This is intended as much for residents as it is for holidaymakers although the latter do tend to be more vulnerable.
There are so many reports of petty street crimes, from incidents at cashpoint machines to pickpocketing at bus stations, to cars being targeted as they drive away from the airport Ö the list goes on. And unfortunately the message is starting to get around and people are becoming nervous. I have even had one person ask if it was really still safe to come to Tenerife, and whether we shouldnít start officially warning people to stay away.
Tenerife is like many other places in Europe in the respect that crime has increased as the economic situation has worsened, and we are not immune, either, from eastern European gangs whose main purpose is to thieve, as Iíve posted previously. I have also posted, however, how the police regularly round up these vermin, and frankly, if I were to be arrested and depend on my rights for fluffy treatment in any country, Spain would not be top of my list!
Of course it is still safe to come here, and no, we shouldnít be warning people to stay away. We should, however, be warning people to be careful. The problem is that for so long people have come here as to an idyllic holiday paradise and left their brains at home. That used to be possible. Now it isnít. Donít, for example, stop your car unless ordered to by the police. If you do stop it, donít both get out and leave the doors open for the convenience of any nearby thieves. Donít flash bundles of Euros around at cashpoints admiring the pretty pictures on those strange Euro notes. Donít wear flash jewellery and wander around, perhaps a bit the worse for wear, in the early hours. Just carry the amount of spending money youíre going to need at any given time, and leave the credit cards in the safe. Ladies make sure your handbag is in your full view at all times and everyone, don't place your "iPhone" on the corner of the table/bar in a cafe/bar/restaurant where it can easily be snatched by an opportunist.
Itís not rocket science, is it? This isnít outrageous advice, itís just common sense. Plenty of people have come here over the years and left without experiencing crime of any sort. Plenty still do. The whole economy and political structure of Europe is changing, however, and Iím afraid that we now need to wear our sensible heads at all times, rather than leaving them at home or in the airport.source: Janet Anscombe