What’s up Guys!
Just wanted to share a few tips on staying safe while traveling. In the past year I have been robbed, pick pocketed, scammed, arrested and almost jumped. Here’s some advice about staying safe on the road.
Theft includes, burglary, robbery and pick pocketing. I recommend only leaving your apartment with enough cash to get your through the day. Shopping, food, drinks, etc. No need to walk around with a fat bank roll in your pocket. In developing countries people are watching your pockets… If they see something bulging in there, they know what it is. Just today I was paying for food and I locked eyes with someone off in the distance watching me pay and put away my money… Maybe he was just intrigued by the tall handsome foreigner? Or maybe he was counting my cash from a distance and wondering how he could get closer.
I ditched my old leather wallet and keep everything in a nice slim money clip in my front pocket. A phone is something we all must carry but I recommend keeping this is the front pocket as well. If you have a smart phone just be sure you use the combination lock so if it gets stolen, thieves cannot access your personal information. iPhone users can track a stolen phone and even erase all of the data remotely if necessary.
In crowded cities you often find yourself at a cross walk or in a market with dozens of people around you very close. Thieves are professionals when it comes to spotting your goods and slipping them out of your pockets. NEVER let strangers touch or hug you. If people invade your space push them back. Keep your hands on your front pockets in crowded places. Trust no one! Be friendly, but don’t invite strangers to your room or let them too close to you.
One night I was walking down the street in Saigon and two massage girls ran up to me. They asked if I wanted a massage and they started rubbing my cock. I quickly pushed them off of me and they ran off. Right away, I checked my pockets and realized my brand new iPhone 5 was gone… FUCK! I turned around and they were gone in the crowd of people. I couldn’t find them and I don’t even know what they look like it happened so fast. Damn… Just typing that makes my blood boil… I consider myself street smart and these whores still got me in five seconds. Be sharp out there guys.
Lock all valuables up in your apartment. If there is a safe then use it! This goes for when you leave for the day or when you have “guests” back to your room. One cool product is the PacSafe Travel Safe which is easy to travel with and allows you to secure your valuables to something solid in the room. A determined thief can get through anything but if you can slow them down enough they might give up. Most thieves like to move quickly. They are cowards and they fear being caught in the act. I wish I had something like this a few months ago… I had no safe in my apartment. Some asshole popped off two locks, broke in and cleaned me out within five minutes… Spending $80 on a travel safe would have saved me a few thousand dollars worth of electronics. Ah well, live and learn.
Next up let’s talk about partying. If you drink or do drugs just be careful about getting too fucked up out here. Especially if you are not out with friends. I saw some guy last night who was completely hammered. I mean fall down drunk stumbling into people. He was with a hooker and walking to his hotel. I’m assuming she was a hooker based on the fact that they walked out of a beer bar together and she was an inked up Asian broad half his age wearing a mini skirt… Anyways, I couldn’t help but feel worried for this guy. You know he’s just going to get back to the hotel and fall into bed. His rented “girlfriend” can do whatever she wants once he blacks out… Even if she took some cash, how would he know? I’m sure he won’t remember what he spent that night or where he was… This is dangerous guys.
We all love to party but try not to get too fucked up to the point you can’t handle yourself. You also set yourself up to be mugged. For example, if a group of local guys want to rough up a foreigner and go through his pockets, who do you think they will choose? A group of younger guys who are fit and sober? Or a fifty year old guy stumbling home alone in a dark alley. Criminals are cowards. They don’t want to rumble. They are after easy pickings. Being blind drunk only makes you look like a weak and easy target. If you are drinking all day throw a few waters in between those tequila shots.
Me personally, I do not trust hookers. I love to fuck them. I enjoy the massage parlors and BJ bars, but I never bring them to my room anymore. If it’s just my hotel for a few days OK! But if it’s my apartment for the next few months I don’t want them knowing where I live. What if they see all your nice things in your swanky condo and start plotting? Many of these girls have local boyfriends and they will tip them off about your room number and where you keep things… Be sharp. Short time hotels are very cheap in this part of the world. I know some guys like to have the “girlfriend experience” with hookers. Do whatever makes you happy, just be careful… Always remember, she does not care about you at all and you can not trust her! She only good for sex and nothing else. I recommend going “short time” with girls and sending them on their way.
Last bit of advice is about fighting. Just avoid it! A street smart, humble person will very rarely have to fight someone. The only problems I have ever had in Asia is with other westerners. Drunk assholes who start talking shit. If someone is obviously wasted and acting crazy just stay away from them. If he’s your friend then convince him to go home for the night. Nothing good comes out of fighting.
If you fight with a foreigner, you will get tossed out of the bar and possibly arrested. If you fight a local, you will get the shit kicked out of you by a pack of them and then possibly arrested. Maybe worse… You could get stabbed and left for dead. This is not your country and nobody is going to help you out here. You have no rights and the medical care is probably worse then your home country. If you fight a local then you are automatically guilty. Just stay humble and avoid confrontation.
Be willing to swallow your pride and say sorry. Walk away if a situation is getting tense. Hell, I suggest RUNNING if things start to get really heated. Sure that may be a bitch move… But I’d rather go to another bar or get a massage then get my head stomped by a group of guys. It’s just not worth it. Let it go!
One night in Vietnam I was talking with another foreigner at a bar. I’m American and I curse a lot. Often we use curse words to emphasize a statement. For example, this pizza is fuckin awesome! Well I was talking to this guy about traveling and at some point in the conversation I said, “yeah these fuckin Vietnamese girls last night…” This Vietnamese guy was sitting at the table next to us and said to me – “what did you say about Vietnamese girls?” He looked pissed off and I did my best to explain that I do not mean any disrespect. He thought I said “fuck Vietnamese girls.” Which of course, I would never say.
Anyways, shit cooled down but when I finished my drink, I paid my bill and left. Who knows what was going through their heads at that time. I wasn’t going to stick around while they get wasted for the next few hours and decide to try something. That may seem like a scared bitch move but fuck it! I went to another bar and had a blast. It reminds me of a story back in America. Two bikers got into an argument at the bar. People broke it up and everyone went back to drinking. Several minutes later one guy walked back into the bar with a shotgun and blew the other guy off his bar stool… Why didn’t the other guy just leave after that confrontation? Now it’s too late.
That’s it guys. It’s safe to travel but you just need to be street smart, respectful and stay humble. Always stay low key. Dress sharp but don’t flash your cash around in front of people. Drawing unnecessary attention to yourself is asking for trouble. Have fun, stay safe!