Q: I've been reading this site because I will be travelling with my family to Barcelona this month and what caught my eye on your site was the article about Car Crimes in Barcelona. We are planning to drive from Switzerland to Barcelona, and I was wondering if you have any advice for us since we will be travelling on a car with a plate number from Switzerland and I'm afraid that it will attract attention because of that fact. So, do you have any advice to prevent these horrible crimes? How do you prevent the stabbing of the tires while at a stoplight?
A: I understand your concern, but please try to keep everything in perspective. Millions of people visit Barcelona each year, and many drive foreign plated cars, and most of these do not have a problem with crime. To put things in perspective with our content, we have several thousand pages on our website about Barcelona and only a few are to do with different crime and only one is to do with car crime. The problem that we have is how do we write about something that occurs like crime without putting the spotlight on it and scaring people unnecessarily?
To answer your specific question how do you prevent someone slashing your tires. This is not possible. If you are unfortunate enough to have this happen to you, then at least you are aware of what is happening. You should ensure all doors are locked, including the boot before you start driving on your journey. If your tires are slashed, remain in your car, put the emergency flashing lights on to indicate that you have had an accident. If you have a roadside car repair policy, e.g. RAC or AA membership, call them in advance of your trip and ask them about their service when you are driving outside of your country. If you have a policy that does not cover driving outside your country, then consider extending this to include Spain. In this way, if you have a car breakdown, you can call them for assistance. If you feel threatened at any time, call the police. Details given here: Police Station in Barcelona. Do not open the doors to anyone that arrives unsolicited to "assist" you shortly after your tires have been slashed. Apart from that, there is nothing else you can do. The chances are you will have no problem however it is worth preparing as to what you would do in advance so that you feel more confident.
It is natural to be concerned and to take advanced steps to be aware of what you will do if the worst should happen the likelihood however is that you will be just fine.
For some more information on the steps you can take please see the following article: