One of my favorite parts about traveling to any country are the litany of "danger" stories my parents send me after I tell them where I'm going. There's constant reminders about registering with the State Department, making sure I don't discuss politics, and never, ever, ever leaving my wife and kids out of sight — or going anywhere without a relative from the overseas country chaperoning me.
For the most part I find their caution adorable and I totally understand it — I'm a dad, too. But I also believe that a lot of issues are avoidable as long as you steer clear of tourist traps and don't wear anything that'll attract attention: like cargo shorts, crocs, or fanny packs.
However, there's a reason why "tourist torture" films exist, and that's because there are plenty of stories of naive travelers getting one pulled over them by someone looking to make a quick buck. A recent AskReddit post had people share some of the scariest scams and encounters they experienced while traveling abroad. If there's one lesson to learn about all of this: don't carry too much cash with you, and always make sure the cab you're getting into is legit.
1. Chased by wild dogs.
I had a pack of wild dogs chase me from my bus stop to my hotel at 3 am in Kosovo. I also had a old woman yell at me in Russian about not making my bed right on the train and then watched over my shoulder til it was to her satisfaction when I was on my way back to Bucharest from Moldova.