The Clever Travel Companion Updates

40 Top Tourist Scams December 29 2018, 0 Comments

We are all aware that scams and thieves, no matter where you may be in the world, target tourists. They're continually evolving their methods for beating new prevention gear and for ripping off unsuspecting travelers, sometimes with dire consequences.

 

 

Below is an infographic from justtheflight .co.uk that outlines the top, most used and most effective scams to watch out for to ensure you don't become a victim.

Of course, the most effective method of keeping your valuables safe from harm is to put The Clever Travel Companion's gear to use.

 

40 Top Tourist Scams

 


The Eiffel Tower... Pickpocket heaven? July 13 2017, 0 Comments

Eiffel Tower Police 

The Eiffel Tower in Paris is one of the sites that is probably on every single person's bucket list, at least every single avid traveler's. It's an engineering marvel and an iconic tower, representing France and known by all around the world. Something people perhaps don't quite know however is the plague of pickpockets that have used The Eiffel Tower as their area of operations for years now. They're very aware of the amount of valuable tourists that flock to the modern marvel at all times of the year, they're aware of their valuables and they're aware of how to dispossess them of such valuables, in fact they have made a very wealthy living out of it, with some reports suggesting they earn around $4000 USD per DAY off of stolen goods.

Security forces have had exceptional difficulty in trying to control the situation and even CLOSED the tourist attraction to the public back in 2015 as the situation spiraled out of control and staff staged a walkout due to abuse from the pickpocket gangs. These organized gangs use sophisticated techniques to ensure their bounty continues, like dressing up as tourists themselves and buying tickets to enter the attraction, rather than waiting on the outside. They also employ tactics like taking selfies or asking tourists to take part in fake petitions and ever targeting the public transport routes on the way to the attraction. It's not just pickpocketing that is the problem too, violent crime has become a worrying symptom of these gangs having been able to operate for so long. After all, their thievery is worth hundreds of thousands of Euros per year, which is then sent out of the country, often to the gangs home countries of Romania or Bulgaria.

75% of visitors to the Eiffel Tower are foreign tourists, that's a staggering 7 million people per year, which makes it the most visited, paid monument in the world and its growing year on year. This recent TripAdvisor review comes from someone who suggests the problem of pickpockets is not abating, despite additional security measures and several big arrests. 

Naturally we would never suggest that you don't visit one of the worlds most famous monuments due to some silly thieves, you absolutely must include it in your bucket list of things to do. But be wary of course, try to outsmart the pickpockets rather than the other way around. Be on your guard, if you're approached by someone you don't know, keep your hands on your valuables - or even better, pick up some Clever Travel Companion gear. Outsmarting the rabble of pickpockets was precisely what it was designed for!

 

 

 


The RFID Myth Exposed February 22 2017, 0 Comments

So a few weeks back, The Clever Travel Companion posted a blog article on the reason it doesn't offer RFID products or technology. You can read more on our blog, but to summarize, the reasons we don't advocate RFID tech is that simply put, it's an expensive marketing gimmick. A gimmick that requires hysteria in order to gain momentum but by doing so, takes focus away from the real problems.

Sure RFID has it's uses; if you're one of the few with a wireless capable credit card, then you'd better hope you don't run into an incredibly sophisticated hacker who just happens to be in public with his equipment preying on unsuspecting members of the general populous during his time away from say, preventing government cyber attacks or hacking Yahoo or Bitcoin. It's enough of a chance to spend $120 on a new wallet right? Besides, there's skepticism out there that all wallets work and if you are to be "electronically pickpocketed", your bank will protect you and return the funds in most cases. If you are physically pickpocketed, its a very different proposal.

 

Vicky's Story: Vicky from the UK (pictured above) placed her order of Ladies underwear and 2 pocket tank tops with Clever Travel Companion before her round the world trip in 2016. She'd prepared as much as possible, buying into the RFID hype too. Recently Vicky got in touch with us to let us know how things went: "I knew the chances of an RFID 'hack' would be low but having a few wireless payment cards, I didn't mind spending out for the added protection just to be double sure nothing could happen, so I bought an RFID purse and kept it in my bag as it was pretty bulky. My main cards, my cash, ID and passport stayed in either a pair of my underwear or one of the tanks I had bought. One day, whilst riding a tram in Barcelona I noticed a gentle tug on my bag but when I turned around there was nobody there so I thought nothing of it but when I checked my bag, the whole RFID purse had been stolen. I was absolutely gutted and felt very stupid until I realized that all the important valuables were still very much in my possession and safe and sound - that I can put down to Clever Travel Companion. If it wasn't for the tank I was wearing that day, my whole trip would have come to a very disappointing end"

 

Vicky's story is just one of the many we hear from our customers. The reason we exist after all is because of this exact scenario - pickpocketing. It's happened to us and it can happen to anyone. 

The Clever Travel Companion will be creating a new page on site to host the many testimonials we receive and each one will also be used in a blog post and possibly in our Traveler's stories series of newsletters. If you have a travel story or a CTC testimonial that you'd like to tell us, we would love to hear from you! Just send Rory an email at rory@clevertravelcompanion.com and you'll be added to our testimonials page and could also make it into the newsletter.