How safe is Paris?
Nowadays, being in Paris is becoming trickier than before. The crime rate has been increasing day by day off late. A robbery occurs in every 5 minutes in Paris at the train station, inside the metro’s, at the airport and on the streets etc. About 9% of Parisians were victims of some sort of burglary.
Good to know
Some pickpockets work in groups. They can be in a group of girls or boys or individuals and of all races. If you get robbed, go to the nearest police station. Best is not to fight back/chase the person whoever stole your wallet, phone, laptop or jewelry etc. as they often work in groups, and you could get into trouble if you are alone. Or even individuals can be violent at times and may carry arms.
To make a complaint click on <- this link. In case if you are a tourist, police complaint must be lodged before your departure from France.
Stay alert while in metro/RER/train
Do not stand in front of the metro doors. Finding a seat away from the doors is a safer option.
Some thieves have developed a technique of snatching away your phone from your hand just before the door is closed, if you are standing close to the door.
Walking on the Street
This is one tactic of robbers try to steal things from you, where one or more members of a group will try diverting your attention by calling you, by showing you an address, by speaking to you, or even by flirting with you. While, their partners steal your stuffs.
Do you speak English
While in the touristic areas, you will see young girls coming towards you asking if you speak English, with a page in hand. They will ask you to sign a paper to support a cause, and then will harass you to give a donation in favour of that cause. As they work in group, very quickly you can be surrounded by a bunch of people once you disagree with one of them. Best it to avoid.
Often done by the blacks, they are found near the Sacred Heart Church of Montmartre area, or towards the Trocadero/Eiffel Tower. They will tie a thread on your wrist, through insistence or at times by force, and then will ask you to pay a hefty sum. Best is to avoid them without any eye contact and avoid all sorts of discussion.
The shell game scam
Always work in gang, mostly east Europeans or sometimes blacks, they work exactly as in India. You will be intrigued to find out under which glass hides the small ball or coin. Their gang members hide as interested clients and will often initiate the game.
The thieves of back bag
If you are carrying valuables in your back bag, like a computer, think to lock it with a small key. There are experts who will open the zip of your back bag and take out whatever is dear to you without you to understand a thing. Sometimes, a partner of that thief will divert your attention.
Bags in the train
While you are travelling between one city to another, and have kept your bag far from you, trying keeping an eye there. We have cases where bags have been stolen in the train. If you see there is some place closer to where you are sitting, it may be a safer option to keep your belongings there.
Intercity bus travels
There are cases when people's bags were stolen from the luggage area. If you are travelling between cities in a bus, try to put your bags not on the front of luggage area.
Call from the embassy scam
Many of us receive calls from people who claim being someone from the Embassy. They have several details about you always: like your name, telephone number, etc. Typically, they will tell you that there were some errors in some form you filled up, and unless you pay a fine immediately, you will be send back. They will make it look like that the phone is coming from the registered telephone number of our Embassy.
This is an international scam for Indians, and Indians living acorss the world are losing their money in this. Do not worry if you happen to get a call like this.