How Safe Is Bogotá for Travel?

Bogotá, Colombia
Safety Index:
46

Bogotá is a huge Colombian city, with a population of about 8.8 million people.

La Candelaria is a well-known district where many important historical events took place regarding the Colombian and South American independence.

Some most significant sights are La Catedral, Plaza de Bolivar, Palacio de Nariño, Iglesia del Carmen, among others.

The interesting fact is that in most of the museums you do not need to pay the admission fees.

The city is the hub of most tourism in Colombia and it is in constant growing and development.

Warnings & Dangers in Bogotá

Overall Risk

OVERALL RISK : MEDIUM

According to the location score in terms of safety in Bogotá, it can be said that standard safety precautions are a necessity. Even though there are no reports of violent crimes against travelers, you should always remain vigilant. There have been a few robberies involving violence and muggers with knives are seen around the city.

Transport & Taxis Risk

TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : MEDIUM

Once in Bogotá, make sure you call radio taxis since traveling by the unlicensed one entails many risks. There were dangerous situations with the taxi drivers, when they assaulted the passengers, took their valuables and money. If you realize that you are overcharged, try to get your money back, but do not force them too much, because they tend to become aggressive.

Pickpockets Risk

PICKPOCKETS RISK : HIGH

The crime rate shows that crime is widespread in Bogotá. Street crime including pickpocketing and purse snatching are common on crowded buses and the TransMilenio. Armed robbery is frequent in known tourist areas, like La Candelaria, and they should be avoided after dark. If you're aware of the threat, you will be an unwelcoming target for the lawbreakers.

Natural Disasters Risk

NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : MEDIUM

Bogotá has an increased risk of earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. Heavy rains may lead to flooding and landslides, which in turn affects the daily flow of transport.

Mugging Risk

MUGGING RISK : MEDIUM

Muggings are on a constant rise in Bogotá, and the often include violence and armory. People who happen to be alone after dark in urban areas are often the targets. Kidnappings o also occur and the usual strategy is to catch the victim in the taxis. If you happen to be the prey of muggers or kidnappers, the most advisable thing to do is to give them money and electronics, since the confrontation may lead to more serious consequences.

Terrorism Risk

TERRORISM RISK : MEDIUM

Organized crime, like the drug trade, and the attempts of the authorities to stop it is one of the major triggers which can lead to attacks. This means that everyone can become a victim, even though tourists are not the direct target since the attacks usually occur in crowded areas.

Scams Risk

SCAMS RISK : HIGH

Taking into account the fact that taxi drivers always try to trick foreigners and overcharge them, tourists need to practice common sense. Counterfeit money and credit card skimming is also frequent types of scams. There were reports when thieves even acted as police officers.

Women Travelers Risk

WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : MEDIUM

Even though most of the women that visited Bogotá enjoyed their stay without any problems, there are reports of sexual assault against solo female travelers. To avoid being easy prey, women should not wear designer labels and attractive jewelry or expensive camera. They should never look disoriented, even if they are because the lost tourist is a perfect target for thieves.

So... How Safe Is Bogotá Really?

For most of the vigilant and attentive tourists, this beautiful city is a safe place to visit.

Nevertheless, there is a street crime like theft, pickpocketing, and purse snatching as in any major city.

While in certain areas like Ciudad Bolivar, El Codito, Kennedy and Soacha and Monserrate be aware of the possibility of mugging and theft and try to limit your activities to the daytime.

Considering the fact that Bogotá has become a great tourist destination and one of the most visited cities in Colombia, authorities tend to make Bogotá an even safer and better city for tourist, so the introduction of police patrols during the night and the transport development enable travelers to enjoy the vibrant nightlife and culture in Bogotá without worrying about their safety.

How Does Bogotá Compare?

CitySafety Index
Bogotá46
Medellin52
Cartagena82
Barranquilla47
Cali52
Phnom Penh (Cambodia)61
Niagara Falls (Canada)87
Calgary (Canada)82

Useful Information

  • Visas - The only documentation that you need when visiting Bogotá for less than 90 days is the valid passport. However, there are countries whose citizens must apply for a visa at the Colombian consulate in their home country. To find out whether you need a visa or not, you can visit certain websites and get all the necessary information.
  • Currency - The official currency in Colombia is the Colombian peso and tourists can easily exchange money in the exchange offices in Bogotá. Bear in mind that most banks do not exchange money. ATMs are available throughout the city, but it is advisable to use those in shopping centers or inside banks rather than those in the street.
  • Weather - Bogotá has a subtropical highland climate because it is located on a high plateau in the Northern Andes Mountains. This means that it is cool during the day with an average temperature from 6 to 19 °C on sunny days. The rainy season is from May to November.
  • Airports - The major and busiest airport in Bogotá is El Dorado International Airport which is 20 minutes away from the city center by taxi. Other alternative airports when coming to Colombia are José María Córdova International Airport and Rafael Núñez International Airport.
  • Travel Insurance - Travel insurance that covers illness or injury, theft and other accidents that may occur during your travels is necessary when traveling abroad. Since coverage depends on the type of insurance that you buy, you should always ask for details when buying it.
Click here to get an offer for travel insurance

Bogotá Weather Averages (Temperatures)

Jan 13° C
Feb 14° C
Mar 14° C
Apr 15° C
May 14° C
Jun 14° C
Jul 13° C
Aug 14° C
Sep 14° C
Oct 14° C
Nov 14° C
Dec 14° C
Choose Temperature Unit

Average High/Low Temperature

Temperature / MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
High
°C
202020201919181919191920
Low
°C
678999888887
High
°F
686868686666646666666668
Low
°F
434546484848464646464645

Where to Next?

9 Reviews on Bogotá

  1. No terrorism

    About this review: all very honest but drug terrorism. We don’t see that since 80s and now they target specific people because of activism but never tourists. Even being like this, there hasn’t been any terrorism case since the 2000s in Bogotá

  2. I loved it

    Bogota is awesome!
    Beautiful and the locals are friendly to tourists.
    Great city for parties and enjoying nature around the city. highly recommended.

  3. D
    Derick L. says:

    Beautiful BIG City

    I have gone to Bogotá twice. Both times I enjoyed my stay. Is it the safest place to travel to? No, but what major city in the world is? There is always a downside. If you are experienced with travel and you know how to protect yourself and your items, there is nothing to worry about. I will be going back in the future.

  4. Affordable and cheap

    The locals are actually friendly but be wary of the taxi drivers who want to trick you just because you are a foreigner. Not to generalize all of them, but we encountered a couple when we there, make sure the meter is turned on and be aware of the prices. Price wise, Bogota is affordable and cheap. You don’t need to break bank to enjoy what Bogota has to offer.

  5. I had a lot of fun in Bogota

    Bogota is not as unsafe as some make it out to be. We were perfectly safe here on our trip. Of course you need to pay attention to your surroundings and your belongings but that’s the case for any place. Experimental theater is one of the best attractions here and locals are friendly towards tourists.

    1. J
      Jim Cartner says:

      Colombia in and of itself is not safe. No matter what city. I am not sure what you are on about. I have been all over for work and I have had a number of issues myself. I have seen women being harassed and even hit in public. Sure, the cities have beautiful places but unless you are here often enough, you will not see the bad side.

  6. R
    Richard says:

    It can be a nice experience but you need to know a few things

    As a tourist and keeping to the tourist path things can be nice and safe in Bogota. But if you stay here long enough and start venturing out of the regular, tourists routes then you will inevitably start to see the bad part of this city. Pickpockets are just the start. You need to protect your purse and phone at all times as these are the easiest things they will try to steal.

    Muggings happen here, in some areas that you should avoid anyway and especially during the night. During the night, the city is very dangerous in non-tourist areas but I would avoid doing things alone during night time no matter the area. You might be fine if you do but bad things do tend to happen at night so why not be smart about it?

    There is also counterfeit money running around and sometimes it’s hard to spot it. Taxi drivers (not all) can be aggressive in their language and even physically and will try to overcharge for most fares. Also be careful about credit card skimming as it happens here a lot. Not trying to scare you off but it’s better to know what you may encounter if you come to Bogota.

    This is a beautiful place, with a lot to see but some people in it are bad and only want to steal from you. Paying close attention to your surroundings, going in groups of at least 3-4 and never with just women in the group – all of this will make things a lot safer here.

    One of the first things I like to do when I get to a new place is to take a free walking tour with a guide. This lets me see the city and learn more about it from my guide. I will often ask about the good, the bad and the ugly and learn a lot and this is true for Bogota as well. This is invaluable if you ask me.

    Do this in every city you visit and you will gain a wealth of knowledge about that place.

  7. Be Very Careful in Bogots 2022

    You MUST watch out in Bogota, even in “nice” residential areas. Street crime is ever-present and increasing. Robbery with knives is rampant, even during the day. If you see 2 men on a motorcycle (or even 2 motorcycles with 2 men on each like happened to us), you’re about to get robbed.
    Carry a dummy wallet. Don’t wear jewelry. If you show your cellphone, you’re a target. Walk on the sidewalk facing on-coming traffic so you don’t get surprised from behind. Be vigilant. NOWHERE is safe. Walking at night is NOT recommended.
    Call for taxi’s or use Uber. I’ve been coming to Bogota since 2013. The city has definitely devolved since then.

  8. J
    Jorge Vasco says:

    Attention Fox

    As a colombian, I must warn everyone of the dangers of Colombia. As a tourist you will always stand out, do not try to camouflage among locals, you look like a fly in milk. It is a very messy country and everyone looks out for themselves. So you must be cautious and cunning. The police are useless, and outside the hotel you are on your own. It’s real: millionaire ride in a taxi or uber, pills in the drink, robbery with scopolamine, pickpocketing with a dagger is a national sport. It is real. Attention to those who are looking for other types of “experiences” because it can be quite expensive, I mean those who asks for hallucinogenic drugs, they always are cheated with some kind of oregano grass or a drug soup that contains even caffeine, without saying that can lose (even the kidney). If you go in your plan and stick to it and go to tourist places, you will surely meet friendly and cordial people.

Rated 3.44 / 5 based on 9 user reviews.

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