Colombia Thread
I wanted to share a post here from a private FB group called "Colombia Scopolamine Victims & Alerts" that is one of the best things that I've seen in a while regarding Colombia and how to stay safe while dating, searching for a wife, or while going out in Colombia nightlife. With this being such a big thread on Colombia, with lots of great information, I thought it would really be nice to post here to try to help people stay safe and avoid really dangerous situations from dates gone wrong.

I really thought everyone should read this, because while lots of these things are common sense, some of them may not be to everyone and it's fine to admit that.

How To Avoid Getting Drugged and Robbed in Colombia

A SINGLE GUY’S TIPS FOR IMPROVING YOUR SAFETY ON DATES IN COLOMBIA

Most people have heard stories about some of the dangers in Colombia in 2019. Stories about people being drugged on a night out with a girl and waking up a day later with nothing left in their apartment. Or worse, stories about the people who have been drugged and died from the overdose they were given. These stories are very real and have been reported from multiple parts of Colombia, so this guide is meant to be something that is applicable to *all* of Colombia, and really, to all of Latin America.

These tips are from firsthand experience after spending over 4 years in Colombia and talking with countless people in real life and on forums. This guide is meant to educate you so you can be aware and stay safe. There’s no way this guide can cover every trick or scam that may be used to get you into a dangerous situation, but it is meant to be as comprehensive as possible.

This guide is meant for newbies and for the experienced travelers. The purpose of the guide is to alert you to *never* let your guard down. To stay safe while dating in Colombia, or enjoying Colombian nightlife, you need to always have situational awareness and be vigilant about your safety. Don’t drop your guard down just because you're in a nice area or you may be next. Yes, you.

First off, I’d like to clear something up about these druggings. Typically people refer to these situations where someone is drugged to then be robbed, as being “scoped.” This is in reference to the powerful drug “scopolamine” or “escopolamina” in Spanish. This is the “devil’s breath” drug/substance you will also see stories and videos about on the internet. While lots of the cases we’ve seen over the years may have been scopolamine, it’s hard to say what they really were as not everyone has had toxicology tests done afterwards. What we do know with absolute certainty, is that multiple overdoses that resulted in death this year were from being given “benzos” aka “Benzodiazepines.” These are medications that are basically tranquilizers, such as Valium or Xanax. They incapacitate you and their affects are *multiplied* with alcohol, which is how these situations ultimately ended up being murders. When we refer to most cases of “being scoped” we are likely talking broadly about being people drugged with either scopolamine or benzos. Both are dangerous and what we are trying to help you avoid here!

Now, onto the list of suspicious activities you should always be aware of while dating or going out in Colombia:

#1) If it’s too good to be true, it likely is! If things are just happening too easily, it’s likely for a reason. You’re *not* as good looking or as charming as you think. You're not Brad Pitt. Girls throwing themselves at you within 5 minutes of meeting you is suspicious and not normal.

#2) If you met on Tinder, be skeptical. Immediately. Most bad stories we’ve heard started off with “I met this girl on Tinder…” so keep reading the rest of this guide! Seriously.

#3) Don’t be too flashy on Tinder or any other dating sites. You are instantly moving yourself to the front of the line if you show your wealth off too much. You will be prioritized over other potential victims because you obviously are more likely to have more expensive things to rob.

#4) If you met a girl online, ask for her Facebook or Instagram *before* meeting her! Everyone has Instagram or Facebook. If a girl refuses to give you one, something is not right and she doesn’t want you to know her real identity. If she gives you a profile, check it to make sure it looks legitimate and has real comments from real people. Check to verify that it is personal. We cannot stress how important this is in screening out potentially dangerous girls!!!

#5) Always stay in a building with a doorman!!! This is so important to your safety. The doorman should be viewed as your friend and another line of defense into saving you from having your apartment wiped clean. Girls have been known to ask where a person lives, to see if they live in a building with a doorman or if they will have any problems bringing back someone in a drugged up state that may be unable to walk. If you don’t have a doorman, people can come and go as many times as they like once you are incapacitated! Think about that!

#6) Tell your overnight doorman to not let your visitors leave without you being present or without making sure you are OK first. Invest the time in learning how to explain this in Spanish or use Google Translate and write it up. A doorman is an important line of defense, but they’re not foolproof. You should always be sure to make him aware of this request and that he follows it, for him to be as effective as possible as a line of defense for you. Make sure you tell all your doormen in your building about this.

#7) Do not go out with a girl if she asks if she can also bring her friend along. This makes it easier for them to take advantage of you. Normal girls will not ask this. This is a big red flag and a security issue. Newbies like to think that they might then end up with both girls, but that is not the case, so please, do not fall for this one!

#8) Do not let the girl dictate the location of your date. If a girl wants to meet somewhere other than where you suggested, meaning, somewhere of her choosing, it might be because she knows she can set you up there. There have been places found to be in on these things or at least known to look the other way to them happening. Unless this is a well known and highly reputable location, this is a serious red flag and a lot of newbies overlook this red flag.

#9) If a girl wants to order the taxi, either from an app or from the street, this is a red flag. Do not get in the taxi or Uber she claims she ordered!!! It is not common for a girl to pay her own taxi, so why would she be so insistent on ordering the taxi and getting you in a specific car. You may get drugged or the car may get held up at gunpoint if they have staged the car for you to get into. This has been used this year and the person almost got killed after falling for this!

#10) Avoid taxis off the street. Use Uber, Indriver, Cabify or any taxi app where you have a record of which taxi you went in and where you went.

#11) Always, always, always, always watch your drink. Don’t let it out of your sight. If you do, go buy a new one to be safe. Keep it by you and away from your date. Don’t accept drinks from strangers either unless they pour it right in front of you and are also drinking it. Can’t overemphasize how important this one is. Most druggings happen by a girl slipping something into your drink, so it is *so* important for you to watch out for this. If a girl drops something to try to distract you or make you look away from your drink, it could be an attempt to drug you.

#12) Don’t get too wasted on dates or at nightclubs. This should be obvious but bad things can start this way when people notice you’re already drunk and vulnerable.

#13) If a girl doesn’t have an ID (known as a cedula in Colombia) or she isn’t willing to show the cedula to you, to *your* doorman or to a doorman at a bar/club, then this is a major red flag. If they have something to hide, then you should take that as a sign something is not right. You should end your date at this point. (This is another reason for having a doorman, as they do this screening for you)

#14) Don’t go out with more than you’re willing to lose. Pretty simple. If you get robbed while out, at least you minimized your losses. 

#15) If possible, leave your credit cards or bank cards at home. This is so that if you do get into a situation where you are kidnapped, they won’t hold you for multiple days so they can use your cards over and over. Yes, we have even seen this happen in 2019! Play it safe and only bring cash if possible.

#16) Always turn the location tracking feature on your cell phone on. Or share your live location with one of your best friends on WhatsApp so they can track you if necessary. If something goes wrong, you should have someone who can at least see where you are.

#17) Just because you’re in a nicer part of town doesn’t mean you’re safe. Please never think this. Seriously. Most stories we’ve heard about in Medellin, for example, happen in El Poblado, which is the single nicest neighborhood in the city. Criminals go where there is action.

#18) Lock up or hide your expensive things *before* you go out. If you have gotten all the way to this step on a date and you still haven’t detected anything, bad things can still happen. A girl still might grab something expensive she sees laying around if she tries to let herself out. (But she won’t get far if you had that talk with your doorman!)

#19) If red flags have appeared while you’re out, or you start to feel nauseous or sick in any way, leave by yourself *immediately* and get into the first taxi possible. Do not let anyone come with you or tell you which tax to get into.

#20) Try to take a picture with the girl, or at least of the girl, once you are out on your date and send it off to a friend. If the girl has bad intentions, she will be put off a formal request to take a picture of her. If anything bad happens, your friend will at least have a picture of the girl you went out with.

#21) Screenshot Tinder profiles and save their "Share" URL before your date. A common theme from people who have been drugged and robbed is that the girls always unmatch them on Tinder. Duh. You can have more evidence for the police if you have both screenshot the girls profile pictures and also used the "Share" option within Tinder, which create a link back to the girls profile. With this link, it's possible to track down the profile used. This is one of the few ways you might be able to track down the person if things go wrong. (Yes, Tinder does have a department that works with law enforcement for bad situations like these)

#22) Go on coffee dates. Way safer than dates at night. Consider it.

Please, please, please take the time to read this. Study this guide. Increase your street smarts and your willpower or you will get taken for the chump that you are. We are seriously trying to help you fall victim and have something bad happen to you. We love Colombia, but these things are real and life is cheap here.


(Maybe I should make it it's own data sheet too? Thoughts?)

Stay safe, fellas.  Cool
Reply
(07-29-2019, 11:24 PM)natas Wrote: I wanted to share a post here from a private FB group called "Colombia Scopolamine Victims & Alerts" that is one of the best things that I've seen in a while regarding Colombia and how to stay safe while dating, searching for a wife, or while going out in Colombia nightlife. With this being such a big thread on Colombia, with lots of great information, I thought it would really be nice to post here to try to help people stay safe and avoid really dangerous situations from dates gone wrong.

I really thought everyone should read this, because while lots of these things are common sense, some of them may not be to everyone and it's fine to admit that.

How To Avoid Getting Drugged and Robbed in Colombia

A SINGLE GUY’S TIPS FOR IMPROVING YOUR SAFETY ON DATES IN COLOMBIA

Most people have heard stories about some of the dangers in Colombia in 2019. Stories about people being drugged on a night out with a girl and waking up a day later with nothing left in their apartment. Or worse, stories about the people who have been drugged and died from the overdose they were given. These stories are very real and have been reported from multiple parts of Colombia, so this guide is meant to be something that is applicable to *all* of Colombia, and really, to all of Latin America.

These tips are from firsthand experience after spending over 4 years in Colombia and talking with countless people in real life and on forums. This guide is meant to educate you so you can be aware and stay safe. There’s no way this guide can cover every trick or scam that may be used to get you into a dangerous situation, but it is meant to be as comprehensive as possible.

This guide is meant for newbies and for the experienced travelers. The purpose of the guide is to alert you to *never* let your guard down. To stay safe while dating in Colombia, or enjoying Colombian nightlife, you need to always have situational awareness and be vigilant about your safety. Don’t drop your guard down just because you're in a nice area or you may be next. Yes, you.

First off, I’d like to clear something up about these druggings. Typically people refer to these situations where someone is drugged to then be robbed, as being “scoped.” This is in reference to the powerful drug “scopolamine” or “escopolamina” in Spanish. This is the “devil’s breath” drug/substance you will also see stories and videos about on the internet. While lots of the cases we’ve seen over the years may have been scopolamine, it’s hard to say what they really were as not everyone has had toxicology tests done afterwards. What we do know with absolute certainty, is that multiple overdoses that resulted in death this year were from being given “benzos” aka “Benzodiazepines.” These are medications that are basically tranquilizers, such as Valium or Xanax. They incapacitate you and their affects are *multiplied* with alcohol, which is how these situations ultimately ended up being murders. When we refer to most cases of “being scoped” we are likely talking broadly about being people drugged with either scopolamine or benzos. Both are dangerous and what we are trying to help you avoid here!

Now, onto the list of suspicious activities you should always be aware of while dating or going out in Colombia:

#1) If it’s too good to be true, it likely is! If things are just happening too easily, it’s likely for a reason. You’re *not* as good looking or as charming as you think. You're not Brad Pitt. Girls throwing themselves at you within 5 minutes of meeting you is suspicious and not normal.

#2) If you met on Tinder, be skeptical. Immediately. Most bad stories we’ve heard started off with “I met this girl on Tinder…” so keep reading the rest of this guide! Seriously.

#3) Don’t be too flashy on Tinder or any other dating sites. You are instantly moving yourself to the front of the line if you show your wealth off too much. You will be prioritized over other potential victims because you obviously are more likely to have more expensive things to rob.

#4) If you met a girl online, ask for her Facebook or Instagram *before* meeting her! Everyone has Instagram or Facebook. If a girl refuses to give you one, something is not right and she doesn’t want you to know her real identity. If she gives you a profile, check it to make sure it looks legitimate and has real comments from real people. Check to verify that it is personal. We cannot stress how important this is in screening out potentially dangerous girls!!!

#5) Always stay in a building with a doorman!!! This is so important to your safety. The doorman should be viewed as your friend and another line of defense into saving you from having your apartment wiped clean. Girls have been known to ask where a person lives, to see if they live in a building with a doorman or if they will have any problems bringing back someone in a drugged up state that may be unable to walk. If you don’t have a doorman, people can come and go as many times as they like once you are incapacitated! Think about that!

#6) Tell your overnight doorman to not let your visitors leave without you being present or without making sure you are OK first. Invest the time in learning how to explain this in Spanish or use Google Translate and write it up. A doorman is an important line of defense, but they’re not foolproof. You should always be sure to make him aware of this request and that he follows it, for him to be as effective as possible as a line of defense for you. Make sure you tell all your doormen in your building about this.

#7) Do not go out with a girl if she asks if she can also bring her friend along. This makes it easier for them to take advantage of you. Normal girls will not ask this. This is a big red flag and a security issue. Newbies like to think that they might then end up with both girls, but that is not the case, so please, do not fall for this one!

#8) Do not let the girl dictate the location of your date. If a girl wants to meet somewhere other than where you suggested, meaning, somewhere of her choosing, it might be because she knows she can set you up there. There have been places found to be in on these things or at least known to look the other way to them happening. Unless this is a well known and highly reputable location, this is a serious red flag and a lot of newbies overlook this red flag.

#9) If a girl wants to order the taxi, either from an app or from the street, this is a red flag. Do not get in the taxi or Uber she claims she ordered!!! It is not common for a girl to pay her own taxi, so why would she be so insistent on ordering the taxi and getting you in a specific car. You may get drugged or the car may get held up at gunpoint if they have staged the car for you to get into. This has been used this year and the person almost got killed after falling for this!

#10) Avoid taxis off the street. Use Uber, Indriver, Cabify or any taxi app where you have a record of which taxi you went in and where you went.

#11) Always, always, always, always watch your drink. Don’t let it out of your sight. If you do, go buy a new one to be safe. Keep it by you and away from your date. Don’t accept drinks from strangers either unless they pour it right in front of you and are also drinking it. Can’t overemphasize how important this one is. Most druggings happen by a girl slipping something into your drink, so it is *so* important for you to watch out for this. If a girl drops something to try to distract you or make you look away from your drink, it could be an attempt to drug you.

#12) Don’t get too wasted on dates or at nightclubs. This should be obvious but bad things can start this way when people notice you’re already drunk and vulnerable.

#13) If a girl doesn’t have an ID (known as a cedula in Colombia) or she isn’t willing to show the cedula to you, to *your* doorman or to a doorman at a bar/club, then this is a major red flag. If they have something to hide, then you should take that as a sign something is not right. You should end your date at this point. (This is another reason for having a doorman, as they do this screening for you)

#14) Don’t go out with more than you’re willing to lose. Pretty simple. If you get robbed while out, at least you minimized your losses. 

#15) If possible, leave your credit cards or bank cards at home. This is so that if you do get into a situation where you are kidnapped, they won’t hold you for multiple days so they can use your cards over and over. Yes, we have even seen this happen in 2019! Play it safe and only bring cash if possible.

#16) Always turn the location tracking feature on your cell phone on. Or share your live location with one of your best friends on WhatsApp so they can track you if necessary. If something goes wrong, you should have someone who can at least see where you are.

#17) Just because you’re in a nicer part of town doesn’t mean you’re safe. Please never think this. Seriously. Most stories we’ve heard about in Medellin, for example, happen in El Poblado, which is the single nicest neighborhood in the city. Criminals go where there is action.

#18) Lock up or hide your expensive things *before* you go out. If you have gotten all the way to this step on a date and you still haven’t detected anything, bad things can still happen. A girl still might grab something expensive she sees laying around if she tries to let herself out. (But she won’t get far if you had that talk with your doorman!)

#19) If red flags have appeared while you’re out, or you start to feel nauseous or sick in any way, leave by yourself *immediately* and get into the first taxi possible. Do not let anyone come with you or tell you which tax to get into.

#20) Try to take a picture with the girl, or at least of the girl, once you are out on your date and send it off to a friend. If the girl has bad intentions, she will be put off a formal request to take a picture of her. If anything bad happens, your friend will at least have a picture of the girl you went out with.

#21) Screenshot Tinder profiles and save their "Share" URL before your date. A common theme from people who have been drugged and robbed is that the girls always unmatch them on Tinder. Duh. You can have more evidence for the police if you have both screenshot the girls profile pictures and also used the "Share" option within Tinder, which create a link back to the girls profile. With this link, it's possible to track down the profile used. This is one of the few ways you might be able to track down the person if things go wrong. (Yes, Tinder does have a department that works with law enforcement for bad situations like these)

#22) Go on coffee dates. Way safer than dates at night. Consider it.

Please, please, please take the time to read this. Study this guide. Increase your street smarts and your willpower or you will get taken for the chump that you are. We are seriously trying to help you fall victim and have something bad happen to you. We love Colombia, but these things are real and life is cheap here.


(Maybe I should make it it's own data sheet too? Thoughts?)

Stay safe, fellas.  Cool

Nice Post.I've seen a lot written where guys try to give the opposite advice as far as 1 and 3.A lot of guys think that being a foreigner and showing off your status or supposed status will help get foreign women.
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Great post, basically sums it up. It would be good to see some other groups, media outlets pick this up and spread that information. For me, I'd say the main tactic I use now is #4, trying to get some verification through FB or IG. I also like to go into nightlife and talk to random girls though, so in that case, I sort of rely on my doorman and the cedula policy. Besides this indeed never bring cards with you, there's really no reason to do so in Colombia or other SA countries. The hardest of all the rules is to not get too wasted!
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Good post. Most of it is solid advice for anywhere with a medium to high crime rate too, not just Colombia.
Reply
Anyone have info on Venezuela? I'm trying to get my Mexican passport so I can visit Caracas, have some contacts there that can help me out. Apparently it's not bad, the Venezuelans are basically bitching because their quality of life went downhill with their purchasing power. If you have money, shit is good from what it appears.
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No concrete info but I agree with you that the media has been exaggerating the "crisis" for political reasons. Provided you have contacts and are willing to tolerate a heightened danger level you should be OK. Some Nordish guy on RVF had a thread about Caracas. Check our Merida if you get the chance.
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I have some contacts in Venezuela as well. Depends on what you think is not bad. For the general population, it is definitely very bad. If you can stay in the best areas, it can be manageable but expect power outages, difficult access to some basic stuff like medicine etc. People still go out as well but only the top class. Walking outside at night is a no go of course and if you are a very visible foreigner, you have to be on your toes all the time.

Some places which might be better are Isla Margarita and perhaps Merida (for safety).
Reply
(07-30-2019, 12:57 PM)Cattle Rustler Wrote: Anyone have info on Venezuela? I'm trying to get my Mexican passport so I can visit Caracas, have some contacts there that can help me out. Apparently it's not bad, the Venezuelans are basically bitching because their quality of life went downhill with their purchasing power. If you have money, shit is good from what it appears.

I know quite a bit about Venezuela now after living in Miami, Colombia, following the situation there for 5+ years now and messing with a few Venezuelan girls. Maybe the situation is exaggerated if your expectations are that it's a warzone, but it is indeed pretty damn bad there for locals. Caracas is for sure not a safe place, but it is also much better off than the rest of the country, because Maduro has to keep people in Caracas relatively happy. If he lets it go to shit like Merida or Isla Margarita then he will have way more problems. Also, I emphasized for locals because if you go there with dollars or euros or whatever, you are basically a king. But people who live there don't earn dollars, so they're pretty fucked. And it's a little weird being a king in a place where you have to watch over your shoulder everywhere you go or can't even go out after dark (very few people go out after dark so there's also little incentive to going out and trying to find nightlife there now). 

(I would argue that their bitching is very valid, as their quality of life has for sure drastically gone down in more ways than just their purchasing power, as ~90% of the entire country lives in poverty there now)

This normal guy from New Zealand is there now and has some pretty good unbiased videos about his experiences: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCXulruM...0jA/videos
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Interesting thoughts Natas. I'd say truly living like a king would involve getting the black market rate though, and there is some danger associated with making those exchanges. You'd probably need a guide. That informs my general hesitation to visit, I don't like having to rely on guides.
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(07-30-2019, 04:08 PM)churros Wrote: Interesting thoughts Natas. I'd say truly living like a king would involve getting the black market rate though, and there is some danger associated with making those exchanges. You'd probably need a guide. That informs my general hesitation to visit, I don't like having to rely on guides.

Everything there is the black market rate. If you paid with a US credit card you'd be paying at the official rate the VZ gov sets and it'd be an insane amount of money for whatever it is you're buying. Like 20x what it should cost, if not more, no exaggeration. Doing a little Googleing showed me someone last winter doing a $20 lunch transaction with a US card and it ended up costing $400 something USD at the converted rate. So, a thing of eggs would be like $150 USD. Of course, everything is so messed up that they are starting to accept cash money US dollars at every store now as well. Exchanging like $50 USD at a change house is dangerous too because it ends up being such a large amount of physical currency that you'd have to carry around. $50 would fill up a large duffel bag or a hockey bag. You obviously can't (or don't want to) carry that around in Venezuela. Most transactions end up having to be done on ATM/debit cards linked to Venezuelan bank accounts and you have to do 10+ transactions to pay for the bill and someone to set you up with their card in the first place because foreigners can't get them officially. Can't just use an ATM either because the max you can withdraw per day is like 30 cents.

Basically, you start to see how living like a king there is a pain in the ass with that above example. People literally have to spend their whole days trying to get money or trying to get food there because their whole system is so retarded. (It was like this way before US sanctions)

Oh and that Norwegian guy from RVF who went to Venezuela and was posting about it....he never logged in again. I had sent him multiple PMs and was talking to him but then he just disappeared. We were joking that maybe he got killed there....but it might not even be a joke.
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(06-12-2019, 03:34 AM)TravelHardcore Wrote:
(06-09-2019, 12:48 PM)Scotian Wrote: I wouldn’t say that Bogota is so much more awesome than Medellin, there’s a reason why so many more foreigners go to the latter. I wouldn’t cancel that ticket.

I wanna give Bogota another shot and stay a month there. I haven't been in ages, or just a few days, I feel the girls are a bit more classy and sophisticated there. Less creida than Medellin chicks

Facts! I find the Rolas ok but no more fun than Costenas or Calenas. Paisas are creidas but they're so pretty it's worth it
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(07-31-2019, 10:06 PM)Christoff Wrote:
(06-12-2019, 03:34 AM)TravelHardcore Wrote:
(06-09-2019, 12:48 PM)Scotian Wrote: I wouldn’t say that Bogota is so much more awesome than Medellin, there’s a reason why so many more foreigners go to the latter. I wouldn’t cancel that ticket.

I wanna give Bogota another shot and stay a month there. I haven't been in ages, or just a few days, I feel the girls are a bit more classy and sophisticated there. Less creida than Medellin chicks

Facts! I find the Rolas ok but no more fun than Costenas or Calenas. Paisas are creidas but they're so pretty it's worth it
I prefer Bogota myself. There's more to do and although not as quiet as hot as Medellin the women are more sophisticated. It suites my style a lot better. I have a feeling if I stayed for a while I would access the top tier in Bogota. I doubt that in Medellin.
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