We see it all the time: people in brightly colored vests walking in and out of places without question. The assumption is almost always that these people work for the place that they’re entering but, apparently, this isn’t always the case. Just ask David Allegretti.
According to Allegretti, “There’s a loophole into getting into places for free, if you’re so inclined. You just need to pretend to be an important person. And people who wear hi-vis are important in the sense that they fix things no one else cares about. If you see someone in hi-vis stepping through a barricade, or marching past a bouncer, you naturally assume they’re headed to fix something.”
David brought his friend Sean along for a day of minor infiltration, wearing high-vis vests and gaining access to pretty much everywhere without those pesky ticket prices. David then wrote about it for Vice. Here’s where they went.
First the two decide to go to the movie theater, which is a pretty safe bet when you consider how little most movie theater employees actually seem to care most of the time. The two marched right into the theater to see Office Christmas Party, claiming the giddy thrill of sneaking in may have improved the overall quality of the movie.
The two were apparently nervous about this one, idling outside before finally pushing their way in. This also turned out to be an easy one, and they politely interacted with zoo employees. David said, “Families were fooled too, because every now and then we’d get asked what time the zoo shut or directions to the monkeys.”
This one is apparently a bust, with Allegretti quipping that the tourist bus he and his friend tried to board had “the best security in all of Melbourne.” This makes total sense, however, when you consider the fact that a bus driver would be well aware of any need for maintenance workers on his vehicle. Zoos and movie theaters have bathrooms, electronics issues, and box office workers not privy to every little thing. The bus has just the one driver, and the driver knows all. (The driver also likely has experience with other people using feigned importance for free rides).
Knowing they had a friend inside whose name they could drop if trouble arose, the two troubleshot their way into a Coldplay concert. Once they got in, the friend hooked them up with temporary passes, so we don’t know for sure if they would’ve gotten thrown out without the extra help.
Of course, David and his buddy Sean aren’t the only people to try out this handy (and from a security standpoint, kind of scary) trick. And if you have doubts about how much the hi-vis vests really helped those guys get into the concert (what with their friend on the inside), there’s also this guy, who used a hi-vis vest to get backstage at a Miley Cyrus concert a few years ago.