China : Safety by CityChina safety as a country
The capital city of the most populous country in the world, the People’s Republic of China, is Beijing, with a population of more than 21 million people. Beijing represents the political, economic and cultural center of the country.
Besides being extremely attractive for tourists due to the fact that the most-visited portions of the Great Wall of China are here, Beijing has many other important landmarks like Tiananmen Square, the world’s largest public square, the Great Hall of the People, the Museum of the Chinese Revolution and the Forbidden City. Another remarkable and well known sight is the Ming Dynasty City Wall Site Park that dates from the medieval period.
The most important is that almost all parts of the city are considered safe for tourist.
Warnings & Dangers in Beijing
OVERALL RISK : MEDIUM
While in Beijing, travelers should only pay special attention to people around them in order not to become the victim of petty crimes. As in any other huge and populous city, thieves are frequent, so avoid going to isolated areas and showing your valuables in public. There is very little risk of more serious crime acts against tourists in Beijing.
TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : MEDIUM
The usage of taxis is Beijing can make you become a victim, since many of taxi drivers tend to overcharge or rob the passenger. Unlicensed and unmetered taxis should not be taken regarding the fact that there have been occurrences of sexual assault when travelling alone in a taxi at night. The best solution is to use public transport which is inexpensive and available.
PICKPOCKETS RISK : HIGH
As long as you remain watchful over your belongings, you will not become an easy prey for lawbreakers. Tourists are very attractive because of their passports, laptops, mobile phones, purses and wallets. The major tourist sites are areas where thieves and pickpockets usually work.
NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : MEDIUM
Air pollution, typhoons and earthquakes are possible natural disasters in Beijing. If you happen to be there during any of these incidents, you should follow the advice of the local authorities.
MUGGING RISK : LOW
There are very rare reports of a serious crime performed against foreigners, so you can feel protected in terms of kidnapping and mugging. However, these kinds of incidents cannot be predicted so tourists should remain vigilant.
TERRORISM RISK : LOW
The possibility of terrorist attacks in China is at a low level, but due to the previous attacks this kind of incident can happen. Tourists might not be the direct target, but the attacks usually happen during holidays or in crowded places, which can affect tourists.
SCAMS RISK : HIGH
Scam risk is very frequent in Beijing and it is increasing even more. The problem of counterfeit currency turns into a serious one, since there have been reports on receiving a fake banknote even from ATMs. Travelers need to check them carefully before accepting notes, because banks do not accept them.
WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : LOW
As long as female travelers follow the safety precautions and practice common sense while in Beijing, there is not necessity for any kind of fear and panic. Beijing is not dangerous for women, even if they travel solo.
So... How Safe Is Beijing Really?
Beijing is a city where the whole historical transformation of China can be seen. The Forbidden City, Temple of Heave, Summer Palace, Ming Tombs and parts of the Great Wall are just a few among numerous tourist attractions.
Nevertheless, the enormous population in combination with extensive number of tourists leads to various types of crime and law-breaking. Drug smuggling, pickpocketing and thefts are increasing.
However, as long as travelers take extra care at tourist sites and crowded streets, there is no danger of becoming a victim. In comparison with other capital cities around the world, Beijing is more than safe.
- Visas - As far as visas are concerned, there are different rules in China. You must get a visa before you arrive and it can be obtained in the Chinese Embassy. However, for those travelers that are just transiting China, there is a possibility to enter without a visa. Your passport must be valid for at least 6 months when you enter China.
- Currency - China is still a country where cash is the basic means of payment, and its currency is called yuan or renminbi. Do not rely only on your credit card, since many services do not accept it. The ATMs are available only in major cities and you cannot exchange Scottish or Northern Irish bank notes.
- Weather - Continental climate influenced by monsoons is characterized by hot summers and cold winters. There is a rainy season in Beijing, lasting from February to September and typhoon season, from May to November. The best time to visit Beijing is in September and October, during autumn.
- Airports - You can come to Beijing via Beijing Capital International Airport which is located 26 km from the center of the city. It is the world's second busiest airport and it is used both for domestic and foreign trips. Another one is Nanyuan Airport, 13 km away from Forbidden City, but it is used only by China United Airlines for domestic flights.
- Travel Insurance - The decision to travel abroad is your choice and you are responsible for your personal safety so you should have a travel insurance policy when arriving to China. It should include medical treatment in case of illnesses or accidents, and the coverage of baggage loss or theft.