In Buenos Aires the most frequent problems involve bag snatching. Be alert: con-men have robbed tourists while an accomplice pretends to help remove ketchup or mustard which has been “accidentally” sprayed on them. Another common occurrence is the slitting of handbags in crowded places. Be particularly attentive in popular tourist areas, such as San Telmo or Florida street. You should avoid carrying too much cash or wearing ostentatious jewellery.
Avoid isolated or poorly lit areas at night. Hail moving taxis rather than those waiting at the kerbside, or use a radio taxi.
When travelling on local buses and trains, remain alert at all times. Pickpockets are rife. If you are robbed, you should inform the local police; a police report will be required by your insurers and by the Embassy if you need a new passport. In Buenos Aires, a 24-hour police helpline in English has been opened, on telephone number 101, to help victims. There is also a new multi-lingual free phone number for tourist assistance: 0800 999 5000. This goes through to the Tourist Police Station.
Passports should be left in a safe/security box except when being used for identification purposes eg. expensive purchases, cashing travelers checks. Keep a photocopy of the details page of your passport with you at all times. Passports are required as identification for internal flights.
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