Global pickpocketing hotspots revealed

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The Independent Travel

Travelers rambling along Las Ramblas in Barcelona would be wise to watch their belongings, if new research is anything to go by.

The popular Spanish city topped the list of pickpocketing hotspots, compiled by travel review site TripAdvisor, for the second year running, with Italian capital Rome also holding onto second place.

Paris took third place and Madrid fourth on the "Global Pickpocket Top Ten," which TripAdvisor compiled by looking at the number of times travelers used the term "pickpocket" (and translations of) in their TripAdvisor reviews over the last 12 months.

The top ten was dominated by European destinations, with Spanish cities or resorts accounting for four entries.

The Costa Brava and Tenerife in Spain are new entries to the list, as are Lisbon in Portugal and London in the United Kingdom.

Paris and Athens moved up the list, while Prague fell by three places, from third place to sixth.

The good news, perhaps, is that visitors to Florence in Italy, Buenos Aires in Argentina, Amsterdam in the Netherlands and Hanoi in Vietnam can feel a little more at ease - all four cities dropped out of the top ten after appearing last year.

Global Pickpocket Top Ten (2009 place in brackets)
Compiled by TripAdvisor

1.     Barcelona, Spain (1)
2.     Rome, Italy (2)
3.     Paris, France (5)
4.     Madrid, Spain (4)
5.     Athens, Greece (9)
6.     Prague, Czech Republic (3)
7.     Costa Brava (Alicante Province), Spain
8.     Lisbon, Portugal
9.     Tenerife, Spain
10.  London, England

(embargoed until September 15, midnight BST)