How The Key Tossing Scam Works:
This is a scam that happens mostly in Europe, where sidewalks are crammed with busy patios and coffee shops. Towards the end of the article, we will also offer you a video with 25 other scams you should be aware of while traveling.
Let’s say you are sitting at a table on the side of the street, really enjoying the vibrant atmosphere of Las Ramblas, Barcelona. People pass by you and everybody is friendly.
While you are sipping your drink, somebody is squeezing by your chair with the intention of passing by, on your right side. It’s a busy place, so you politely try to make some room.
As you are moving, he “accidentally” drops his keys right at your feet. Because you are sitting, it’s easy for you to bend slightly and pick them up, returning them to him.
In those five seconds, as you are doing your move while he is apologizing for almost hitting you, his partner grabs your bag/ purse, which was on the left side of your table (the initial guy passes by on your right side). Victims are distracted just for a few moments, but scammers are ready to operate. Since they are doing this several times a day, they are so smooth that it’s unnoticeable.
Watch the video below to see 25 other travel scams you should be aware of:
How To Avoid The Key Tossing Scam:
Hold your bag between your legs and if it has a shoulder strap, put your leg through the strap – it could lead to a funny scenario but at least you will keep your bag.
How To Report the Key Tossing Scam:
Make your family and friends aware of this scam by sharing it on social media using the buttons provided on this page. Feel free to mention the cities and the places where this scam occurs.
How To Protect Yourself More:
If you want to be the first to find out the most notorious scams every week, feel free to subscribe to the Scam Detector newsletter here. You’ll receive periodical emails and we promise not to spam. Last but not least, use the Comments section below to expose other scammers.