Foil fast fingers with hidden pockets
AMID reports of predatory pickpockets assailing tourists in Paris and Rome - two of the most popular European destinations in summer - a United States company is promoting what it calls pickpocket-proof trousers designed to foil aggressors.
New York-based Clothing Arts has created a line of travel cargo trousers with multiple layers of security against fast fingers. The layers include button flaps, hidden zipper closures and an inner pocket for smartphones.
Pickpockets would also have to get past three layers of enclosures to get to the passport pocket, where users can keep their valuables. The nylon material is slash-proof to protect travellers from dangerous pickpockets.
Earlier this year, security staff at the Louvre museum in Paris and tour guides at the Vatican walked off the job, in protest against unsafe working conditions amid the alarming rise - and audacity - of pickpockets and thugs.
The creator of Clothing Arts' convertible trousers, Mr Adam Rapp, said he came up with the idea after falling victim to a pickpocket during a trip abroad.
The trousers, which can be converted into shorts, sell for US$115 (S$145) and Clothing Arts ships to 30 countries worldwide, including Singapore.
Clothing Arts is not the first company to come up with pickpocket-proof apparel. Scottevest sells tops and vests stitched with up to 24 hidden pockets on the inside, while the Clever Travel Companion sells undergarments which have hidden pockets to keep travel documents.
Meanwhile, one easy and budget-friendly way for male travellers to pickpocket-proof their wallets is to bind them with elastic bands.
The premise: The elastic bands serve as a bumper, making it more difficult to withdraw the wallet smoothly which, in turn, alerts victims right away that they are being targeted.