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Freaking out about the "securest" bag to buy for Paris

London, United...
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Freaking out about the "securest" bag to buy for Paris


Based on the threads I have read about the pickpocketing and the best hand bag to use in paris, I now have to buy an across the body bag, with a zip and a flap but I cant find one that I like.

Does it have to have a top zip? Cant I just hold it across my body really close to me? How aggressive/ blatant are these pickpockets?

Tonbridge, United...
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1. Re: Freaking out about the "securest" bag to buy for Paris

I've not found them to be any worse than in any other big touristy city.

I'd go for a zip as a preference, but currently have a deep bag I wear on my shoulder. The handles aren't long, so anyone groping would have to put their hand in my arm pit first. I also have a purse chain attaching my purse to my bag... not that it's ever been tested.

Denver, Colorado
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2. Re: Freaking out about the "securest" bag to buy for Paris

I don't think you need any special bag. Just bring your London favorite.

I have never had a single problem in Paris - but I don't carry a large stash of cash in an unzipped purse while loudly pondering how to use the metro map on a crowded train ;-)

(Exaggerating of course, but I think being aware of your surroundings and appearing to know where you're going, even if you don't, will really be the best protection).

Ottawa, Canada
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3. Re: Freaking out about the "securest" bag to buy for Paris

Just think of all the residents of Paris who take the buses and metros every single day with their regular purses or backpacks,as well as texting on their iPhones and talking with their friends.

I just take whatever purse I have from home that works with the season I'm going in, but I'm aware of my surroundings, keep my hand on my purse at all times when I'm in transit, don't let the purse hang off a chair when I'm eating at a cafe or bistro, and don't talk to any strangers who come up to me for no reason.

Be aware, but don't be paranoid. It's Paris, not a war zone, lol.

Enjoy your trip to the most beautiful city in the world!


Kaua'i, HI
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4. Re: Freaking out about the "securest" bag to buy for Paris

Aloha from Kaua'i!

There are tons of threads on the "best" purse to foil a possible pick-pocket here on TA. Everyone has different experiences and suggestions I have found - some people travel there for years and never have it happen to them -some have it happen on their first visit despite reading up on the "best bag" to have.

Personally - on my first visit (2010) I went the cross-body messenger bag with a zip and a flap that I could hug to my front - which I did. I still found a hand coming out of my bag on a crowded Metro (luckily she didn't get anything of value, just a hair clip!). I was lucky and knew it and took to being more aware of who was standing close to me from then on!

These days I use a black leather vintage bag I bought in the Marais last year with one zipper across the top and a long strap to wear cross body if you want - I keep my finger holding onto the pull tag on the zipper when on the Metro or other crowded place where I have no personal space.

Don't freak out - Paris is the safest big city I've ever been to - but you do need to be aware of pick pockets. Read up as much as you can, don't scare yourself (no one is going to hurt you!) and do the best you can - Paris will enchant you I'm sure!

BYW, I'm going back this September - and taking that black bag from the Marais for sure!

Malama Pono (take care)


Newcastle, Australia
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5. Re: Freaking out about the "securest" bag to buy for Paris

Hi there

It's a bit sad due to traveling but I loved my Bennetton bag. Across the shoulder, quite deep without looking "Clunky".

Kind Regards


Sydney, Australia
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6. Re: Freaking out about the "securest" bag to buy for Paris

I agree 100% with Jo.

My primary consideration when choosing a bag to travel with is that it is light. I am not interested in padlocking it, ensuring it's reinforced or any of the other (imo) extremes others seem to consider necessary.

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7. Re: Freaking out about the "securest" bag to buy for Paris

I also agree with Jo. I use whatever I have at the time and DON"T take my passport, lots of cash or more than one credit card with me and that is always in an inside pocket in the handbag. By the time my glasses case, a packet of tissues and a couple of biros go in the bag - the card is almost buried anyway, All my handbags have short handles and are carried under my armpit as normal usage.

Paris, France
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8. Re: Freaking out about the "securest" bag to buy for Paris

No reason to be paranoid. Just be aware or your surroundings and follow the advice mentioned above and you'll be fine. No special bag needed, use what you're comfortable with.

Ottawa, Canada
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9. Re: Freaking out about the "securest" bag to buy for Paris


This is what I plan on taking; I already have it, it is very lightweight, and seems to meet the recommendations I have read here. Also, I will not bring much other than one credit card (in a deep zippered inner pocket) and a bit of cash for the day.

Saratoga Springs, NY
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10. Re: Freaking out about the "securest" bag to buy for Paris

I bought a pacsafe bag for $30 on amazon.com.. A friend who goes to nyc ever weekend loved it do much she got one too. It's got lots of space and zip pockets, and it's very plain.