Rolled in HCMC

#1
Just a heads up.

I feel like a total idiot because I’ve never been robbed or pickpocketed in all the traveling I’ve done, but it happened tonight.

I went for a massage at Kim Huy and after a serviceable but boring session was walking back to my room in Co Giang ward. Two skanks pulled up and one got off and grabbed me. I knew what the game was and violently threw her off me and they took off. I then realized she got my phone. I was focused on my money and weed in my front pockets and was careless.

Jokes on them though. It was a password locked shitty 6E about to die, but I had a SIM card for google maps and GoViet.

Still have my good phone, and Saigon being Saigon, there’s wifi everywhere. I know the city well enough, so no big loss.

Be warned.
 
#2
You're not an idiot. You were a victim. Clearly these are well practiced criminals who do this regularly. You didn't do anything wrong. People should be able to walk back on city streets to their hotel without being targeted and robbed like this.

Did you report this to police?

Thanks for the warning.
 
Melbourne, AUS
#3
Yeah agree with Pupkin, just rotten luck.

I guess if anything, try not have too much visible when you are walking, cash, keys, wallets, try and secure them, if you need to use your phone maybe walk into a bar, a shop (7-11) and use it. One of the biggest incidents I hear in Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia are people on bikes who just snatch and ride off. Just be careful.

But yeah, shit luck. You didn't have time to throw a round house of yank onto their hair?
 
#4
Just a heads up.

I feel like a total idiot because I’ve never been robbed or pickpocketed in all the traveling I’ve done, but it happened tonight.

I went for a massage at Kim Huy and after a serviceable but boring session was walking back to my room in Co Giang ward. Two skanks pulled up and one got off and grabbed me. I knew what the game was and violently threw her off me and they took off. I then realized she got my phone. I was focused on my money and weed in my front pockets and was careless.

Jokes on them though. It was a password locked shitty 6E about to die, but I had a SIM card for google maps and GoViet.

Still have my good phone, and Saigon being Saigon, there’s wifi everywhere. I know the city well enough, so no big loss.

Be warned.
It always good to remind people to be super careful about your belonging in Vietnam especially in a big city like Saigon. Phone and hand bag are easy target from moto robber not only you can lose your stuff but get hurt badly. Even locals are worry about that problem.

Stay safe and protect yourself and your lady who are easy target with jewelry too.
 
#5
You're not an idiot. You were a victim. Clearly these are well practiced criminals who do this regularly. You didn't do anything wrong. People should be able to walk back on city streets to their hotel without being targeted and robbed like this.

Did you report this to police?

Thanks for the warning.
Thanks.

I didn’t —I figured there wasn’t any point.
Yeah agree with Pupkin, just rotten luck.

I guess if anything, try not have too much visible when you are walking, cash, keys, wallets, try and secure them, if you need to use your phone maybe walk into a bar, a shop (7-11) and use it. One of the biggest incidents I hear in Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia are people on bikes who just snatch and ride off. Just be careful.

But yeah, shit luck. You didn't have time to throw a round house of yank onto their hair?
Nice.

It happened really, really fast. Like I said, after about a second, I realized what they were up to and threw the woman off me, but that’s all it took.
 
#8
That’s the thing—-I wasn’t on my phone and didn’t have it out. Just walking down the street, but had it in my back pocket.
I know man sorry to hear that. I'm just saying that is why I'm surprised that I have not seen this happen more often because like I said, everywhere you go people are on their phones. I hear stories about this all the time so I just hope it never happens to me.
 
#9
They seem to have pickpocket experience. Takes a lot of practice. Very common in D1. Be especially careful riding buses (if anyone does).
 
Toronto canada
#10
I keep everything in my right hand pockets, whenever I'm in a crowd, people con fronting me etc, my hand goes down to the pocket automatically. Always be aware, especially if some gal comes up and hugs u.
 
#11
Happen to me in Bui Vien. I'm aware of the motorbike phone thief. Its been warn in all travel forum. Thus, i was been extra careful on that day. When i'm done with my business there, took out my phone to book grab and looking at the meeting point with grab driver.

That's when it happen. 1 sec gone from my hands... smoothly done and i'm actually very impress with their skill. After that, i straight wave a taxi and take me back to hotel.

My phone is lock but there's still chance they are able to open in. Criminal have way to retrieve the info (although i doubt they will do it with my). But still, i change all my password and details. Next day, went to make a police report. Get scold by the police for didn't make the report on the same day. You need a local Viet to assist on the report as i fill the detail in english and the local translate to viet.

Great experience actually, such professionalism. if happen at my country, they will kick you first before snatch your stuff.
 
#12
To the Op. Good job on having a "travel phone". I have the same, I'm currently using an S8 Samsung which has a battery life of about 6 hours, with a viet (or local) sim card in it. The backup is an S6 which is even worse. The good S10 never leaves the hotel room and is strictly business/ daytime.

I carry a money clip with enough money to get through the day in a front pocket and I suspect it would be really hard to remove, even I struggle sometimes.

Worst case if it all goes to shit, Im out a dead phone a million or so and a room key.
 
#13
Phone and bag snatches are pretty common in SE Asia (HCMC, Phnom Penh, ....). Best to be alert and pre-cautious:
- Money clips instead of wallet
- If really need to carry wallet, put in front pant or cargo pocket instead of back pocket
- Leave important documents at home/hotel if equipped with safe. USA offers the option of passport card for an additional of $40(?) during each passport renew. The card is the size of credit card to be used for land travel to Canada and Mexico. I carry the card with me instead of my passport for identification in case I need to prove my citizenship
- As foreigner, we like to carry backpack. Invest in the one with multi layers with internal zippers. I usually stuff junks in the outer layer (such as wet hand towel pack, cap and my flat gimbal bag). Just in case they try to cut thru the backpack from behind, it won't get to the more important items in the inner layer
- When walking around using Google map, on the stretch of straight line, I put the phone back in my pant pocket instead of holding it all the time. Map generally vibrates the phone on each turn
 
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#15
First time heard these issues, is alot of criminals like this happen in Hanoi also?
And im curious if things like this happen mosstly in daytime or night..
 
#18
I think its a case of bad luck. Been to Vietnam 20+, 30 times have not experience such thing. But I have heard its actually quite common for robbers on motobikes to snatch your bags.

Always make sure to cross sling your bags and have it on the inside of the walkway so its harder for them to snatch it. That been said, sometimes bikes do go onto the walkway when the traffic is bad so you still need to keep an eye out for bikes coming your way.

I always have one hand on my bag when I'm out and I would stop walking and get away from the road if I need to check my phone. Never show your phone when you are right by the roadside. Even if its a cheap phone, the can still sell the phone for parts.
 
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