, and how to avoid them.

1. Ring Scam

This is one of the most famous scams in Paris. A man will walk up to you, asking if you lost a gold ring. When you deny that it’s yours, he will try and sell it to you, proclaiming it’s supposed tremendous value. (Of course the ring is a dime a dozen, but you’d be surprised how many people get ripped off with this scam.)

2. Pickpocketing

Europe is famous for swift pickpocketers, and many tourists get their stuff taken while on the subway, in a crowded street, or even slashed out of their backpacks. Get slash proof backpacks if possible, always know what pockets your valuable are in, and never let your belongings out of your sight!

3. Distraction

There are an endless amount of ways people are using distraction techniques nowadays, and we have unfortunately dealt with it first hand. From waving papers in your face to spilling ketchup on your shirt, remember to be aware of your surroundings. Click to see how we got robbed in Athens, Greece!

4. Rose For You

Another situation we got tied up in! Typically men will approach women and hand them a rose, or in other cases offer to take your picture. (Mind you I denied the rose profusely, but it was being forced upon me!) Once you accept the rose or have your picture taken, the man will demand payment from you, pestering you endlessly.

5. The Use of Children

It’s saddening to see the amount of children working these crime rings in Europe, raised and trained to deceive unsuspecting tourists. We’ve seen kids begging on the subway, tailing us while pulling on our clothing and belongings, and many trying to force “gifts” upon us, and demanding payment afterward.

6.  Throwing Baby

This is by far the craziest! A typical scam in Paris, women will throw a fake baby at you, expecting you to catch it so they or someone else can rob you. This actually happened to someone my friend knew, but in their case a women placed A REAL BABY into his hands!

Have you ever been the target of a scam abroad?