Germany is generally recognized as a safe place with a strong police force, low corruption and fair justice system. However, as in most places in the world, both residents and visitors should take certain precautions when traveling in Germany. Here are a few general tips for avoiding pick pockets and other thieves:
• Don’t bring a purse with you or keep your wallet in your back pocket. Bring just enough money with you for the day and keep it in your front pocket.
• Do not leave any unattended items in your car, not even in the trunk.
• Know where you are going. Study maps ahead of time to avoid getting lost or wandering around. Thieves target people who are distracted.
• Keep your cameras out of sight. Use them only when needed and keep them hidden the rest of the time.
• Keep your luggage near you on the train. People’s luggage can be stolen while they are sleeping or because they left it in the luggage compartment in the back of the car. It’s best to keep your luggage at your feet or on your lap at all times.
Recently, German Law Enforcement Authorities have publicized information about a new criminal scam in which ‘false police officers’ steal money from foreign nationals, mostly tourists. You can find out more about this new, nefarious scheme at the website for the Hessen Police.
If you do not live in Hessen, check out www. Polizei.de, which can direct you to the police website for your corner of Germany.