A FAMILY of six were left stranded in Rome after a hotel safe containing their passports, credit cards and cash was stolen.
The entire safe was ripped from the wall in their hotel room, along with one of their suitcases.
Cassandra Cahill, from the US, was travelling with her mum and dad, younger siblings and her sister’s boyfriend around Rome at the time and were due to board a Royal Caribbean cruise just days later.
While staying at Hotel Genova, they locked all of their valuables away in the in-room safe before exploring the city.
After returning to their room, they found the entire safe had been ripped from the wall and taken.
It contained all six of their passports, around €1,500 (£1,358) in cash, a phone, a purse and credit cards.
Thieves also emptied her brother’s suitcase and stole it, which Cassandra believed was how they transported the safe.
Cassandra wrote on Facebook: “Last night, my family and I arrived back to our hotel room in Rome only to find our safe with all of our passports, money, and other valuables missing (literally ripped out of the wall) along with some of our luggage, a purse, and a cell phone.”
She added: “We are currently stuck in Italy until further notice.”
The family quickly called the police, only to hit more trouble – their embassy wasn’t open until after the weekend.
Cassandra told CTVNews.ca: “They couldn’t do anything until the weekend was over.
“We felt a little lost because that’s who’re supposed to turn to. It was unsettling.”
What Italian laws say about passports
Different countries have different laws around photo IDs of cruise ship passengers.
According to the FCO, in Italy: “By law you must be able to show some form of identification at all times.
“In most cases a photocopy of the data page of your passport should suffice, but you may be asked to accompany the police to collect the original document, or to produce it within 12 hours.”
Police investigated the room, and the family spent six hours at the local station.
Not only were the family stuck in Rome, but they were unable to board their Royal Caribbean cruise that Sunday as they didn’t have their passports.
According to CTVNews.ca, the cruise company said they would not be able to refund the family or reschedule their trip for them.
Cassandra explained that they had bought non-refundable tickets and so there were “no exceptions”.
The family have since been in touch with Canada’s Ambassador to Italy, who is working to get them the correct documents so they can get home.
Fortunately, they still have other credit cards they could use.
Cassandra also saw the silver lining, posting on social media: “On the bright side, this is a beautiful country with amazing food — definitely not the worst place to be trapped!”
Another family were unable to go on holiday to Cyprus after burglars stole all their passports the day before they were due to fly.
An expert has revealed how to make sure your hotel safe is secure – by checking the override code.
Sun Online Travel has contacted Royal Caribbean and Hotel Genova for comment.