Home TIPS Paris, France: Criminals Cause Louvre Workers' Strike
Paris, France: Criminals Cause Louvre Workers' Strike PDF Print E-mail

A recent one-day labor action at the famed Louvre museum should give all senior travelers something to think about. The museum employees weren’t asking for more money, but protection against gangs of aggressive pickpockets who’ve just about taken over the famed Paris institution.

If your spring and summer plans include visiting Paris or just about any other large city, follow the basic rules of self protection from street crime. Senior tourists are particularly easy targets, because pickpockets know they react slowly and are too often distracted while they take in the city sights.

Here are some very basic rules for protecting yourself as you travel this season:

1. Blend in: In clothing and attitude, don’t stand out from the local population with flashy duds that mark you as a clueless tourist. Dress modestly and sensibly for doing your wandering around the city looking like a savvy citizen.

2. Limit money: Before you venture out on city streets, leave most cash in your hotel room safe. Take just enough for the day for use with local transportation, shopping and dining. 

3. Credit cards: OK to pay for hotel, train and air travel, but use them sparingly wandering in cities. Pay cash in restaurants and when buying from street merchants.  

4. Protect your assets: If you carry a purse, strap it around your shoulders and keep it snugly against your side under your elbow. Keep wallets in an inside pocket, preferably a zipped or buttoned one. Have coins and small-denomination bills in a handy outside pocket for quick purchases, tips and to give to kids and others asking for handouts.

5. Walk smart: If you’re very old or physically-challenged, never go out on the streets alone. It’s also a good rule for seniors to confine touring to daylight in cities notorious for pickpockets and muggers who roam the night. If you do go out at night, go with a group and stay with it.

By just following a few sensible rules, your chances of having a trouble-free trip go from iffy to excellent.


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