Buenos Aires is a big, beautiful city and offers everything that an international visitor could want. Beautiful architecture, European styled outdoor cafes, great shopping, resto-bars, wine, steak, etc. But, this also means that one must be careful to avoid pickpockets and other naer-do-wells. Here are some Buenos Aires safety tips from Say Hueque travelers to help you enjoy the city and avoid problems.
When visiting, many people carry a handbag that zips shut, with the strap across the chest and the bag in front. (A messenger bag sort of look)
Never put your bag on the back of a chair no matter where you are. Keep it in your lap or if you are sitting in a booth, on the side of you away from the street..
Don’t carry or wear anything that’s designer and/or fake designer. Just a plain bag that will hold your things will do. Same goes for jewelry and nice watches. They aren’t necessary and can draw unwanted attention. Leave the Rolex at home.
Tell your husband (or boyfriend) not to count his money in the street. (I actually saw someone do this today- he and his wife were at an ATM machine, he walked out of the bank and stood on the sidewalk, counting his cash before he stuck it in his backpack!!) This is just asking for problems, honestly.
When walking around Recoleta or San Telmo, be prepared for the “Old Mustard” scam. How does it work? A nice, young woman will bump into you and say, “Excuse me sir, you have a stain on your bag or jacket”. She will offer to help you get the stain off, while her unseen friend will pickpocket you or grab the bag and run. SOLUTION? Just tell her, “No, thank you. No, gracias.” and keep walking, into a shop if possible, where you can look at your bag or jacket in a safe, controlled environment. It is better to ignore her and feel like you are being, “rude”, then to lose your bag.
That said, the majority of travelers and foreign residents of Buenos Aires never have any problems. Just pay attention, keep your cool and you will be fine.
For more information about Buenos Aires safety or to start planning your trip to Argentina, contact Say Hueque and one of our travel specialists will be happy to help you.