"Puerta del Sol - Pickpockets" Security Tip by adzz

Security, Madrid: 77 reviews and 23 photos

My wife and I were staying in central Madrid in 2009. We've visited Puerta del Sol a few times but during one evening there a pickpocket got my wife's purse from her handbag. She was carrying her handbag as normal on her shoulder and I was walking right next to her, but we didn't see or feel anything.

We had a good idea when the theft occurred...

We were in a nightclub on Calle de la Cruz and before we left the venue, my wife checked her handbag and her purse was safely in there. We exited the club and headed south down Calle de la Cruz. Five minutes later when we met Calle de Atocha my wife went to put our camera into her handbag and her purse was GONE! We believe the pickpocket got us on Calle de la Cruz (either inside the nightclub near the exit or outside on the street).

Luckily there was no cash or credit cards inside my wife's purse, so the pickpocket was unlucky that time...ha-ha! Ironically, my wallet was in my back trouser pocket which was unbuttoned with 2 credit cards, a debit card, 300 euros, my driving licence and various other cards. So I was VERY lucky considering that was an easier theft opportunity for the pickpocket!!

The pickpockets in Madrid are very slick and they will rob you blind. Puerta del Sol is the most notorious area for pickpockets as well as the metro subway. The real professionals are Arabian, Cuban, Romanian, South American and African. They will rob you in a second and they also run various pickpocket scams in syndicates. They also strike in hotel lobbies, so watch your wallets, bags, laptops etc when you check-in/check-out at your hotel. Also watch out for groups of young girls and children, as they have very talented thumbs and fingers. The majority of these types of criminals are foreign, including Madrid's prostitutes who come from as far as South America.

If you get robbed in Madrid, you need to go to this police station and file a theft report at address: Calle de Leganitos 19.

My advice to tourists is:

Enjoy Madrid, but be vigilant!

DO NOT carry handbags, wallets or bags or anything of value in your pockets.

Leave all of your valuables at the hotel. If you NEED to carry passports, money, etc on your body
then use a strap-on money holder and wear it around your waist, under your clothes.

THINK! The less you have, the less they can steal from you. If you need to carry valuables then take precautions and do it safely and out of sight of thieves.

LADIES, you are the easier targets with your lovely handbags. I would advise you not to carry them in Madrid, but if you absolutely must carry your handbag, keep it in front of you, in your sight, and with your hand on top of it.

Don't say I didn't warn you.

Good luck and be safe.

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Jan 3, 2010
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