What’s worse than getting robbed while on holiday? How about getting robbed twice, in the space of 48 hours…
Western Australian traveller Mary Wallace was in a popular tourist spot in Rome last month when she needed to withdraw some money from an ATM.
Unable to read the ATM screen due to the sun’s glare, Mary was given some ‘help’ by a man who turned out to be ‘charging’ for his services.
"A tall man came right up behind me and started 'helping' me to do the transaction by giving me advice," she said.
"He was pleasant, non-threatening, well-dressed, helpful. But I asked him to stand back, I had it under control."
According to News Corp, Ms Wallace said the man “kept going, distracting me, having me look to my left and reaching over my right shoulder and taking my card out of the slot while I was getting the cash out of the other slot”.
“I didn't actually see him take the card and he told me that the ATM had swallowed the card, that it often happened in Rome … Initially I believed him and this time gave him the chance to go off with the card and empty my account,” she said.
Although Mary cancelled her card as soon as she realised it was missing, the thief had already helped himself to the contents of her bank account after he had seen the Aussie enter her PIN.
Fortunately, Wallace only had around $300 in her account. But that’s not where the story ends, News reported.
Just two days later, Ms Wallace was catching a bus with her friend to the popular Trastevere district for dinner. But this was a crowded bus.
"The people surrounding me were pressed tightly against me on every side," she said.
"After two stops I felt uncomfortable enough to get off the bus and immediately on exiting I put my hand down into my bag, my wallet was gone and so was the bus."
Sadly too, was her relaxing vacation.