Crime levels are generally low in Italy but there are higher levels of petty crime such as bag snatching and pick-pocketing in the big city centres. Be aware that thieves can use a variety of methods to distract you. So, here are some safety tips.
- Take care on public transport and in crowded areas in city centres, especially in and around Termini station in Rome and at other main stations. Be particularly vigilant on trains to and from the main airports in Italy and when unloading your baggage from trains and coaches.
- If you are going to drink, know the limit as alcohol and drugs can make you less alert and less aware of your environment. Drinks served in bars overseas are often stronger than those in your home country. It is also recommended not to leave food or drinks unattended at any time as you can be robbed or even assaulted.
- Choose your bag wisely. Handbags are a favourite target of thieves in Italy. The choice of handbag can make a difference. Aside from shoulder straps try to take a bag with inner compartments which have zips and keep money and documents as well as other vacation essentials like mobile phones and cameras zipped in these inner pockets.
- Men usually keep wallets in their pockets, which is common knowledge to the world’s pickpockets. In crowded areas wallets carried in back pockets make an attractive target for thieves. To reduce risk, don’t carry a wallet, or if you do, carry it in a marsupial type of bag which should be mounted under your belly. Alternatively, carry cash in your front trouser pockets and credit cards in one of those slim transparent plastic cases in the same place.
- Markets in Italy are attractive locations for tourists and thieves. To reduce a risk of being robbed it is recommended to dress conservatively and try to blend in with the locals in cities.