Concertgoers had $13,564 in loot stolen at Governors Ball last week. Here’s how to protect your stuff.
Don’t let your summer jams get you scammed.
It’s bad enough that the average musical festival pass runs $100 a day. But many concertgoers find themselves hit in the wallet again, since thieves find them ripe for the pick-pocketing. A U.K. study found more than $340,000 was stolen from festival revelers in 2015. The New York Police Department said Governors Ball guests reported $13,564 in stolen property during the Randalls Island fest just last week; mostly cell phones and camera equipment.
Leaving valuables at home is the best way to protect yourself. But since you’re probably going to need to bring some currency and a phone, here’s five ways to protect your stuff.
1. WORK SMART WRISTBANDS. Many fests feature smart wristbands, which link to your credit or debit card so that you don’t have to carry cash or plastic. Scan the band at the merch tables or food stands to pay. Emer Smith, 35, from Maine, enjoyed this at the Boston Common festival. “That was super convenient, and reduced the risk of theft,” she said.
2. KEEP THINGS IN FRONT PANTS/SHORT POCKETS. It’s going to be much harder for someone to slip a hand in your front pocket than to grope a back or side pocket. And don’t keep everything in the same place – separate your credit card, ID, cash and phone into separate pockets so that if one gets hit, you haven’t lost everything.
3. GET A ‘FIND MY PHONE’ APP. Ripped-off Coachella guests tracked down the thief who stole 100 iPhones in April by using the “Find My iPhone” app. They then pointed him out to police officers. It’s free on the App store, and Android users can also download the free Find My Phone app – just in case.
4. BE SMART WITH BAGS. Choose bags that zip up, and have inner pockets, which are harder to loot than open totes or purses. Wear them in front of you. “And always hold your bag – don’t leave it on your blanket, even if you’re just standing on the blanket dancing,” said Kathleen Busch, 30 from Queens. And there’s a growing market of anti-theft bags, such as the $70 High Spirit, which only unzips in the part that’s flush against your back, or the $106 Bobby with secret pockets.
5. EMBRACE THE FANNY PACK. After Dylan McGill, 27, from the Bronx had her iPhone 5 and $40 bucks stolen from her bag at a concert, she began carrying her valuables in a fanny pack. “It’s small, and I keep around my waist so I know that it’s there and on my body,” she said. “And it gives me liberty to dance to my heart’s content.”
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