Peru is a fascinating place with stunning natural scenery, a deep cultural history, and amazing culinary experiences. However, when considering a trip to Peru, safety issues might be on the minds of many of you. As Peru has a bad reputation for safety and crime, it’s crucial to know the risks and how to stay safe while traveling there.
We’ll give you a brief overview of the security situation in Peru, various tips for a safe stay in Peru and what advantages you have when traveling in a group.
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Crime and Safety in Peru
Peru is one of South America’s most popular tourism destinations. Although there isn’t much violent crime in Peru for tourists, there can be a problem with scams, theft, and pickpocketing, especially in tourist areas. It’s recommended that you keep an eye on your possessions and stay away from carrying valuables in busy places.
Additionally, it is advised to only use authorized taxis from taxi applications and to avoid walking alone at night. In recent years, Peruvian authorities started projects to increase safety, including stepping up police presence in popular tourist sites and enforcing stiffer penalties for criminal activities.
Areas With Low and High Crime Rates
The districts in Lima where most travelers stay are Barranco, Miraflores or San Isidro. These places are very safe and you will see more local police or “serenazgo”, which is the municipal police.
However, as any major city in the world there are also areas with higher crime rates, such as Callao, San Juan de Lurgancho, and Comas. You won’t be staying in those districts as they are far away from the city center and don’t offer any remarkable things to see.
Government Initiatives to Increase Safety
The Peruvian government has taken initiatives to increase security and lower crime. The police force has recently undergone modernization and expansion, and community policing has received more attention.
In order to prevent crime and increase public safety, the government has also spent money installing more surveillance cameras.
Comparison to Other Latin American Nations
Peru has a lower crime rate than other nations in the region. Peru is ranked 13th out of 33 nations in Latin America and the Caribbean for having the highest homicide rate, according to the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime. Violence is far more prevalent in places like El Salvador, Honduras, and Venezuela.
Despite the fact that crime is a problem in Peru, it’s crucial to keep in mind that the vast majority of travelers have safe and very positive experiences. You may reduce your chance of becoming a victim of crime by being aware of your surroundings and implementing simple safety steps such as listed below in the article.
Is Peru safe to travel alone?
Although Peru is generally a safe country for solo travelers, it’s still recommended to use caution. Be aware of theft and pickpocketing, especially in crowded places, and make sure you’re not being followed when walking alone in the street after darkness.
You may enjoy your trip to Peru without worrying too much about safety if you follow the basic safety tips below.
Is It Safe to Travel to Peru With Kids?
There are many family-friendly activities and attractions in Peru for kids to enjoy. Visiting Peru with kids is safe, but we recommend to keep the following in mind:
- Vaccinations: Before flying to Peru, be sure that you and your children have all of the necessary vaccines. If you think you might need any extra shots, talk to your doctor.
- Altitude sickness: For youngsters to avoid altitude sickness, it’s crucial to gradually adapt and drink plenty of water. We don’t recommend kids under the age of 12 on any high-altitude tours, such as Rainbow Mountain or Humantay Lake.
- Food and water safety: Drink only bottled water, and stay away from potentially unsafe street food.
- Transportation: Avoid crowded buses or taxis and only use trustworthy travel options. For younger children, use car seats, and make sure everyone has their seat belts up.
Overall, is Peru a safe and wonderful place for families traveling with children if enough preparation and security measures are taken.
Is Peru Safe for Female Travelers?
Peru is generally a safe country for female tourists, but you should nevertheless take basic security measures to protect yourself. It’s crucial to be cautious and mindful of your surroundings wherever you go on vacation. Here are some recommendations for female solo travelers heading to Peru:
- Dress conservatively: Dress modestly and avoid being overly provocative to avoid attracting unwanted attention.
- Use reliable transportation: When traveling alone at night, especially in remote locations, stay in licensed taxis from taxi applications.
- Stay in a reputable hotel: Look for a hotel with good reviews, one that is in a secure neighborhood, and one that offers round-the-clock security.
- Limit the amount of information you reveal: When interacting with strangers, exercise caution and avoid sharing too much personal information.
- Learn basic Spanish: That will help you to communicate with locals and prevent misunderstandings.
Common Safety Concerns for Travelers in Peru
There are a few frequent safety issues that you should be aware of when traveling through Peru. Some of the most significant ones are listed below.
Crime and Pickpocketing
In busy places like marketplaces, bus stops, and tourist attractions, pickpocketing and other types of petty crime are frequent occurrences.
You should exercise prudence by avoiding carrying big sums of cash and hiding your valuables from view. Additionally, it’s critical to pay attention to your surroundings and stay away from walking alone in deserted areas.
Scams, Money Scams and Fraud
In Peru, particularly in tourist locations, scammers and fraudsters frequently target tourists. Some of the typical scams and frauds are:
- False police officers
- False taxis
- Overcharging for services
- False tour operators
- False banknotes (check our complete guide to money exchange in Peru to avoid any problems with this!)
It’s important that you exercise caution when interacting with new people or situations, as well as when handling money or personal information, to avoid falling prey to these frauds. We recommend reading our blog post on how to avoid falling victim to scams for more information.
Safety on the Road
Accidents are common in Peruvian traffic, which can be chaotic. When crossing streets, pedestrians should exercise extra caution and only do so in designated crosswalks. When using a taxi or other form of transportation, make sure the company is reputable and the driver is properly licensed. We recommend Uber or Cabify in Peru.
Altitude Sickness and Other Health Issues
You may experience altitude sickness, especially if you visit places like Cusco and Machu Picchu. In order to avoid altitude sickness, it’s crucial to take your time getting used to the altitude gradually and to always stay hydrated. Additionally, you should exercise caution when consuming street food and use bottled water for drinking and oral hygiene.
Natural catastrophes including earthquakes, landslides, and floods are common in Peru. That’s why it’s critical to keep up with local news and weather reports and any potential natural disasters.
In the event of a natural disaster, follow the advice of local authorities and seek safety right away. Having travel insurance that includes coverage for catastrophic events is always a smart option.
You can lower your risk and have a safe and happy journey to Peru by being aware of these frequent safety concerns. Do not hesitate to contact us if you have any worries or inquiries.
Tips for Staying Safe in Peru
Although Peru is generally a safe place to travel to, it’s always a good idea to exercise caution. The following advice will help you stay safe when visiting Peru
General Safety Advice
- Be aware of your surroundings: Always be on guard and conscious of your surroundings, particularly in crowded places, such as markets, bus stops, and tourist attractions.
- Avoid carrying large amounts of cash: Keep huge quantities of cash out of your pocket. Make use of credit cards and store your cash safely.
- Keep your valuables out of sight: Use a money belt or keep your wallet in your front pocket to conceal your valuables and prevent theft and pickpocketing.
- Use trustworthy tour companies and transportation providers: To avoid fraud and scams, read reviews and utilize trusted businesses.
- Stay at secure accommodations: Choose accommodations that are well-lit and have secure entrances and exits to ensure your safety.
- Use caution when connecting to free WiFi: Avert using unprotected networks to access confidential information.
- Keep critical records in a safe location: Keep your passport and other crucial papers in a secure location, such a hotel safe.
Tips for Specific Safety Concerns
- Theft and pickpocketing: Avoid carrying a lot of cash and wearing pricey jewelry to reduce the risk of theft and pickpocketing.
- Scams and fraud: Use recognized tour operators and transportation providers, and stay away from conversations with random people who approach you to offer you services or help.
- Use a reliable taxi service: The safest alternatives to taxis from the street are Uber or Cabify.
- Altitude sickness and other health issues: Give yourself time to adjust to high altitude locations and refrain from strenuous exercise until you do. Use bottled water to clean your teeth and to drink plenty of water.
- Dress modestly: Modest attire, especially while visiting places of worship, to show respect for regional traditions and customs.
- Be respectful: Respect others’ traditions and customs, and refrain from bringing up delicate political or social topics with locals.
- Learn the following Spanish proverbs: Speaking a few simple Spanish words can make it easier for you to interact with the community and respect their way of life.
You may have a secure and enjoyable trip to Peru by paying attention to these suggestions. Always be mindful of your surroundings and exercise caution to keep yourself safe.
Traveling with a Tour Group in Peru
For travelers who are worried about safety issues when traveling to Peru, taking a tour group can be a great choice. Here are some benefits of traveling in a tour group, safety measures that tour groups take, and suggested tour itineraries for travelers who are concerned about their safety.
Benefits of Touring in a Group
- Local knowledge: Tour guides have an in-depth understanding of the local way of life, traditions, and security issues, which can improve your vacation experience and keep you safe.
- Group security: Traveling together can help to reduce the risk of theft or other security issues.
- Convenient transportation: Tour companies frequently offer transportation, which can be safer and more convenient than utilizing the public system.
- Planning your itinerary: Tour groups usually have a well-thought-out schedule, which can help you make the most of your time in Peru and minimize safety risks.
Security Measures Used by Tour Companies
- Experienced tour guides: Tour groups often have competent, seasoned guides who are equipped to manage crises and safety concerns. Also, their drivers are licensed and experienced.
- Pre-screened accommodations and transportation: Both are normally pre-screened by tour operators to make sure they adhere to safety regulations.
- Group safety briefings: Tour companies generally give safety briefings to educate tourists on potential dangers and appropriate safety measures.
All of our tours that we conduct are equipped with destination expert guides that have done more than 1000 tours and licensed drivers that drive pre-screened vehicles. Your safety is our highest priority so that you can enjoy the sites and have an uncomplicated time.
Take a look at our different Peru tours that will inspire you for your trip to the land of the Incas.
Recommended Travel Packages for Cautious Tourists
- Cultural and historical tours: These excursions give you a deeper understanding of Peru’s history and culture while also allowing you to see famous locations like Machu Picchu. A great tour package that exactly combines all of that is our 6-day bestseller Peru tour.
- Tours that combine nature and adventure: Tours that combine nature and adventure offer a special approach to see Peru’s natural beauty and also give you the chance to go hiking or get to know the jungle.
- Food and drink tours: These excursions provide you with the chance to sample Peru’s diverse culinary scene and discover the cultures and traditions of the region.
Follow Our Advice for a Safe Time in Peru
Peru is typically safe for travelers, despite the fact that there are certain safety concerns you have to know about in order to prepare appropriately. Most of the safety precautions are common sense and only few tourists ever have problems when traveling throughout the country. The friendliness of the people, the beautiful landscapes and the delicious food are what makes this country so incredible.
If you need help planning your unforgettable trip to Peru, fee free to email us at: email@example.com.