Be Smart And Ensure Your Safety When Visiting A New Country!

Visiting a new country is a process that has many risks attached to it. The fact that you are a foreigner could lead people to thinking that you are very rich, and this increases the chances of getting robbed in some countries. In addition to that, you may also get involved in accidents or fall ill when you are in a new country, conditions that often increase one’s anxiety significantly. Though it may not be possible to eliminate all the risks associated with travel, there are a few things that you can do to significantly reduce it. Some of these include:

Get health insurance that is applicable in the country you are going to visit

The first thing you should try to do is make sure that you have insurance so that in case you fall ill or need medical attention for any reason, you can easily get it. There are many companies that offer quality travel health insurance, and you can use them for this purpose. The only thing that you need to keep in mind is that you have to make sure that the product you use is applicable in the country that you are going to visit. This can be done by simply asking the insurance company if they serve the country you are going to visit.

Get emergency fund sources

In order to avoid getting short of cash when you are in a new country, you should try to organize for emergency funding in case you will need it. For instance, you could decide to travel with two credit cards, and then keep one in a safety deposit box (for instance, in your hotel). This way, in case you end up losing your main card, you will not need to suffer from any problem related to cash flow. Additionally, you can try to get travel insurance that will cover loss of cash. This way, you can simply make a claim to ensure that in case you are robbed, for instance, you have enough money to last you until the end of your trip. You can also keep some loose cash in your hotel room safe for this purpose as well.

Travel in groups

If you are in a new city and feel the need to explore, it is often advisable to try to travel in groups. This way, the chances of getting into any kind of problem is greatly reduced due to the numbers. Additionally, it is always a good idea to try to inform people of where you are going before you leave. For instance, if you have traveled with your family and need to go do some shopping, it is a good idea to tell your family members where you are going. This way, in case of anything problem (such as if you end up getting lost), they will have some kind of trail that they can use to trace your movements.

These are seemingly simple things, but they can make all the difference as far as securing your safety is concerned!

Chris is a travel enthusiast and an avid travel blogger. Visit the Lanzarote1 website to read his informative blogs.

The Costa Brava and Salvador Dali

The Costa Brava and Salvador Dali are in obvious sense inseparable. Its sunlight, winds and the peculiar character of its broad plains and rocky coast, are inescapably part of the fibre of its paintings.

Will Goodridge from I Spy Camping guides us through the region and the artist who made his home here.

Dali was born in Figueres, the city that lies in the north eastern corner of Catalonia, itself in the north east of Spain. Dali grew up imbued with the landscape of a great plain of Emporda with its atmospheric cliffs. His wife Gala fell in love with the medieval castle of Pubol, which she made her home in the 1970’s.

Today the very notion of the Costa Brava may seem inextricably bound up with beach holidays and water sports, since the tourist explosion that began in the 1960s opened it up to the outside world after the grim post war rigours of Francoism. Dali would have found nothing wrong with the idea of enjoying beaches and the sea. He loved both. The former fishing village of Cadaques, now a prosperous resort, was just as popular as a holiday getaway when he was a boy in the early years of the last century.

But for Dali, Cadaques, its tiny neighbouring village of Portlligat and its hinterland were to become the defining symbols of his life. Their brooding scenery became the backdrop on which he was able to project his own inner, mental landscape and within it equivalents of its attention, of which he liked to be the centre.

Costa Brava, it must be remembered, means the ‘wild coast’. The shores round Cap de Creus just up the coast from Cadaques, have little in common with those farther south where the jet ski and the beach bar hold sway in July and August.

When in winter, the local wind, the tramuntana, howls down relentlessly off the snow-clad summits of the Pyrenees the placid Mediterranean can be whipped up into a raging ocean. At such times it is exhilarating to stand as Dali did on the summit of the Cap de Creus or on the rocks of one of the coves beneath it and share in the spirit with him he swells crashing against them, and the flocks of sea-birds – gannets, gulls and pretels, soaring and diving in the sheer exhilaration on the buffets of the gale.

Cadaques and Portlligat have always been a pilgrimage of a resolute trickle of enthusiast determined to seek out this corner of Catalonia and share in the spirit of one its most determinedly eccentric sons. Today that trickle has become a stream, and yet Cadaques remains, mercifully, resolutely off the tourist route. That is not to say that it is remote. A few hours by car will box the four main points of the Dali compass. Cadaques, Portlligat, Pubol and Figueres quite satisfactorily.

Yet, some effort has undeniably to be made to reach Cadaques, whether you approach by car from France or from the south from the airports of Barcelona or Gerona. The effort is worth it. And the road that spirals breathtakingly up from the plain of Emporda towards the barren summits of the Alberes mountains, is not these days quite the white-knuckle ride it used to be only a few years ago.

A passing place here, a chicane ironed out there and the experience with the imcomparable panorama it affords of plain, sea and distant mountains, can be enjoyed without the undeniable sensation of apprehension that used to accompany it.

Dali was born in Figueres in 1904 and died in 1989 in his birthplace. The artist was a prolific artist, producing more than 1,500 paintings in his lifetime. He was expelled from the San Fernando school of fine arts in 1926, after claiming that nobody at the school was competent enough to examine him.

If you are interested in exploring the Costa Brava, I recommend staying at the year-round resort of Vilanova Park, just 30 minutes from many of the towns and resorts mentioned and the beautiful city of Barcelona.

Top tips for raising an English-Spanish bilingual child

Long gone are the days when bilingualism was viewed as a hindrance to a child’s academic and intellectual development. Modern research has revealed a whole swathe of benefits that result from the ability to speak two languages. But while parents of different nationalities almost unconsciously give their children the gift of bilingualism, parents who share a single language must work a little harder.

young boy in spain

Benefits of bilingualism

The ability to speak two languages is inherently a good thing – more so now than ever. In an increasingly globalised world, those that are able to communicate on an international level are more easily able to find jobs, form new relationships and relocate.

According to scientists from the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, bilingualism also stimulates and ‘strengthens’ the brain. Their study showed that bilinguals were far superior at processing sounds, compared with English-only-speaking participants. Other studies have suggested that bilingualism might help ward off dementia, as well as improving the area of the brain used for planning tasks and solving problems.

How children learn

For children to become bilingual, they must be exposed to both languages on a regular basis. Subsequent learning has been shown to take place in one of two ways. The first is simultaneous acquisition, which occurs when a child is either raised bilingually from birth or introduced to a second language before the age of three. In simultaneous acquisition, children pass through the same stages of development as mono-lingual children, though they may start talking a little later.

Sequential acquisition, as its name suggests, occurs when a child learns a second language after the first is already established. This normally happens after the age of three, and results in slower acquisition than a language learnt simultaneously. Children who learn sequentially may go through a quiet period, where they become almost silent as they build an understanding of the new second language.

How to teach

Whether they opt for simultaneous acquisition or sequential acquisition, parents must decide how the second language will be introduced. The most effective way of doing this is by making a new addition to the family in the form of a live-in native-Spanish-speaking nanny or au pair. Constant exposure to Spanish will soon result in the child adopting the language.

Tutors can also be used to teach children Spanish, though a significant number of lessons will be needed for them to reach fluency. Alternatively, children can be enrolled in language schools, such as Parents who wish to help their children can take lessons themselves, thereby providing the child with an opportunity to speak Spanish at any time.

Some parents choose to immerse children in a second language by spending time abroad. For example, children of a family that has relocated to Barcelona will quickly learn Spanish through exposure to other children.

The Top Five Apps For Not Dying in a Foreign Country

So, you want to travel the world, but you watch the news and you’re worried about some of the things that can happen. The world is a dangerous place, and it’s worse if you’re not familiar with local laws, services, and customs. So how can you keep yourself and your family safe travelling overseas? Obviously, you can never totally eliminate the risk, but your smartphone can definitely help! With these five useful apps, you can…

5. Speak to the Natives in Their Own Language

Google Translate – Android/IOS – Free

So, you didn’t listen to your mother, and you ate the street food. Ten fifty-cent tacos later, and you’re in real trouble, and you need to find a bathroom now. You’ve found someone who might be able to direct you, but you spent high-school Spanish trying to flirt with the hot guy/girl across the row, and you definitely don’t have time to go flipping through your little phrase book.

With the official Google Translate App, one tap translates spoken English into any one of dozens of supported languages, and reads the results in natural language. It also translates anything they say back into English for you. The translations aren’t perfect, but they’re more than good enough to save you from Montezuma’s revenge. Even better, the app also translates signs and labels automatically using your phone’s camera. At that price point, this app is a must-have for would-be world travelers.

4. Keep an Eye on the Weather

AccuWeather – Android – Free

Okay, so the weather isn’t all that shiny. Still, there’s a fine line between your camping party and the Donner party, and that line is zero degrees Fahrenheit. AccuWeather provides up-to-the-minute information about the weather, no matter where you are in the world. If you’re going anywhere even a little bit outside of civilization, knowing what mother nature has in store is invaluable, especially if you don’t know the local climes well enough to judge her moods.

3. Get Help When You’re Sick

mPassport – IOS – Free

Let’s say you’re in trouble – you licked a public telephone pole or tried to ski backwards or ate something optimistically called a ‘Meat Surprise!’ However it happened, you’re sick or injured, you need help, and you’re stuck in a foreign country. In the US, you’d go to a doctor, find a pharmacy or, call 911. All of these tasks are made virtually impossible if you don’t speak the language.

Fortunately, mPassport has your back. The app can tell you the emergency services number for most places in the world, direct you to pharmacies, schedule doctor’s visits, and even order prescriptions.

2. Be Aware of Your Surroundings

Smart Traveler – Android/IOS – Free

Sometimes, there are things you need to know. If a crazed killer is on the loose in Minsk turning people into tasteful handbags, or if a huge tidal wave is inbound, this is stuff you need to know right away. Fortunately, this helpful app from the state department keeps you up to date with the latest travel alerts and travel warnings, along with the latest maps, and the location of the nearest US Embassies if you’re in real trouble.

1. Quickly Call Emergency Services

Help Call – IOS – $2.99

Sometimes you don’t want an app – sometimes, you just need help, now, with no fuss. The beauty of this app is how minimalistic it is. You open it, and are presented with four large, friendly tiles asking what kind of help you need. You select the relevant one, and the app makes the call. That’s it. No looking up numbers for what country you’re in. No trying to type anything. Two taps, and help is on its way. When an emergency is underway and you’re far from home, it’s exactly what you need.

Scott Johnson is a blogger who writes tech and gadget articles for a variety of clients such as phone insurance brand.

Expat Guide to Personal Security in Spain

Most of the expats in Spain live on one of the Costas. Along the south coast, mugging and hand bag snatching is prevalent, so expats need to be aware of the need for good personal security.

The earliest experience we had of this was in Guardamar in daylight when our own personal security was put to the test. My wife, Joyce, and I were sat on a bench on the front admiring the view, when we were approached by a youth asking for the time. He was not satisfied with our reply and grabbed my wife`s watch wrist and pretended he was reading the time, but his other hand had wrapped around the straps of her handbag and he tried to pull it off her shoulder. Fortunately, it was a cheap plastic handbag and the strap snapped. When I confronted the assailant he ran off empty handed, and I fell whilst chasing him. Later on I was told that a gang of mates would have been hiding around the corner to sort out anybody following. From this moment on, my wife never carried a handbag. Only enough money needed for that day was taken out by us. Whether you live in Spain, or are a holiday maker, the advice is to carry a limited amount of cash, and only one credit card. Leave extra cash, extra credit cards, passports and personal documents in a safe location. Put anything you are carrying in a hard-to-reach place and try to avoid carrying all your valuables together in a purse or backpack.

Some find a money belt is useful to wear.

Another favourite trick was the “razor blade.” Somebody would be driving and a passenger with a blade would jump out, slash the bag handle and drive off. It is all done so fast you hardly realize what has happened.

If you drive around Spain, there can be gangs waiting at roadside cafes. They put a nail in one of your tyres to create a slow puncture and when you have driven a few miles and pull in to look at your tyre, they pull in as well and rob you whilst you are changing wheels.

The US Department of State issues some excellent advice for its citizens visiting Spain, though in reality much of it could apply to a traveller from anywhere and to any country being visited.

“ There have been reports of thieves posing as plainclothes police officers, beckoning to pedestrians from cars and sometimes confronting them on the street asking for documents, or to inspect their cash for counterfeit bills, which they ultimately “confiscate” as evidence.

The U.S. Embassy in Madrid has received reports of cars on limited access motorways being pulled over by supposed unmarked police cars. The Spanish police do not operate in this fashion. American citizens are encouraged to ask for a uniformed law enforcement officer if approached.

Travelers should remain alert to their personal security and exercise caution. We suggest that travelers carry limited cash, only one credit card, and a copy of their passport; leaving extra cash, extra credit cards, passports and personal documents in a safe location”

Another trick is being followed from the airport, and whilst being overtaken by the following car, they point to a flat tyre or some other problem and signal that you should pull in to rectify it. When you get out, there is no flat tyre or problem, only the robber with a knife asking for your valuables. These are usually known as “Good Samaritan” scams.

Common sense alleviates a lot of these problems e.g. when carrying your shopping back to your car from the supermarket, look around before you open the boot. It is when you open the boot and start to load your groceries that you are most vulnerable with your handbag, car keys and so on. And, when leaving your car remember if you leave items on view like luggage, cameras, laptops, or briefcases they are an easy and tempting target for thieves.

Right hand drive cars are often targeted, because only the British normally drive them, and as everybody knows we are “super rich”, so beware. The Moroccans and Algerians get blamed for most of the petty crime on the Costas, but I am sure that the Spanish are not totally blameless.

Taxi Drivers

Some of the taxi drivers are in collusion with robbers, especially coming from the airport. The driver drops off his customer and then phones the robbers advising them of how many are in the party, the address, types of luggage etc. Within hours the property has been broken into and usually passports, cameras, phones, cash and cards are taken.

Security On Villas

Alarms on villas help as they are fairly new to Spain. If your villa is alarmed and those around you are not then they will be targeted first. In Spain, by law, you should not have an outside bell on the alarm, it should be connected to an alarm company who will phone the local police to come out and check (though not always as quickly as we might like).
Good grills, which are a feature anyway, should be fitted, along with solid doors. Park off road when possible (cars left unmoved on a road for more than a month are considered abandoned by the police and can be towed away).

There are many market days in Spain and pick pocketing is rife, so carry your money, as little as possible, in a safe place with a zip up pocket or money belt (bum belts).
Do not carry valuables over your shoulder.

The Police

If you do get involved in an incident and the police are called in, the police do not take a statement at the scene, but tell you to go to a designated police station. That is where the particulars are taken, in Spanish only, so you will need an interpreter with you. I was witness to a road rage in Spain, and confronted the assailant, who was punching the elderly driver of the other car. The police were called in and they told me to go to a police station about 8 miles from the incident with an interpreter and the elderly driver, and give my side of the event. They told the assailant to get on his way. The elderly driver thanked me for my assistance but said it was a waste of time trying to pursue it.

Remember that just because the weather is hot, the people are friendly, you are in a relaxed frame of mind it does not mean you won’t be a victim of crime. Remain vigilant just as would back in the UK, take sensible precautions, and you will drastically cut down the risks of losing your possessions.


Our visitors may enjoy looking at some other sites listed here. If you are a webmaster and feel that your site would be of interest to others please feel free to send in your request via the Contact Form with your details.

Expat Women Blog Directory

British Corner Shop – British food shopping online delivered worldwide.

Absolute Spain Forum – An online forum to share your experiences of Spain.

Expats Reunite – The international site for expats everywhere. Reuniting friends and families all over the world

Expat Direct – British and English food shopping and hampers from our online grocery store with delivery to expats worldwide

Expats abroad is a site for all expats worldwide as well as anyone considering travelling or living abroad. A message centre for expats, whether looking for new friends or trying to locate old ones.

Cheap Flight – Cheap Flight tickets up for grabs! Book now and avail discounts on airline tickets to top vacation and business destinations worldwide. is a free source of information for British expatriates

Great Website Guide

Allo’Expat Worldwide – Portal for the expatriates community around the world. Includes dedicated country websites and discussion forums.

Spain car rental – Book a car from best spain car rental and enjoy various pick up points

Stuff Back Home – Stuff Back Home is an Online British Supermarket for British Expats and anyone who loves British Food. Shop Online 24/7 for all your British Groceries and British Gifts and we will send them to you anywhere worldwide!

A Spanish course with a goal of you being able to speak Spanish conversationally.

Debt Solutions for anyone suffering from debt problems

British Expats in Spain – Community forum for British expatriates living in Europe.

Malaga Airport Information – The Complete Traveller’s Guide

Moving to Spain with

Sixt Car Rentals in Spain – Sixt has over 70 car rental locations all over Spain, book your rent a car with Sixt.

British Food delivered to your doors.

British Supermarket Abroad – Buy British Food and Products online and have them delivered to your door worldwide. 1000′s of your favourite British Groceries including Tea, Coffee, Cereal and Chocolate. Log on today for prompt delivery and 1st class customer service.

Multitude of Languages That May be Encountered While Traveling in Spain

Once and a while it is nice to get away from where you call home and bask in the beauty of another country. Whether for it be for holiday, business or permanent relocation, Spain is a superb place to visit.

Culture and Traveling in Spain

In Spain travel is easy, accommodation is abundant, the weather is flawless, the residents are relaxed, the beaches are beautiful and the food and drinks are easy to come by and full of regional variety. Culturally, Spain is littered with magnificent old buildings, from Roman aqueducts and Islamic fortresses to Gothic cathedrals as well as some of the World’s greatest art- Dalí, Picasso, Goya and El Greco. With Spain’s favourable location, stunning culture and many tourist hubs including cities such as: Barcelona, Madrid, Seville and Valencia it is no wonder that more than 50 million foreigners visit Spain each year.

However, before arriving to Spain, it is important to realise that more than one dialect of the official language, Spanish, or as Spaniards call, Castilian, is spoken in this country.

Language in Spain

The Spanish language of Spain has a rich and enduring history that can be traced back about 2000 years before the birth of Christ when Celtiberians spoke an early Celtic language. Over centuries the language has evolved and has created many variations of Spanish, which are spoken throughout the country today. In fact, about one fourth of the country’s residents use a tongue other than Spanish as their first language. Here is a brief look at these languages:

Basque (Euskara): Basque is the language spoken by the Basque people, which is an ethnic group of both Spain and France. Basque is easily the most unusual language spoken in Spain since it doesn’t fit into the Indo-European family of languages that includes Spanish and French as well as other Romance languages. About 600,000 people in Spain speak Basque and what makes it linguistically interesting is that it has never been shown to be related to another language.

Catalan (Català): Catalan is a strong cross of Spanish and French although many would say that it is more similar to Italian than it is to Spanish. Besides being spoken in Spain, Catalan is also spoken in parts of Andorra (where is it the national language), France and Sardinia, Italy. Around 4 million people speak Catalan as their first language while just as many speak it as their second language as well.

Galician (Galego): Galician is a language of the Western Ibero-Romance branch and is spoken by nearly 3 million people, mainly in Galicia, a community located in north-western Spain. Galician developed along with Portuguese until the 14th century, which gives reason to its strong similarities to the language, especially in vocabulary and syntax.

Miscellaneous Languages in Spain

Fala (Fala): Only spoken by about 10,500 people of whom 5,500 live in a valley of the north-western part of Extremadura near the border of Portugal.

Astur-Leonese (Asturleyonés): This language is a group of mutually intelligible Romance dialects of the West Iberian branch and is spoken in the autonomous communities of Asturias, north-western Castile and Leon and western Cantabria.

Extremaduran (Estremenyo): A romance language spoken by several hundred thousand people in north-western Spain.

Aragonese (Aragonés): Spoken around the Aragon River and the province of Huesca in Aragon.

Aranese, dialect of Occitan (Aranés, variant d’o gascon): Aranese is a variant of the Gascon dialect of Occitan spoken in Val d’Aran in the north-east of Spain. About 90% of the region can understand Aranese and about 65% can speak it.

Although you may not be traveling expansively to regions where different dialects of Spanish are spoken it is good to be aware of the many diverse languages used in the somewhat small country of Spain.

If you are looking to visit a quaint town, full of culture in Spain be sure to visit for more information.

Real Estate Abroad – Get Your Spanish Dream Home!

Many “Northerners”, mostly from UK but also from other countries such as Germany, Sweden or Norway have long learned about the advantages of owning real estate in a sunny, southern European country. Amongst the top favorites for owning real estate abroad is Spain. There are many things which make it very attractive to own a home in sunny Spain.

The Spanish real estate market is not untouched be the overall poor European economy. While this is a negative if you plan to re-sell right away, it can be a big opportunity if you are looking for a cheap home or villa. All throughout Spain, from the rural areas to the busy tourist locations on the Costa Blanca, you can find real estate agents that offer incredible homes, villas and apartments at very low prices. Many of the properties come fully furnished and have all the amenities one could wish for, such as a swimming pool, air condition or a sun-roof. The properties in Spain are offered at a fraction of the cost what an equal home would cost back in the UK.

Many people from the UK purchase affordable apartments that will become their holiday home whenever they want to go on vacation. They spend most of the year back in the UK and then visit Spain for a week or two over the holidays.

The advantages are obvious: Instead of paying for costly stays and hotels, a nice apartment will wait for you in sunny Spain! Not only will you have nice real estate for holidays in a beautiful southern country: Who knows, at some time you might want to retire and Spain might be just the right place for it!

Another option is if you buy a home or apartment in Spain cheap and then rent it out to other holidaymakers. This can be quite lucrative if you get a good deal on a place such as on the beautiful Costas in Spain. While you will own a nice place in a great country, you will in addition have a good income each month from your rental fees. The agencies will normally take care of everything, like finding tenants and collecting the rent. The real estate agencies usually offer maintenance services as well, this means they will look after your property when you’re back home and you don’t have to worry about anything.

Many real estate agents that offer holiday homes and other property in Spain are originally from the UK, so language will rarely be an issue. Chances are you will find a real estate agent that can advise you with all questions you might have. If you indeed plan to relocate and retire in Spain (a good idea, by the way!) the agents often can give you helpful advice in regards to all the formalities and paperwork required. Owning a property in Spain will be a fantastic option if you are tired of the stress and the poor, rainy weather back home!

Danielle is a real estate expert and has extensive knowledge in how people can find homes using estate agents Glasgow. She enjoys helping people find their dream home!

Top Things to Arrange Before Emigrating

So you’ve decided to take the big step of moving abroad, you’ve managed to find a new job in your chosen country if necessary and you’ve informed your nearest and dearest of your plans. But what do you need to do next?

Preparing to emigrate can seem like a daunting prospect, but you needn’t let practical considerations spoil the excitement associated with a great new adventure like moving overseas. Just put together a checklist of the tasks you need to complete before you go and make sure you tick them all off before getting on the plane.

Here are some of the most important things to get sorted:

Your property

It might be stating the obvious, but deciding what to do with your current property and finding somewhere to live in your new country needs some careful consideration. You might want to sell your house if the move is going to be permanent, but if you plan to return in a few years then renting it out could be the better option.

Of course, you’ll also need to find somewhere to live in the new country, so make sure you devote plenty of time to this too. Speak to local real estate agents to find out what’s available, and thoroughly research your chosen area on the internet so you know what to expect.

When it comes to buying a place overseas, seeking the advice of a currency exchange specialist for sending payments to another country is often a wise move.

Your money

Think about how you’re going to manage your finances when you’re living in a new country. Opening an international bank account is advisable, as you’ll probably need to conduct transactions in different currencies.

You also need to consider your existing savings and investments. Would you benefit most from changing a sizeable chunk of your money into the new currency, or keeping it in sterling?

Having to sort out unpaid bills and cancel direct debits once you’ve moved will be a major headache, so make sure you bring your council tax, utility charges and any other payments up to date before you go. Also, don’t forget to cancel any redundant direct debits and standing orders with your bank.

Your documents

It’s a good idea to get all your important personal documents together well in advance of your moving date, as you never know when certain information will be needed. Compile paperwork such as employment references, driving licences and other key documents, and ask your doctor and dentist for copies of your files.


If you’re taking your children with you, then you need to make sure their education does not suffer as a result of the move. Do your research on local schools and make sure you register your children in plenty of time.

Remember that education systems vary significantly from country to country and there may be some aspects you’re not familiar with, so it’s worth taking the time to find out as much as you can.


Your pets may need health documentation if they’re making the move with you, so do your research and find out what the entry requirements are. Some countries may insist that your animals are quarantined for a period and others will require them to have inoculations.

Barcelona: Safety Tips

Spain is one country that contains a variety of cultures. Indeed, few cultures stand out more in this country than that which is found in Catalonia. And Barcelona, being its capital city, is a perfect representation of the Catalan identity. People flock from all over the world to take in the myriad sites and activities this bustling seaside metropolis has on offer, such as the bombastic street performances on the Las Ramblas promenade and the Gaudi-designed buildings. The food and wine are nothing to sneeze at either.

But just like in any tourist hot spot, petty crime can be an issue. While the majority of visitors to Barcelona leave with nothing but fantastic memories, there are others who find themselves the victims of pickpockets or bag snatchers. The good news is there are measures to be taken that can minimize the overall risk of petty theft and ensure a lovely stay in this Mediterranean treasure.

Move that wallet

Seasoned travelers throughout the world can say with some measure of expertise that one of the best ways to protect a wallet is to never keep it in the back pocket. Those visitors to Barcelona who want to hang on to their billfold would do well to keep it in the front. Also, those wearing backpacks will want to wear them against the chest rather than in the standard way.

Don’t expose valuables

There is a rich café culture in Barcelona, and there are few better ways to pass the time in this great city than at an outdoor table with an espresso or beer. However, make sure not to leave things like cameras and phones on the tabletop; it’s all too common to be reading a magazine only to look up and find that the iPhone or digital camera is now gone forever. To this end, keep all bags on the lap or wrapped around the legs.

Be hyperaware in crowded areas

Las Ramblas and the Metro in particular. Subways and the promenade are hubs for pickpockets, and they often work in groups. One moment a tourist is happily enjoying a lively street show on Las Ramblas and the next thing they know their valuables are gone. This petty theft can also be a problem when using airport transit. There’s no need to be overly fearful; just keep an extra eye out.

Be wary of contact with strangers

In any crowded city, it’s not uncommon to brush up against the occasional pedestrian, and it’s no different in Barcelona. However, tourists should be aware of strangers who approach or touch them. Oftentimes a criminal will distract a tourist while his or her partner steals the tourist’s wallet or handbag. Those travelers who have secured their valuables and who cast an assiduous eye toward the people around them are virtually guaranteed not to experience any problems.


In general, Barcelona is a very safe city that earns raves from long-term residents and tourists alike. It is merely the duty of the traveler to take commonsense steps in order to ensure their belongings remain their belongs for the duration of their trip

Franck Anais is a real estate agent in Barcelona since 2002. ShBarcelona is an apartment rental agency based in L’Eixample, in the heart of Barcelona. The agency offers Barcelona accommodations with flexible rental contracts.

Franck Anais operates ShBarcelona apartments, a real estate agency located in the heart of Barcelona, for more than 10 years. He and his team help tourists, students and businessmen find the perfect apartment for their stay in Barcelona.