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IS ENGLAND SAFE TO TRAVEL?

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  • Post last modified:February 18, 2024
  • Reading time:9 mins read

The United Kingdom is the top tourist destination everyone wants to visit at least once in their life, whether you are visiting the green planes of Ireland, enjoying the famous Scottish culture, watching your share of rugby games in Wales, or just mingling around London, it is the country to be if you are yearning for some new experiences and a different breath of Europe.
While it is a very safe country, it should be noted that it is filled with tourists, and as such, it is an excellent place for pickpockets and scam artists to circulate, so this is an issue in popular cities and landmarks. Apart from that, the United Kingdom is ranked 33rd on ranking the world’s safest and most dangerous countries.
London, the capital city of England and the United Kingdom, is where thieves are most active. Overall, the city is pretty safe for travellers; watch out for these common scams in and around the rest of England.

England safe?
  • Pickpockets in England
  • Beggars in London
  • England city safety
  • Common scams in England
  • Racism in England
    Pickpockets in England
    Like most countries in the world, England has its fair share of pickpockets. On average, most pickpockets work in crowded areas or where a crime can go unnoticed, with the Christmas holidays being a ‘sweet period’ for thieves to congregate.
    Victoria Station in London is a favorite hunting ground for thieves. They will distract you and take your belongings. By the time the inspecting victim realizes, it’s usually too late. Pickpockets look like ordinary people and analyze human behavior, so if you are the guy in the flash grey suit with the Blackberry, you are likely to be a target!
    The innocent crowds on the London Underground are prey for pickpockets. They get as close to you as possible and maneuver in when you are either exiting the tube or when the tube stops for them to make a quick getaway. It’s hard to believe, but there are a majority of pickpockets in England who are foreign, who love to target tourists – women are most vulnerable.
    Pubs, clubs, cafes, and restaurants attract thieves who like to perform the old snatch and grab. To prevent crime, it is advised that you don’t leave your bag hooked onto the back of your chair. While walking around, try not to leave valuables in the zip compartments of your backpack, and don’t walk around with your phone in your trouser, coat, or back pockets. If you think you have had something stolen, you can report it to the transport police or the nearest police station; also, remember to get your travel insurance before you depart to the UK. Get a quote
    Beggars in London
    Although there has been a major crackdown on beggars by the government, a few Eastern Europeans, predominantly Romanian and Bulgarian females, still exist in places such as Mayfair, Marble Arch, and Oxford Street. These scarved Gypsies (as some put it) are sometimes with their children, but more often than not, they are mostly alone and are harmless.
    It is not so common these days, but some beggars (usually males) come aboard trains or on the underground to ask for ‘small change’ to get themselves home. Some people give them money, but they are usually ignored, which is fine to do, as the beggar will move on to the next carriage. Other “touts” may approach you; state they’ve lost their travel card, and ask you to withdraw money for them.
    Travelcard Beggars
    Oyster cards are a wide phenomenon in London; however, if you aren’t using one or any form of contactless technology (the UK issued Visa, MasterCard, etc.), you’re likely to have a travelcard. It is not as typical as it once was, but you may find some “shady” characters outside your local train station soliciting for your used travelcard. Some will either have some for sale or ask if they can buy your travelcard for a fraction of the price or have it for free. Begging is illegal in the UK, so it is up to the individual what they choose to do in this situation.
    Safety In England’s Cities
    The city of Manchester is highly regarded for its football team heritage; its culture is vibrantly light by those blue and red scarves. But even as a Metropolitan rainbow, Manchester was once known as “Manchester.” Albeit, by the late “two thousand,” gun crime had decreased dramatically due to tighter sentencing.
    A Birmingham resident reports that the Manchester city center is mostly a nice place to visit, though gang violence has been creeping in and thieves are in full swing. At the weekends, the city is thriving with a buzzing nightlife, leading to anti-social behavior. Locals also warn against the following areas: Tottenham, Blackpool, Sheffield, Leeds, Rotherham, Middlesbrough, Birmingham, and Bradford.
    Common Scams In England
    In addition to pickpocketing and other thieving tactics, some scams occur throughout England.
  • Car burglary
    Thieves won’t be shy to help themselves if they see valuable items on display in your vehicle. If you have laptops, handbags, expensive clothing, or Sat Nav’s, lock them away in the boot and make sure all electrical items are switched off as the signal can be tracked. It takes seconds to smash a window leaving you with a hefty bill to repair your car, and you disposed of your valuables.
  • ATMs scams
    “Cashpoints,” “cash machines,” or “hole in the wall” are some of the terms used to describe an ATM in England. The universal scam here is the art of distraction. Thieves may be so bold as to come right up to you while you’re using an ATM. This goes against the common courtesy of standing a respectable distance behind the person completing a transaction.
    Other times, a group of perpetrators will wait until you’ve entered your PIN and try and record it, then distract you with conversation and take your bank card and cash. If someone walks up to you mid-transaction, hit cancel immediately.
  • Ticket scams
    We all know that you’d love to join the nutty football crowds chanting those mantras at the stadium or see Adele in concert. Still, ticket touts will often practice illicit behavior as a means to sell tickets outside the backdoor of venues at inflated prices. Some will have second-hand tickets that, if purchased, may refuse you entry to the event.
    Ticket touts will often snap up tickets for big gigs and flog them on secondary sites as soon as they are on sale. The British government has introduced rules to regulate this practice to protect consumers. Be careful when buying tickets off secondary ticketing sites that aren’t legit. Many people have been ripped off after paying above face value prices for fake tickets or ones that don’t arrive! Scams while living abroad in England
  • Bank scams
    If you are residing in the UK for a while and plan on getting a British bank account, too, beware of bank scam emails. They usually state something wrong with your account or that your information needs updating. Please DO NOT click on them or click through to any links associated with them. If you want to check that everything is fine with your account, call or visit your bank.
  • Job scams
    Yes, this does happen! Any company advertising on Gumtree is a suspect. As you relentlessly apply for that dream job, your details are exposed every time you post your CV. You will eventually get a call from a beguiling ‘recruiter’ claiming they want to interview you or that you have been successful in the role. Many will ask you to transfer money to cover training costs or facilitate accommodation. DO NOT be a victim; if this does happen, use the force and hang up the phone, do not give your bank details out either.
    If you become a victim of fraud, you can report it to Action Fraud, the UK’s national fraud and cybercrime reporting center.
  • International student scams in England
    Criminal masterminds have a fresh appetite for International students. You may receive a telephone call or a phishing email from someone pretending to be from a genuine establishment like the UK Home Office. They will claim something is wrong with your visa and want you to disclose personal information such as your bank details. Please note that legitimate officers will never contact you for money; these are fraudulent actions.
    Another trick to be wary of is website masquerading. These are created to look like legitimate ones. There are a number of bogus colleges and universities that fraudsters have designed to invite aspiring students overseas to study in the UK and sell faux degrees and qualifications. If you are studying in the UK, avoid the plight and contact the educational provider directly to check that they are official.
    Culture And Racism In England
    England is a multi-cultural melting point and accepts different races and religions. The nation appreciates and aims to live in harmony. Some years ago, the Race Relations Act was introduced by parliament to tackle discrimination, common bigotry, and prejudice over concerns for migrants who wanted to make the UK their home. Although the latter has been addressed, and it might seem unimaginable that this is no utopia, you will still find some tension and racism between some citizens in parts of England.