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Tokyo, the city where you don’t need to tie your bicycle

February 17, 2015

I grew up in one of the most dangerous cities in the world, Caracas. So I laugh every time I hear someone say that you must be careful in Barcelona (Catalonia), especially in downtown. Although it is true that in Barcelona there is a real problem with theft, having experienced what it is like to take all possible precautions every single day makes my tolerance for uncertainty somewhat higher than the average Barcelonian. However, every time I go to Tokyo can not help but marvel at the realization that its population barely care about the risk of theft: it is practically null. So I was not surprised when recently The Economist named Tokyo as the safest city in the world. It is customary to leave your phone or wallet on the table in the cafeteria while going to the bathroom, going to pay or if you go out for a moment. With bicycles something similar happens. The vast majority remain on the street without being tied to anything. Some have a simple lock, but nothing that can prevent them from being taken as often as it happens in any European city where cycling is common. Even in cities that are considered safer than Barcelona, most likely that every cyclist will have his bike stolen at least once in their lifetime.


But not in Tokyo.




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