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Thwarting Thieves

September 07, 1997

Working in a job where I come into contact with people who have lost their passports and other valuables, I have always been amazed at how many of these items are lost or stolen at airports . . . or even on the planes themselves. The travelers usually say their valuables were in their hand luggage, which they set down for "just a minute," and which disappeared.

I often wondered, but felt it would imply criticism to ask, how it happened that tickets and money were in their hand luggage. Now I know! I am taking a package tour for the first time in years, and I discovered that most tour operators give out "handy" carry bags or oversized travel wallets bearing their company names and encourage participants to keep their travel documents in these. What dangerous advice! Please encourage your readers to keep their money and documents in interior pockets, in tightly clutched purses or, better yet, in money belts!

ALEXIS KIYAK, Los Angeles

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