Nelson man Gerard Black is disappointed with the introduction to the region two tourists he met at Tahunanui Beach have experienced.
He was on the scene on Friday around 1.30pm when the pair discovered their car had been broken into.
He met the French woman and man of unknown origin when all three waited to refill their water bottles, but a thief struck while the pair were away from their vehicle.
Black thought they would only have left the car unattended for a few minutes, confirming that they had locked it. "The front door was busted. It had been attacked with a screwdriver or something."
A camera, laptop and passports were taken.
Black was unimpressed with the response from Nelson police, saying that they had requested the travellers file a report at the John St central station rather than sending a police car to the beach.
He felt the station would be difficult for tourists to find, especially those with poor English.
"My heart goes out to them because they want to have a nice holiday and some opportunist just breaks in and flogs their belongings."
Nelson police spokeswoman Lisa Colville said the pair came into the police station to file a more detailed report, which was the best option under the circumstances so they could also help them with passport and bank advice.
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