How to avoid having your passport stolen on holiday

Learn how quickly a pickpocket could steal your passport

How to Avoid Having Your Passport Stolen on Holiday

Losing your passport abroad is one way to completely ruin your holiday. Last year, more than 20,000 British passports were reported stolen and lost. So to ensure you know the potential threats from thieves on your summer holiday, the Foreign & Commonwealth Office has teamed up with stealth crime expert James Freedman to demonstrate the techniques used by thieves and offer you advice on keeping your passport safe in a new video.

Freedman says: "Pickpockets and thieves constantly evolve their techniques and tactics. If you don't need to take your passport with you, leave it in your hotel safe instead.

"Only carry what you need and keep valuables in a secure pocket. If you have a bag or case, never let it out of your sight."

He adds that travellers should be more alert in crowds and wary of anyone getting too close.

James advises: "Finally, try not to advertise the location of prized possessions by patting your pockets or bags. That's why you'll often find pickpockets near the 'Beware Pickpockets' sign!"

The Foreign Office revealed some of the pickpocketing cases this year, including a holidaymaker in Rome having his attention grabbed by a man knocking on the window of his railway carriage. At that moment, his partner in crime snatched his bag containing not only his passport but all of his valuable camera equipment.

In Peru, a backpacker was distracted by a local man 'accidentally' pushing him, giving his female accomplice the opportunity to grab his rucksack.

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