Video-Female Pickpockets in Vietnam Target Male Travelers

BY Beth Williams

Pickpockets in Vietnam target male travelers. Watch the following video which caught pickpockets stealing from tourists visiting Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam. See how a street gang of men and young women work quickly and efficiently together to target men.

Don’t Be A Victim of Pickpockets in Vietnam

Here’s how the crime occurs. Members of the gang are assigned different tasks in order to steal from male tourists. The victims are typically targeted by thieves driving motorbikes looking for foreign travelers who look drunk after coming out of restaurants and bars. When the thieves find a potential victim, they let off a female member from the back of the bike. The female walks up to the victim, pretending to be a street peddler, or interested in him and engage him in conversation.

The female starts coming on sexually by rubbing the male victim’s thigh or crotch area while using her “free hand” to remove the victim’s wallet or mobile phone from their pocket. You will see in the video that once the wallet/phone has been taken, the female pickpocket passes it off to a male member of the gang who is standing behind the unsuspecting victim. The two thieves then quickly leave by speeding off on a motorbike.

How the Pickpockets Work

In one of these thefts, the victim catches the thieves in the act and is able to get his mobile phone back that was stolen from his back pocket. According to the police, the pickpocket team would gather in areas of Ho Chi Minh City where young tourists congregate.  These areas include Bui Vien, Pham Ngu Lao, De Tham, and Tran Hung Dao.

While Ho Chi Minh Police have said that they have shut down this gang by arresting around 30 suspects related to this group of pickpocketing thieves, the video is a good reminder for men to keep their guard up especially when it comes to pretty young local women in tourist areas.

Video of Female Pickpockets Targeting Male Tourists in Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam

Here is another video of a traveler to Vietnam who fell victim to a child pickpocket 

Being targeted by a pickpocket gang can happen anywhere in the world, counter being a victim by never putting your wallet or cell phone in your back pocket. The back pocket is the “sucker pocket”. As you saw in this pickpocket video, a skilled female pickpocket was even able to remove the victim’s phone right out of his front pocket due to the “distraction.”

For even greater security, consider using one of the several pickpocket prevention wallets that can provide an additional layer of security. Here are two to consider. This one is the Discreet Secret Sliding Belt Loop Wallet attaches to your belt and drops down inside of your pants.

Here is another anti-pickpocket product that can help protect your wallet and/or mobile phone. The Pacsafe Coversafe 125 Travel Belt Wallet features a steel cable wire that is embedded into the hidden belt loop that secures the wallet to your belt. The steel wire is used to provide extra snatch and grab protection for your wallet in case the thief was able to get her (or his) hand in the front of your pants somehow – which is pretty easy as you saw in the above video.

This type of belt money wallet is easy to use. Simply take off your belt and when you put it back on, slide your belt thru the security belt loop. You then tuck the wallet into the front of your pants. When you need to get to your phone or money, simply pull the wallet out from your waistband, and unzip the pocket to get to what you need.
The nice thing about this security wallet it that it stays secured to your belt – with the extra protection of the embedded steel wire.

Tips to Avoid Scams and From Being Ripped Off in Vietnam

Bag snatching by motorbike bandits–
Most frequently in larger cities like in Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi and Nha Trang are on the increase. Injuries can occur when travelers attempt to hold onto their bags. If this happens to you while you’re crossing the road, let the bag go. Your safety is more important than your belongings. This also underscores why you should carry valuables like your passport and credit cards in a money belt or body pouch and on your person. If you must carry a backpack, carry an anti-theft backpack to thwart pickpockets and thieves.

Currency switching –
In Vietnam, prices can be quoted in the local currency which is the Vietnamese Dong yet many prices for food, hotels, and transportation are quoted in US dollars this is particularly true in popular areas with tourists. Make sure you confirm what currency a price is in before you buy. Know if a street vendor tells you that something is “eight”  they might mean 8,000 dongs (approx 35 cents), or 8 US dollars, big difference. Read more travel tips for Vietnam.

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