Wallet stolen! - What now?

What would you do if you suddenly realised that your wallet was stolen? Worst case scenario: It happens on a holiday, while you are in a country where people speak a language you don't know… This unit is going to prepare you for a situation like that. Here, you can learn what to do when you wallet gets stolen and how to talk about it in English. You will learn important words and phrases and prepare yourself for unlucky situations with our exercises.
How would you react if your wallet got stolen? Would you panic? Or would you make rational decisions? I hope that after this unit, you won't…
Before we really start, watch this short video clip!
Can you answer the questions below?
    • What should you not do when your wallet is stolen?
      • Try not to look suspicious.
      • Scream as loud as you can for help!
      • Don't panic!
    • What do you think this unit is about?
      • Learning how to react when your wallet gets stolen.
      • Learning how to be a good police officer.
      • Learning how to steal a wallet.
Now it's time for some new vocabulary! Take a look at the table below. Some of the words have already come up in the previous video, other's will come up later. Try to memorise them. If you click on the small minus sign that you can see in the upper right corner of every box in the table, you can hide the different columns. That can help you to memorise the words!
to be robbed
If something gets stolen from you, you can say "I was robbed!"
police report
Calling the police and making an official statement about what has happened is called "police report".
The act of stealing something is called "theft" and the person who does it is called "thief".
credit card
Credit cards are for making cashfree payments. It is dangerous to lose them.
cell phone
= mobile phone
national credit reporting agency
In the United States this is the agency that organises credit transfers and that you have to turn to when you get robbed.
fraud alert
If you make a fraud alert, you tell credit agencies that you lost your credit card and they will not accept payments made with that card anymore.
Now you can watch an interview with a real police officer, who is going to tell you what to do if you get robbed.
    • What does the police officer tell us?
      • Make a list of all that is in your wallet and take it with you wherever you go. Leave your real credit cards at home instead.
      • Make a list of all your credit cards so that if something happens you know what you have to cancel.
      • Make a list of all your credit cards so that if you lose your wallet you can tell other people what they should look for.
We're not done with the police officer yet! Watch the second part of the video!
Can you now fill in the gaps in the text below?
These are the words you should use: pocket, button, cash, recommend, chest, grab, wallet
    •  I 
       not to carry too much 
       on you.
    •  I recommend using a bag that you wear across your 
       , so that people cannot simply 
       it from you.
    •  You shouldn't carry your 
       in your back 
       but rather in a front pocket or a pocket with a 
What to do when you realise that your wallet is gone? Think about what you have learned so far and put the steps below into the right order!
  • Step 3
  • Step 1
  • Step 2
  • Call the police and tell them that you have been robbed.
  • Call your credit card agencies and tell them to place a fraud alert on your name.
  • Make a copy of your credit cards as long as you still have your wallet.
Take a look at the words below! Which of these could be useful in case you are robbed?
Now to finish this unit, I want you to write your own police report! Just imagine what you would tell the police if your wallet got stolen!

How to report a theft?

Tell the police…
  • Who are you?
  • What happened?
  • When did it happen?
  • Where did it happen?
Hello! My name is Andrew Adams. I would like to report that my wallet has been stolen. It happened today between 3 and 4 o'clock, I think. I was doing some shopping in the city centre and I went to a restaurant to have lunch. That's where the theft must have taken place.

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If you're happy and you know it... clap your hands and post your results on Facebook!
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