Take care of thieves in Sihanoukville
Sihanoukville still a great place to visit and enjoy by sure. But as it attracts national and international tourism, it attracts also unwanted people (including certain foreigners with unfortunate behavior.) For this reason the better is prevention… Warning!!!
Certain guys in motorcycle – normally pairs – follow foreigners. When you are by your own, holding your camera or handbag, the motorbike comes slowly to you, back to you and the man behind grabs what you have at hand. It happened to Mayte, a Spaniard journalists teaching in a local school. ‘I was walking, I bought some water and began to walk back to school… suddenly I felt something grabbing my handbag where, fortunately, I had just my keys and some notebooks… The man grabbed it so strong while the motto accelerated… I shouted for my keys instinctively and my shout made that the guy who grabbed it looked at me for a while, but not enough to recognize him.‘
Mayte was lucky, but you can lost your passport, cash or credit cards if you have such unpleasant experience.
Take care, try not to walk alone in empty streets or unfamiliar places, especially during night time. Take care when you withdraw money from the ATM. See who can be staring to you. Don’t believe in references from certain locals such as bars and restaurants that tell you everything is safe at their street, even if they are foreigners. ‘Going to Otres from Ocheteal in the night by motorbike or tuk-tuk is very dangerous, but it is denied by owners of locals in Otres just to prevent a decrease in customers,’ says Maria, another Spaniard living in Sihanoukville for more than one year. ‘You can see that locals avoid to cross that dark road and it is better to go by car, because there are thieves waiting for victims inside the bushes and zero security in the area,’ she concludes.
Denying security concerns only to keep customers is not a wise option. It is better to prevent people and to work in the direction of security improvement. Business owners can join and ask the city police to increase security measures and, most important, to arrest members of thieves groups.