Thinking of who the other punters are is pointless. Unless you set up a surveillance operation for a couple of days before your punt you will never know, so no point in being concerned about it.
As for the area, I have never got to a venue and turned around because it's to shitty. As with others I use street view to look at it, plan where to park and sort out any parking restrictions. If the area is shitty then I will find somewhere a bit further away to park and then walk.
I suppose I could get a punting car, could then hide the punting phone in it. Only problem is hiding the fucking car.