This page will give you practical guidelines on what to do if the worse happens and you are a victim of crime in Barcelona. If you are robbed during your stay in Barcelona, the first thing to remember is that it is not your fault. It is not due to something that you did or did not do. It has happened to the best of us. I have lived in Barcelona for over one year and still have not figured out how to avoid being pickpocketed or robbed. The city is currently experiencing difficulty with this issue, and we are all looking forward to the day when the situation has improved.
With this in mind see our Barcelona tourist safety page for advice on steps that you can take to reduce the risk of being targeted during your stay in Barcelona. However, do not allow horror stories or personal concern to tarnish your trip to this wonderful city. A large number of tourists visit Barcelona and come back with everything still intact, including some life long happy memories.
If you discover that you have been robbed, it is necessary to take action to deal with the situation immediately. Channel your energies into dealing with the practicalities of the issue. Trying to chase, find or confront the criminals is futile. Once you have got everything in order, you can spend all of the time that you like imagining that your dartboard is the robber's head!
2. What has been stolen?
Your Bank Cards
Before doing anything else it is necessary to report your cards are stolen and cancel your cards .
- If you go to the main police stations (see contact details below under Getting a Police Report) they will provide you with the necessary telephone number to call, plus a telephone to make the call free of charge to your credit card agency.
- On calling your bank, ensure that they know in no uncertain terms that you want your cards to be actually cancelled. Ask for the name of the person that you have spoken to or a code for the call and make a note of it. We have had reports from site visitors were the cards were reported stolen but had not cancelled them. They were then surprised to find bills continuing to come through from the stolen cards
- Ask for confirmation that your card has not been used since the time that you discovered that it was stolen.
- It is worth reporting this to the police for two reasons - they may have found your camera or, if not if your camera is insured you will want to make an insurance claim and will need a police report to do this. See below on how to get a police report.
- Before you go to the police station, collect as much information as possible about your camera. Most important is the serial number. Information on the make of the camera is also useful or distinguishing features. The police will not be interested in what photographs were on the camera - most criminals will delete photographs from the camera immediately after taking it.
- If your passport has been stolen, it will be at the discretion of your airline as to whether they will require that you have a temporary passport in order to fly.
- You should call your particular airline in order to find out what they will allow you to do.
- If you are flying to the country of the nationality of your passport and you are not flying with a low-cost airline (such as Ryanair or EasyJet) there is a chance that you will only need a police report to fly. However, you should check with your airline before going to the airport.
- If you are informed that you need a temporary passport, see below for how to get a temporary passport.
- You will require a police report or Denuncia as it is called in Spain. Please see below for how to get a police report in Barcelona.
There is a police station at the airport, in Terminal 1 (T1). This station is a lot less busy than the police stations in Barcelona city centre. If you are flying on the same day that you have had your passport stolen and will not need to visit your embassy, it is worth heading straight to the police station at the airport.
3. Where do you need to go next?
Getting a Police Report
- The Spanish for Police Report is "denuncia".
- It is worth remembering that Spanish police are not necessarily multilingual. The police station on Nou de la Rambla (see below for address) can provide an English speaker with whom to make a report.
- Getting a report can take a number of hours, depending on how busy the station is. Be prepared to wait at the station. Also, gather as much information as possible on what has been stolen and its estimated value before you get there.
- There are various different types of police in Barcelona - Guardia Civil, Guardia Militar and Mossos d'Esquadra. It is necessary to speak to the Mossos d'Esquadra to make a police report. Their main station is below.
Main Police Station:
Comisaria de Policia de Barcelona (Ciutat Vella)
Carrer Nou de la Rambla, 76-80
Metro: Liceu (Green Line, L3)
Metro Police Station
The police station for the metro is located within the Plaça de Catalunya metro station itself.
Metro Police Station
Metro: Plaça de Catalunya (Red Line, L1) and (Green Line, L3)
(go inside any of the Metro entrances in Plaça de Catalunya and you will be directed to the police station)
Getting a Temporary Passport
- If you require a temporary passport in order to fly, you will need to contact your Embassy (i.e. the nationality on your passport)
- Embassies vary in regards to how they deal with temporary passports. However, all will require a police report before they will provide the passport.
- Some Embassies charge for temporary passports, others do not.
Temporary passport: €135.00
- Before you arrive at the Embassy it is worth organising some passport photographs, as these will definitely be required.
All in all, being robbed whilst on holiday is a traumatic experience. I hope that we have been able to offer you some helpful information to alleviate some of the stress.