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Documents when traveling within cities

We am going to be visiting Spain for 15 days or so. I have read a lot about the menace of pickpockets in Barcelona and Madrid. What is the best bet with carrying documents like Green cards and passports?

Do we keep them with us at all times and keep an eye on them or do we leave them in the hotel room?

Posted by
8889 posts

By "Green Card" I assume you mean a US Residence Permit. That serves no purpose outside the USA, leave it in your hotel.
The only valid ID is your passport. If you need to show ID, it will be your passport. I would keep that in an inside pocket, in case you need it. If you think you won't need to show ID, leave it in your hotel room.

You also need to bring enough cash for the day, not all your cash, leave the rest in your room. Plus a card (debit or credit) to get more cash or pay big bills (restaurants). Again, if you have multiple cards leave the rest in your hotel, then if the worst happens, you still have some cash and cards.

Posted by
935 posts

There are any number of threads concerning pickpockets and the benefits/liabilities of money belts and room safes for important documents. There are a number of perspectives, so I suggest you type in your requests in the Search block above. I suggest you start with the word pickpocket, which will net you a number of threads on that subject. Good luck.

Posted by
1260 posts

If you are stickler for the law, then you should be aware that (in Spain - other countries care different), you need to have photo ID if asked for it by the police/mossos/etc and, I suspect, in your case that means your passport (a "green card" probably means nothing here). In practice it is very unlikely you'll be asked and even if you are then many suggest a photocopy of your passport will suffice if you're an obvious tourist (at worst you'll then be taken back to your hotel to show the original). Spain is full of people not following the strict rule (who takes their passport to the beach?). Including non-national residents like me. Nevertheless, the rule is you should have photo ID on you.

Posted by
2914 posts

I admit, I never take my passport when out of my hotel and on 12 trips to Europe, it has never been a problem. I do take my US driver's license in case I need a photo ID with my credit card. It would also lend credibility if you tell an authority that you're a tourist.

Posted by
3467 posts

As with most everything, there are numerous opinions. We almost always carry our passports with us, in an inside pocket, inside a locked backpack pocket. The only times we are ever asked for it are when picking up the rental car and checking into a hotel. If we ever stay in a place for a few days, we may leave them in the room safe.

Posted by
334 posts

Money belt right next to my skin, under everything, always except when sleeping. That’s my piece of mind.