Professional Beggars and Panhandlers, from Life in the USA: The Complete Guide for Immigrants and Americans

Life in the USA is a complete guide to American life for immigrants and Americans. All materials on this site Copyright © Elliot Essman 2014. All rights reserved.    Home    Back    Next

Life in the USA
Everyday Life
Personal Safety

Professional Beggars
Professional beggars, also known as “panhandlers” are common in most American cities. Most will have some kind of “hard luck story.” A common story is that they are stuck and need just a few dollars for train-fare to get somewhere. The story might be long and elaborate. Some will just look as miserable as possible and hold out a paper cup, or attempt to wash your automobile windshield (even if it is already clean). No matter how convincing the story may seem--and a professional panhandler can be very convincing--it will be untrue ninety-nine out of a hundred times. You would do much more good contributing directly to one of the many charities that help homeless people.
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