My Laptop Was Stolen While I Was Waiting For The Bus.
My Laptop was stolen in the Perugia Bus Station! How did it happen? There was no way to find the thief and no way I was going to get it back. It was an expensive mistake and cost me a day of sightseeing. Next time, I will be more careful to hang on to my laptop bag so it doesn’t become a target for thieves.
How Did My Laptop Get Stolen?
On the day we were to leave Perugia to travel by bus to Siena, Dom’s computer was stolen.
To get to Siena from Perugia, it is a 3-hour train ride but only an hour and 15-minute bus ride, so we decided to take the bus. We made our way to the busy bus terminal through the beautiful Underground Perugia, a series of gems from the Etruscan, Roman and Medieval times among passages, city walls, and ancient roads. What a way to remember the city!
We were about 25 minutes early for our departure. Dom, of course, had his large suitcase backpack, which was heavy, his small Camelbak daypack, and a laptop case (three things to carry!) that he had to hold by the laptop case by the handle. We were waiting along a busy corridor at the station looking at our cell phones and killing time. I decided to go into the cafe to buy an espresso. When I came out, Dom was frantic, asking where I put his laptop case. I had not touched it. I had my own two bags to worry about. Dom then went on to say he dropped his bags along the corridor and went inside the bus terminal office to ask a question, and when he came out, the laptop case was gone. After a frantic search and discussion with the Polizia (Police) at the terminal, it was obvious the laptop had been stolen. Nothing could be done and the polizia were not helpful and were not willing to help us file a report. On top of that, We missed our bus trying to get things straightened out.
Plan B - Take the Train to Siena
We went into the terminal to purchase a train ticket and were informed that we had missed the train to Siena and there wouldn’t be another one until the next day. Since we had an apartment booked in Siena and a wine tour planned the next day, we really needed to get to Siena by evening.
Plan C - Try out BlaBlaCar
BlaBlaCar, if you are not familiar with it, is the world’s largest service for searching for rideshares with 45 million users in 22 countries. It is different than Uber or Lift in that, unlike Uber and Lift, a BlaBla driver already has plans to drive somewhere and is offering passengers the ability to ride-share with them. The deal is that passengers split the cost of fuel with the driver when traveling between cities in Europe. You can search and find drivers going to a destination and ride with them. The cost is really low because they do not profit from the ride, the cost only covers half the cost of the fuel for the trip.
It sounded great but after I downloaded the app and registered with the site, I discovered we missed a ride by about 15 minutes. Of course, there were no other rideshares advertised for that day.
Plan D - Don't Give Up
After a long search using my Rome2Rio app and Google Map, we discovered we COULD get to Siena. We had to take a one-hour bus to an obscure neighboring town, then we had 6 minutes to make it from the bus to the train station, buy train tickets and board that train. It was our only shot.
We had about 10 minutes to purchase a bus ticket for the departing bus from Perugia. I hate it when we have to rush because it does not leave any room for error. In the end, we made it on the bus and were able to make the train – in fact, not only did we not miss the train, but actually had to wait three minutes for the train to arrive at the platform (whew!).
We finally made it to Siena, hungry and tired. The journey ended up taking about 2 hours and 40 minutes. However, the total time was about 7 hours – almost a full day lost!
How I will Avoid My Stuff Getting Stolen Again
Baggage: Obviously, there are lessons learned here. Mistakes can be costly, both in time and money. So, next time Dom will not just drop his items in a public place and walk away, even for a few moments. We also talked about consolidating his pieces during travel so there is less to keep track of and hang on to. Having shoulder straps will help when needing to be hands-free. This will help keep your things from being stolen.
What I Will Do If My Stuff Gets Stolen Again
Polizia (Police): Don’t expect them to be helpful under these small emergencies. It is important to you but not to them. And they are not often helpful when you don’t attempt to communicate in Italian. If it is important to you – be insistent, and find someone who can help translate.
Travel Insurance: Be sure to file a police report within 24 hours of the occurrence – be insistent. Our insurer needed to see a police report and since we didn’t file one (due to the disinterest of the polizia) we could not get reimbursed for our loss. This will help you pay for your replacement item in the event something does get stolen.
Read more travel stories to find out the good and the bad, and hopefully learn from our mistakes.