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Walking around with money in Santiago

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Walking around with money in Santiago

As I browse some of the postings in the forum I see that pickpockest are a problem in some areas of Santiago.Coming from small city Canada where this is a not a problem I was wondering how I should go out at night-where to put a wallet and money? Do I need to carry ID documents with me such as passport? What other suggestions do you have?

Sydney, Australia
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1. Re: Walking around with money in Santiago

I always feel totally at home in Santiago and also very safe. Pickpockets are all over the world and one has to take precaution in any city of the world when traveling.

I usually leave all my valuables in my hotel room safe and never carry all my credit cards/ money if going out.

I usually carry my ATM or Credit Card and a small amount of cash, enough to get me through a dinner or drinks in my jeans/ trouser pocket.

I NEVER carry my passport with me in any city of the world. I leave it in my hotel room safe.

Santiago to me is one of the safest cities in Sth America.

Santiago, Chile
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2. Re: Walking around with money in Santiago

You would only need identification for two things: changing traveler's cheques or booking an international bus ticket (Santiago to Mendoza, for instance). Otherwise a photocopy of your passport is fine.

If you are not used to large cities then you need to be aware of how most street crime works (a fairly universal pattern in big cities), although Santiago is probably the safest capital city in SA. Basically: pickpockets, people who snatch and grab and people who spray something on your back and then offer to clean you off as they clean you out.

If you are very worried about it, use a guide or take tours to where you want to go. You shouldn't have to fret on holiday!

Oxon Hill, Maryland
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3. Re: Walking around with money in Santiago


We always divide our money and put 1/3 in each front pocket and the other 1/3 in our wallets (we stick to small bills, nothing larger than a $50 bill at most)even though we have never had a problem and have never felt threatened. As far as your passport, never carry the original. I do, however, keep a photo copy with me at all times just in case something should happen that I can't speak for myself. Also, leave the expensive, flashy, jewelry at home or in the room safe.

My husband also has a belt with the hidden zipper on the inside, for emergencies.

Also, I don't know if they are still doing it this year, like last. There was a big problem with young people going through the passenger side windows of the cars and stealing the purses or packages on the front street. That may have been a passing phase, don't know if it's still going on.

The Chilean Central...
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4. Re: Walking around with money in Santiago

I never use a wallet in Chile. Like the others, just enough cash and then some in another pocket or hidden area to get me through the day or evening and a debit or credit card if necessary, my expat insurance card and a list of important numbers.

Pickpockets use the universal theme of distraction and the snatch and runners wait for the opportune moment you let your guard down to grab or rip away your handbag, backpack or cell phone. Remember that most work in teams and have accomplices who help them pick targets and escape capture. It is for this reason I prefer to exchange money with 0 other persons interaction - at an ATM with discretion rather than a cambio.

5. Re: Walking around with money in Santiago

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