European Travels – Avoid Scams

Paris Eiffel TowerA large number of students tend to travel to other European cities during the holidays. However, students need to be alert of the petty thefts and scams that locals operate around these European cities. In Paris and Barcelona, there are many reports of people getting their purse stolen when they were not looking. More concerning is that gangs may operate in places like Prague and Amsterdam. One recent scam involves a group of guys pretending to be dressed as security guards in the subway (underground). They stop you and surround you to create intimidation. They then ask to see your passports, claiming it is for security reasons. If you hand over your passports, they bribe you by demanding money from you to get your passport back. The lesson here is never ever give your passport to a stranger, only at the airport to pass the gates. If you are a group of girls, you are more vulnerable so try to avoid the subway and stay above ground by taking the buses, taxis, trams. Be alert at all times because international students are a huge target for these gangs that operate in these areas. However, I have visited each of the mentioned cities a few times with no problems, but there is probably a chance it could happen to you and ruin your trip. 

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