Rio de Janeiro is now safer than ever, but many people still expect to get kidnapped as soon as they step off the plane. Staying Safe in Rio is easy if you follow our advice.
Brazil has a reputation as being a ‘dangerous’ country, thanks in part to films like City of God and the Elite Troop series. While problems exist like in any other major city, Rio de Janeiro is no more dangerous than many other tourist destinations around the world and has actually seen a big drop in crime over the last few years.
The infamous favelas in Zona Sul, hillside slums that were once controlled by machine gun-toting drug gangs, are now firmly under the control of the police after they took back controlas part of the UPP initiative.
Still, just like in any other major city there is always a risk but follow these tips and you’ll stay safe when in Rio de Janeiro.
Staying Safe in Rio de Janeiro: Some Advice
1: Keep Valuables Hidden
Watches, jewellery and mobile phones/mp3 players should stay out of sight so as not to attract the attention of thieves. While street robberies are at an all-time low and you will see many people walking around chatting on mobile phones, it is still wiser to keep expensive items in your pocket when in public. You don’t necessarily need to stuff cash down your socks or use a hidden money belt, but just behave like you would if you were in any other urban centre or metropolis – don’t flash the cash.
2: Be Aware of Your Surroundings
Turn the wrong corner or walk down the wrong street and you might find yourself in a shady area, especially when you’re in some parts of Copacabana. During the daytime this usually isn’t a problem, but at night stick to well-lit roads with plenty of other people. A general tip in Zona Sul is if you’re walking up a hill, you’re getting closer to a favela.
3: Don’t Go To The Beach At Night
Not all beaches are good to visit after dark. Copacabana beach is now well-lit at night, with many brand new kiosks that are popular outdoor restaurants/bars. But walk a few metres onto the sand and you’re away from the lights and the safety they provide. As tempting as it may be to go for a midnight stroll in the surf, stay off the sand after dark as this is a common area that muggings take place.
Connection Rio offers guests the opportunity to stay in the safe neighborhoods of Barra and Barrinha, areas where street crime rates are far lower than the tourist trap areas of Zona Sul. Our safe and secure locations provide guests with comfort and security during their stay and we are happy to provide advice to anybody with reservations prior to their arrival.