Here's the bad news: pickpockets love crowds. It is the best place for them to work. Plenty of people milling around equals plenty of victims. And plenty pf people crowding together equals invisibility for the thieves. It is certainly much easier to slip their hands inside someone's bag and take whatever they can grab in a crowded stadium than in a less than crowded one.
So beware all of you lucky travelers going to the Olympics. The London police have issued plenty of warnings: do not expose yourself unnecessarily to pickpockets whilst in London. Be careful and keep an eye on your belongings. The pickpockets will target anyone who is not protected.
So to the god news. Protecting yourself can be done and fairly easily at that, Here are my top pointers.
1. Don't bring all your money and all your credit cards as well as your passport on your daily outings. leave the bulk of it in the hotel safe.
2. Don't keep your wallet in your back pocket. If you must use a pocket fro your money, use your front pocket of your jeans and whenever you fel uneasy put your hand in your pocket.
3. Ladies, don't keep your wallet in a handbag causally flung over your shoulder. If you are must use a handbag either wear across your body, under your arm so you can always cover the opening. and do zip your bag closed.
4. Spread out your money. Put some in one pocket, some in another. Make sure you have enough money to get back to your hotel, if you do get pickpocketed.
5. Cameras: dont keep them casually slung over your back. They are a nice little target for a pair of scissors that way. You won't even notice it, I promise. Keep your camera as you would a necklace and hold your hand on the camera itself, especially in crowds.
6. Don't drape your jacket, with your wallet in the pocket on the back of a chair. Someone will get to it.
7. Don't hang your purse on the back of a chair. That is an even easier target.
8. If someone acts funny, pushes you, bumps into you, grabs your arm or in any way touches you or stops you - walk away! They most likely have an accomplice. Whilst one person is diverting your attention, the other one is either stealing from you or from your partner.
9. Remember you will be dealing with pros. While you are visiting London and the Olympic Games 2012 for fun, they are there to work. Don't think 'it won't happen to me', because if you are not careful it will.
10. Wear safety gear. I of course recommend the Clever Travel Companion's gear, especially our t-shirts or tank tops. I believe these are better for occasions like sports events than our underwear since they are easy to access frequently and in crowds. (unless it gets really hot and you don't want to wear anything on top of your tee or tank, than the underwear are perfect!).
Finally. Enjoy the Olympic games you lucky, lucky you who get to go! As long as you take some simple precautions and keep an eye out for funny business you will most likely be perfectly safe!
Don't put you wallet in your back pocket. That's the first place the expert pickpockets check out.