People to Avoid, Barcelona
If you don't have much spare change on you, do your best to ignore the street performers. There are a lot in the touristy areas (such as Las Ramblas) and many will expect you to give them money if you watch their show, take a picture of them, or if they come to your table while you're at an outdoor cafe. Also, if you don't give them money, some will get pissed off at you.
Unique Suggestions: Bring some spare change, and give a few coins to the performers that put on a show for you.
Especially around Las Ramblas, but really at any outdoor cafe (Catalunya, Passeig de Gracia, wherever) - you'll get these people randomly strumming a Spanish guitar and then asking for money. Personally I just emphatically shake my head until they go away, but it's entirely up to you if you want to throw them a euro!
Unique Suggestions: Maybe just give your money to the good ones. Some of them are just plain bad.
Fun Alternatives: Save that euro for another glass of cava!
What's a guiri? Is a tourist that do several classic behaviors. Scape if you can.
But if you want to become it, is easy. To beging, you must go in the beach and make your skin all the red that you can. Are you red yet? Is the moment to go in a tablao flamenco, and pay a good money for to see four persons dancing flamenco for first time in their life, to get a little bit money this summer. Barcelona is specyally good for this. Inthe flamenco show, clap your hands and sey "ole, ole". Don't you feel ridiculous? Well, you are becoming a guiri, but still you are not. It's indispensable that you go in the Rambles and buy a mexican hat and walk with them. Finally, when you return at home, make a page in VT, and put the tittle: "Ole Barcelona" or "Viva Barcelona".
If you see a group of people one of them with a cardboard box, 3 glasses and a ball don’t stop!!! It’s a very old swindle but there are still now some people who don’t know it… They’ll try you bet to guess where is the ball, it seems easy but it’s a swindle… The best: don’t stop, sometimes there are “pickpockets” around "working" with them… In the exceptional case you win probably they will hit you in order to recover the money!
Fun Alternatives: Don't play! don't stop!
Whilst walking down the Ramblas and further down onto the pier (called Barceloneta) and connecting shopping complex a group of children with blue clipboards came up to us and asked if we could give them money for charity and showed us a bad photocopy of a sponsor form. These kids are gypsies and will just put your money in thier pockets and give it to thier parents. They will not give it to charity.
If you are seated and you have your wallet, glasses or money on your table, do not let them put the clipboard over your items because they will steal them.
Do not let them surround you as they will pick pocket you if given the chance.
Just keep an eye out for a large group of kids with blue clipboards and stay clear of them.
DO NOT FALL FOR THE FACT THAT THEY ARE KIDS. THEY ARE OUT TO STEAL YOUR MONEY!!!
Unique Suggestions: Ignore children asking for money for charity.
Fun Alternatives: Walk away immediately and dont fall for the aaaahhhhh!! sweet children gag.
Be aware of anybody walking close to you and/or behind you. Always keep a strong hold of your valuables. We witnessed people trying to open purses on pedestrian crossings, in railway stations or airport.
The subway is another area you have to be on guard. They operate in gangs and, if you are not on guard, they take advantage.
The warning is to make you aware of the reality and enjoy the city without spoiling your vacation by an unwanted event. We spent a week in Spain and enjoyed it very much, but witnessed also some forgetful events - like someone trying to steel the tip we left for the waiter at a terasse.
Unique Suggestions: Be aware of the people around you. Crowded areas, subway, railway stations, airports are ideal places for thieves. We witnessed people trying to steal while crossing a busy avenue in Madrid.
Fun Alternatives: Be aware and keep hold of your visible valuables.
just off las ramblas, home to a great falafel shop and a few cool bars but also home to every schemer in the world. don't believe anything these guys who hang around the centre tell you. don't go side streets with them no matter what they say they can sell you. it's pretty safe physically - there's loads of police around.
In Les Rambles at night, there are people who play with shakers in little tables. CAUTION! BE CAREFUL! They put a little ball into one of their four or three shakers on the table and after make bets, they will ask you where is the ball and you SURE won't guess, because they always cheat! Also, the man who moves the shakers has friends among the people who is seeing the game and they are pickpockets...
Be aware of thieves-gangs. They are everywhere and very fast. Especially in internet cafés keep an eye on your bag since the cafés are often crowded. people coming and leaving; you won´t notice them taking your stuff.
mike malloy and his band of bandits try to rob you on the la ramba by asking you for the time and while you do that a second man comes from berhind bumps you and then takes your wallet .
Unique Suggestions: watch out for that silly sob
Fun Alternatives: be bold
!!! Warning !!!
When I came to Barcelona, one told to me that there were a lot of boutiques on the 'diagonal' street. However, nothing of all that was true: just some small kiosks of memories or florists. Therefore it is not necessary to waste his time on this street, it is necessary to leave rather in the small alleys to discover the truly Barcelona.
Warning also to your business, even though you are in group. The thieves are very gifted.
You should just take care when walking through Ramblas , for pick pockets and some experts to take advantage to take your personal things...
Barcelona its safe city but you must have an eye on your things!
While on Las Rambles you will see someone with portable tables set up and conducting a gambling SCAM.
They will have three object (i.e.: match boxes or shells or anything they can use) They will ask you to pick one and try to find the pebble or bead. They will typically have two to three other people working it with them however, they will look like tourists. They are allowed to win several times to convince others how easy it it. TRUST ME it is a scam.... and YOU WILL NOT WIN. (I'll bet money on it) So don't be tempted.
Its not unknown for pickpockets and muggers to operate around the Rambla area so keep valuables well hidden.I was even warned when using my camera in the market,my Dad always says 'try to look like a mugger and not a mugee'but then he's a scruffy bugger.
The Kabul House - I can't warn you enough. WEll its more outside in the square where the action takes place, but if you're anything like me when you \finally decided to return to the hostel, you can't really fight off a gang of theives. Ha. Actually I did try one night. Drunk old me did a karate chop at some poor unsuspecting guys who were pickpocketing a girl not 2 meters away from me and my friend. Hmm Silly stuff that. They could've killed me, but considering how stupid it was they must have figured I was a psycho or somthing and left. Anyways thats another one of those stories I should really learn from.