Rio de Janeiro's breathtaking beaches, impressive topography, and the most iconic tourist hotspots make it an unmissable vacation destination. Like any other urban city, Rio has small-time criminals, petty thieves, drug lords - and tourists can become prime targets. Here are some tips to stay safe in the city.
Look like a Local:
It always feels good to wear comfortable clothes, and the best combo would be to wear jeans-and-sneakers. Looking like a tourist wearing Hawaiian shirt-sorts could spell trouble.
Leave expensive stuff at home:
It's always the expensive stuff that is prone to get snatched or pick-pocketed. This includes your favourite iPhone, camera, jewellery, laptop, cash, credit cards, and passport. It is best that you carry only what is necessary during your sight-seeing stint and leave the rest back at your hotel or apartment.
Get a map:
A physical map always helps to locate your points of interest, hotel or apartment. Online map applications (like Google maps) are also handy. The premise is to know your terrain through the map. Also, remember to refer to the maps/apps before you head to the destination.
Take care at night:
Walking alone at night should be avoided like any other city. Try and avoid areas which are far from the bustle of the main street.
Stay alert in favelas:
The favelas (slums or shantytowns) of the city in the south zone are still safe. However, there are illegal activities in the city centre and the north zone. So, it is best to avoid favelas in such areas and stay alert.
Avoid leaving your belongings unattended:
Any belongings that are unattended are prone to get stolen. So, do take care that they are not unattended.
Prefer taking taxis:
You could avoid buses to get around and take taxis instead. Though the buses are air-conditioned and work well when you are on a budget. However, taxis will take you directly to the attractions in Rio and they are easier to book.