Do you wear your ABD backpack on your trip?

lostatdisney

Mouseketeer
Joined
Mar 4, 2004
This is a silly question, but we're going on a Rome Short Escape in a few weeks, and we received the box with a booklet and an ABD backpack. Do people use these on the trip? It's not super heavy duty, but I'm sure it could be handy. Just curious. TIA!
 

BluesTraveler

Mouseketeer
Joined
Jul 23, 2015
It's been a while since a backpack was in the box. When we did Alaska in 2016 they gave real backpacks (more substantial than this year's) and everyone on our trip used them - they were perfect for day packs. We go to Greece this summer and we're planning to take the packs that were in this year's box, as they seem like they'll be good for the water-activity days. If you think it would work for the activities on your itinerary, take it!
 

Woodview

DIS Veteran
Joined
Dec 29, 2013
Also good for holding water bottles ..... (. Re fillable every day )

Tip On your way to your Departure airport ...... you have your full water bottle with you ....

Before you go through Security empty the bottle AND INSTEAD of Throwing it away.....

place empty bottle in your backpack & go through security & Re Fill at departure gate .

NO NEED to buy more water bottles just use the ones you have
 
  • BadPinkTink

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 13, 2015
    as a European who has been to Rome, I would advise AGAINST using the backpack, Sure it probably looks cute and could be useful, but wearing it will INSTANTLY mark you as a target for petty thieves and pick pockets.

    I live in Dublin, Ireland and it always amazes me how little tour groups are aware of their personal safety.

    Europe may not have high gun crime and I think American tourists fall into the trap of thinking low gun crime= no crime.

    In most major European cities and especially in the Italian cities, pretty crime and pick pocket theft is run by organised crime gangs. They are professionals and look for soft targets, tourists who have large amounts of cash or who have expensive phones, cameras and jewellery. By wearing the ABD backpack you basically have a sign above your head, hey Im a wealthy American, easy target, big payout
     

    leannak

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Aug 28, 2011
    You would think ABD knows that the backpacks advertise their guests as tourists/targets and find something else to gift customers. I’m sure they don’t want us to be pick-pocketed.
     

    OKW Lover

    Retired and living 2 miles from The Castle.
    DIS Lifetime Sponsor
    Joined
    Apr 29, 2004
    RE: being identified as a tourist when on an ABD trip. Keep in mind that you are part of a group of ~30 people following around a guide holding a paddle that says Adventures by Disney. I really don't think wearing a backpack is going to make you any more obvious.
     
  • lostatdisney

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Mar 4, 2004
    This is terrific advice! Thank you! I was thinking of wearing a simple gold wedding band instead of my diamond wedding ring, and this helps me make that decision.
    RE: being identified as a tourist when on an ABD trip. Keep in mind that you are part of a group of ~30 people following around a guide holding a paddle that says Adventures by Disney. I really don't think wearing a backpack is going to make you any more obvious.
    Haha true. But I will most likely bring another backpack for the part of the trip when I'm off on my own. We're extending our vacation and going on to Florence and then to Switzerland.
     

    BadPinkTink

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Mar 13, 2015
    @lostatdisney the problem with the ABD backpacks is not when you are all together in a big group walking down a street but more when you are not with the group. For example, you are in the group walking to The Trevi Fountain. But at the fountain area you separate, go into a shop, sit a cafe table, or even just wander around separate from the main group for a few minutes. THATS when the thieves strike, they have watched you in the big group, and then the backpack identifies you when you separate from the big group. If you didnt have the ABD backpack, you would just blend in as another tourist.
     

    lostatdisney

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Mar 4, 2004
    @lostatdisney the problem with the ABD backpacks is not when you are all together in a big group walking down a street but more when you are not with the group. For example, you are in the group walking to The Trevi Fountain. But at the fountain area you separate, go into a shop, sit a cafe table, or even just wander around separate from the main group for a few minutes. THATS when the thieves strike, they have watched you in the big group, and then the backpack identifies you when you separate from the big group. If you didnt have the ABD backpack, you would just blend in as another tourist.
    That makes sense! Thanks for the feedback.
     
  • DCPhotoGal

    Photographer and Mom to 2 Princesses
    Joined
    Mar 4, 2011
    We did the Arizona/Utah trip this spring break and brought the backpacks that came in this year's package. They were great for the rafting. In general we give them to the kids to use as carry-ons (when they gave the canvas ones) or use them for the more sporty activities. If I were touring Europe I would use a leather backpack or something a little more blendy. I used to travel in Europe a lot in my pre-kids days both as a student and then again in my job and I tried to blend as much as possible and it worked well. I have never had problems with theft and I even did crazy things like sleeping overnight in the Prague train station. I think if you're traveling with a group in Europe you're going to look like a tourist regardless of what you do. I'd recommend being smart and keeping your money inside your clothes in a pouch instead of in your bag or pocket.
     

    lostatdisney

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Mar 4, 2004
    We did the Arizona/Utah trip this spring break and brought the backpacks that came in this year's package. They were great for the rafting. In general we give them to the kids to use as carry-ons (when they gave the canvas ones) or use them for the more sporty activities. If I were touring Europe I would use a leather backpack or something a little more blendy. I used to travel in Europe a lot in my pre-kids days both as a student and then again in my job and I tried to blend as much as possible and it worked well. I have never had problems with theft and I even did crazy things like sleeping overnight in the Prague train station. I think if you're traveling with a group in Europe you're going to look like a tourist regardless of what you do. I'd recommend being smart and keeping your money inside your clothes in a pouch instead of in your bag or pocket.
    Since we're continuing on without ABD into Switzerland, any tips on blending in are appreciated!
     

    Chirple

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Sep 30, 2009
    I have yet to use the backpack we received for our 2016 AZ/UT trip in Europe (have used it in Bermuda), but then I don't normally carry a backpack while touring. I use a crossbody bag that has enough room to carry my camera, my reading glasses, some cleansing wipes, and a small flat wallet in a zipper compartment. If I have water, I am carrying it in my hand. If I take a sweater, I tie it around my waist.

    I like to have my personal belongings in front of me and not behind me.
     

    Jess_S

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    May 14, 2015
    Since we're continuing on without ABD into Switzerland, any tips on blending in are appreciated!
    The number one thing that we do to blend in is avoid talking loudly in English in places where pickpockets and scam artists are likely to be. I also dress up a bit more in European cities than I might at home (sun dresses for me and lightweight slacks and a polo for DH, rather than shorts and t shirts).
     

    Steven G

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jun 7, 2016
    I use my ABD backpack from 4 years ago almost everywhere I go, although that has mostly been in North America. It's my favorite backpack.
     

    pjacobi

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 20, 2001
    Do ABD guides and/or Disney get kickbacks on the percentage purchased at recommended stores when you wear ABD gear? This is a common practice of the travel industry. That's why tour groups always want you to wear a tour sticker on your shirt.


    -Paul
     

    OKW Lover

    Retired and living 2 miles from The Castle.
    DIS Lifetime Sponsor
    Joined
    Apr 29, 2004
    Do ABD guides and/or Disney get kickbacks on the percentage purchased at recommended stores when you wear ABD gear?
    I would be very surprised if the actual guides do. Perhaps the "step on" guides they use in some locations would?
     

    PAGeoPoloMom

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Jul 31, 2018
    I would add that I was using my ABD backpack in Peru this June....a very knowledgeable pickpocket got my cell phone...in the middle of our Disney group while we were navigating the Cusco Town Square. Lesson learned...wear the backpack on the front.
     

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