Traveler's Notes . . .


Pickpocketing has dramatically increased on San Francisco buses and streetcars in the last three months, city officials said. In one ruse, thieves squirt catsup on a person's jacket, then "help" clean it up--while lifting the wallet. . . . The Skier's Edge gives weekly updates via fax, starting Nov. 26, on snow conditions at 55 resorts worldwide, using information from local ski shop employees and others. It costs $95 a year to subscribe; tel. (800) 754-9995. . . . Starting in mid-December, Amtrak stations in Los Angeles, San Diego and Oakland plan to begin accepting debit cards.

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