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Credit card pick pocket safety?
Old 06-23-2012, 10:13 AM   #1
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Credit card pick pocket safety?

I was thinking of a design for a way to carry one credit card on European travel that is pick pocket safe. What I'd like to have is a very small pouch that attaches to a belt loop so it can just be tucked under my slacks (or jeans). It should be easy to unobtrusively access the card without getting into a money/passport pouch.

Then while at an REI store I happened upon this little guy also sold through Amazon: Amazon.com: Eagle Creek Travel Gear Silk Undercover Bra Stash: Clothing

For guys you have to ignore the name of this product. A bit of an off putting title for a man but it does come in black (and rose for the ladies, I presume) . For guys (or even ladies) all you have to do is take something like a small piece of fish line and create a loop around your belt loop on the pants. Then attach the pouch to that. Now you can tuck it away under your pants.

I tried it at home and it works really well. Just pull it out, open the the pouch and you are armed and ready to pay the merchant. Maybe I've got too much time in ER to think about things like this?

Your thoughts? Other solutions?

P.S. There is a larger product that is good for passports and maybe extra cash: Amazon.com: Eagle Creek Travel Gear Undercover Hidden Pocket: Clothing I use it too but it's not convenient to access in very public places.
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Old 06-23-2012, 02:59 PM   #2
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Most Tilley clothing has a pocket inside the normal pocket, closed with velcro. This requires good sewing skills (or purchase of a Tilley garment). I had excellent luck with a pair of long Tilley khaki slacks on a year+ long budget travel, because they can be washed in a sink and dry overnight. No, I do not work for Tilley.
I never ever carry anything in my back pocket, so I don't know how many pickpockets tried there, but I had one young thief actually jam his hand into my front pocket, and the Tilley pocket confounded him.
Your solution might work, too. But I found it is very convenient to not have to reach under one's clothing to get things in public, especially when female in less progressive countries. My husband could not get to his moneybelt (another place we stashed things) without unbuckling his belt, and that can be interpreted as aggression.
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Old 06-23-2012, 03:13 PM   #3
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I have carried my thin wallet in my right front jeans pocket forever and have been all over the world without any problems with it there. That includes some dicey areas.

I have never used a money belt or other hiding device, but I have put my hands in my pockets.
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Old 06-23-2012, 03:26 PM   #4
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LOL, I'll still have a thin wallet too for straight cash.

toofrugalformycat: It's not going to really be a reach under the clothing as all I have to do is fish it straight up and then unsnap the little pocket. I'm pretty slim so no belly overlap. Should be an inconspicuous move although I haven't tried it yet. Need to do a test run soon.
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Old 06-23-2012, 03:28 PM   #5
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This leg carrier gets overall good reviews.

Amazon.com: Leg Money Belt: Clothing

I have stopped using a regular wallet. I have a card carrier-key ring combo, the keys are on a long nylon strap, and the card/money carrier tuck into the pants. If you don't wear a belt, a very hard pull on the strap might be able to pull the rig from your body. I've used it every day for several years, with no wear noticed. I originally started using it to keep my stuff safe at a downtown gym.

Amazon.com: Sport Slimmy® Sport Wallet Requiring No Pockets: Shoes

I stick the card carrier part behind my belt and pants, but over my undershorts. It is easy to pull out to make payments. I carry some cash in my pants pocket so I never need to pull out the rig when I don't want to be noticed. In a hot climate it may be uncomfortable, but never has been for me here.

It also makes it unlikely that I would forget my house keys when i go out. I get used to the feel of that pouch on my abdomen, and check for it when I leave.

Ha
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Old 06-23-2012, 04:32 PM   #6
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I have a similar under clothes CC/cash holder that I picked up at the local AAA and have used it for years. It has a slide clip that attaches to the pant, just under the belt (which helps it from being stolen).

Since it's a pain to pull out, I use it exclusively for my "backup" CC (I always carry two, in case one is lost/stole or dosen't work, since most Euro country CC cards have the smart chip.

My primary card is always in my front pant pocket and kept in the opposite pocket of where I place my travel wallet.
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Old 06-24-2012, 12:44 AM   #7
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I have always used:

Thin wallet and cash in front pants pocket, which closes with velcro or button.

Passport in other front pants pocket, which also closes with velcro or button.

For extra safety, keep items in a ziploc bag, which creates much more friction when coming out of a pocket.

I've never had any problems or incidents.
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Old 06-24-2012, 06:31 PM   #8
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I ALWAYS carried wallet with cash and cards in my front right pocket and have been always safe. DW carries backpack with 3 pockets on top of each other and keeps everything in the last pocket (close to body). This bag really looks ugly.

Except your are visiting any of the PIGS countries (Portugal, Italy, Greece or Spain) you are safe. Only once I changed my routine and the guy watched me keeping wallet while entering in Athens metro and he tried to pick my wallet (but failed as the pocket was zipped and was pretty tight to take out easily).

My suggestion is, always avoid that looks obvious, same goes for camera bags.
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Old 06-24-2012, 06:52 PM   #9
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On another thread someone mentioned how they had pants with 2 buttons on a front pocket and a pick pocket still managed to get the wallet. I think it was in a subway (people crush) situation.

I agree that a wallet in the front pocket is pretty safe and has always worked for me. So for just cash I'll do that, but maybe for a credit card I'd rather be safe then sorry. Especially if the extra caution is easy to implement.
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Old 06-24-2012, 07:16 PM   #10
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A stolen credit card is less worry to me than stolen cash since I don't lose anything if the card is stolen. I don't carry much cash when going overseas (or in the US for that matter).

I have a separate checking account with its own ATM card for travel. I preload that account with a few hundred dollars before I go on a trip and sometimes use the ATM card to get foreign currency. If my ATM card is skimmed or stolen, then the idea is to close just that checking account while my main workhorse account is unaffected.

I was in the UK for a week this month and did not need to use cash at all and did not visit an ATM in the UK. I bought a bus ticket at a kiosk with my CapitalOne credit card. Taxis, pubs, hotels were all paid with credit card. It's a modern world out there.

Also, I don't have much in my wallet at any time: A health insurance card, a FF card, license, and a couple of credit cards, so it is thin all the time.
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Old 06-24-2012, 07:58 PM   #11
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I've travelled round the world (cities/rural areas/undeveloped countries which I won't name) and what works for me ALWAYS are deep front pockets with zips or velcro. I place passport/cash/credit cards in both pockets. Sometimes I tailor-make these pants or skirts with such pockets and sometimes I buy them off the rack. Many times, I just buy pants/skirts with deep pockets and add the velcro. Zips and velcro are the best because they prevent things from falling off when you have to visit dubious toilets - esp when the best being offered is like a hole in the ground. I'm also a golfer and when I golf in another country and staying in different hotels, I just pocket my valuables and golf with them. I am also forgetful, so leaving important things in my bag may be a high risk for me. Once I left my handbag in a changing room in a shopping mall with my credit cards and cash. I only realised my bag was missing when they announced my name in the mall to go to the security office.
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