Most of the people prefer the coziness and security of home and hardly dare to take an adventure. This prevents them from travelling. Or if they travel they prefer the central parts of a big city where they sit on a bench and contemplate the locals. They cannot run the risk of taking a side street, then a second one, then another one and finally get lost. Well, it doesn’t apply to me. What I want to say is that I prefer to feel the rhythm of a city when I turn to the left, after that – to right, at a time not knowing where I am ….of course very, very reasonably every time. In my opinion, this is the real charm of a travel. This is the real charm of the city.
Of course, there are plenty of traps you might get into while you enjoy the historic heritage of a city, its beauty and culture. In order to avoid any nasty situations, I would like to share my “Manual for the tourist” with you. So let’s get started.
At the airport
When you arrive at the airport of a big city you might get acquainted with the place where you are going to stay, by visiting one of the numerous info-points and tourist centres there. You could find very useful information, get city maps and if you have specific questions and queries, trained and specialized staff would be able to assist you with pieces of advice and information.
Before leaving your hotel, don’t take all your precious belongings with you. But don’t leave them in the room either. An option is to deposit them at the reception desk. If you happen to take them with you during walk around the city, please, keep an eye on them all the time.
Principally, you shouldn’t take much cash with you as well as precious watches or jewelry with you. They always seduce pickpockets. A very smart way to avoid being robbed is to not demonstrate you have the latest model of a mobile device, an expensive digital camera or a big wallet in the street. When you withdraw money from an ATM machine, first look around and see whether there are suspicious guys around you who are watching you. And never take in money or take it out of your wallet in public. On the opposite, do it discreetly. Last thing here. Discourage pickpockets by carrying your precious belongings, especially your wallet, in your bag (not in the back pocket, for instance) in front you. You will look like a pregnant woman with your handbag in front, but there is nothing wrong “to get pregnant” for a while, for the sake of your safety.
When you take a walk in a big city, always pretend to be confident where you are going to. Don’t show you are a lost tourist because you might get into a trouble. If you really don’t know the way to a certain place, ask for directions and help a policeman, a trustful local or shopkeeper. People are always eager to assist you, especially, when you visit southern European countries.
At the restaurant or in bars
When you visit a restaurant or a bar, make sure that you don’t leave your handbag, camera or precious belongings on the free seat/chair near you, especially when you are in outdoors locals. They attract pickpockets’ attention easily. In this case, you have at least two options. The first one is to put them under the table, near your feet. The second one is to deposit and leave them at the cloakroom.
People around you
When you walk through the most visited touristic sites in a city, it is inevitable not to bump into street sellers who offer you various gadgets, souvenirs, etc. Very often they are too pushy. So, don’t hesitate to avoid them and even to go far away from them, if necessary. It is not a rule of thumb but quite often their goods and items are at very low prices but counterfeited.
When using public transport, if you are “smashed” and “hit” from all sides, it will be a clear sign for you that somebody wants to get you distracted and then …. Knock knock on wood it never happens.
If you wander in the centre of a big city, it’s good for you to choose central streets and side streets which are illuminated in the evening and at night and which are preferred places by the locals. If you need to go to a distant place, you ought to use either public transport, taxi or a car. And last thing here. If you go somewhere in your car, never leave your belongings, items or clothes in it because they attract attention.