Travel safety gear: Prevent theft with a Baliloca purse

I’ve been pretty lucky when it comes to travelling. Up until Hawaii, that is.

Remember how I wrote about how NOT to piss off Pele the Fire Goddess? Well I must have pissed off her and her entire family, because after that, it all went to hell. I’ll tell you more about it later, but among my stolen items were two credit cards. Goddammit.

The worst thing about having my items stolen was the creepy sense of violation. I’m not kidding. The whole stupidly long process of replacing my American Expresses was nothing compared to how grossed out I felt after realizing someone had reached into my purse and yoinked out my cards without me having noticed in the slightest. Barf. Get your dirty grubby fingers off me, hobo.

So I thought maybe it was a good time to start trying extra safety measures. I was asked to review a Baliloca purse, a unique leather design cross-strapped purse that hugs your body and makes it hard for people to steal your shit.

I didn’t LOVE the design when I first saw it on the website. It reminded me of a gun holster or something. I thought maybe only the pretty models in the videos would be able to pull off such a thing. But when I received my own, it actually didn’t look too shabby at all.

It took me a few tries to figure out how to wear it. I struggled into those straps like a fly caught in a spider’s web. But the purse really does fit snugly against my body. And my absolute favourite thing about it? I can go entirely HANDS FREE!


My best attempt at modelling. Without makeup.

Which means I can throw my hands up in the air on a dance floor. That’s all I really need from this purse.

And to like, protect my valuables and stuff.

This design makes it incredibly hard for thieves to reach into your purse pockets. It also gives you more flexibility when it comes to moving around, and keeping your hands free. The look has grown on me a lot — even more now that I’m going to El Salvador and Guatemala in a few weeks where pick-pocketing and theft is much more of an issue than other countries I’ve visited.

What I didn’t love: I wish the adjustable cross-strap was made from the same material as the rest of the purse, for aesthetic reasons. But I do love the fact it’s adjustable.

The pockets are also very tiny, so if you’re the kind of person who keeps their entire bedroom in their purse, it might not work too well for you.

Baliloca sport

I really love this sports version. How perfect for running!
It’s also the perfect alternative to the suddenly-popular-again fanny-pack that everyone seems to be wearing these days. I REFUSE to wear a fanny-pack. The Baliloca purse works just fine for me.

How do you protect against theft on the road?

  • March 23 2015

    That sucks that you had your stuff stolen. I haven’t had such an experience with pickpocketers yet but I feel like I should be prepared. Maybe I’ll even try the Baliloca purse.

    • March 24 2015

      Apparently I’m wearing my purse wrong in this photo, Lol. OOPS.

  • March 24 2015

    Serendipity strikes again! I have been looking and looking at all the different versions of these kinds of things and I like the look of this one the best – thanks for reviewing.

    “Yoinked” – seriously rolling on floor laughing. Making note to self to steal this word and use it shamelessly at every opportunity.

    • March 30 2015

      Hahahaha! I think you’d like this purse. ALSO I’m wearing it wrong in this photo. It’s supposed to be on my left side, which as it turns out, is MUCH more comfortable. Lol.

  • March 24 2015

    I keep all my important stuff in the hotel safe. (Don’t want to lose that passport). Out on the town with petty cash, In Case of Emergency info written on a card, and some form of ID. All in a pocket somewhere on my person. (hooray scottevest). You can also use an app on your phone (I use Stocard) that records your other membership cards, eg; airmiles, aeroplan, goodlife, etc. Saves the hassle of losing/forgetting them.

    • March 30 2015

      One of my buddies actually keeps a FAKE wallet and phone on him all the time! Brilliant. Got some old credit cards? Just shove ’em in there

  • March 24 2015

    WHY WON’T THIS GO VERTICAL?!? bahahahahahaha

  • March 24 2015

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  • March 24 2015
    Joe Baur

    Sorry to hear about the grubby hands in your purse, but glad to hear you’re checking out El Salvador! Absolutely loved that country. Biggest surprise in my travel life. Not sure where you’re heading, but we never felt unsafe once. I went in with a lot of caution because of what everyone (who hasn’t been to El Salvador, mind you) says about the country. Eventually locals were laughing at us after I kept asking if it’s okay to walk around with my camera out and the like.

    Also felt perfectly safe in Guatemala, even in Chichicastenango where you’re strongly encouraged to walk around with your backpack on your stomach (we opted against it, though).


    • March 30 2015

      Joe, I was SO PUMPED to read this message that I literally copied and pasted it to all the people who have been telling me that I’m going to die/get mugged/get kidnapped in El Salvador. Lol. THANK YOU! Hahaha

      • March 30 2015

        Candice — Glad to hear it! In fact, here’s a travelogue I shot during our week in El Salvador to give you an idea (albeit a tad flowerly) of what to expect:

        Typically I don’t share videos before I publish some sort fo editorial content… But El Salvador was so special, I’ve found myself just sending it anyone and everyone telling me they’re surprised I didn’t die. I look forward to reading about your experience. Enjoy!

        • March 31 2015

          GAHHH this makes me so excited!! THANk you! hahaha and that music! Awesome

          • March 31 2015

            Great! Let me know if you have any questions. Looking forward to your own take!

  • April 13 2015
    Rebekah Crabtree

    I had my wallet stolen and it pissed me off a lot considering they only got one card and about $50. It does feel really violating. THat purse is not bad. I can’t deal with some of the weird things people carry travelling

    • April 13 2015

      UGH, another pet peeve…I mean who even carries cash with them nowadays?! Haha. I entertained the idea of buying a fannypack for awhile there…

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