Is Cuba Safe? Crime Rates & Safety Report

Updated On November 7, 2023
Safety Index:
* Based on Research & Crime Data
User Sentiment:
* Rated 85 / 100 based on 17 user reviews.

Cuba FlagCuba : Safety by City

Cuba is the largest Caribbean island located between the Caribbean Sea and the North Atlantic Ocean.

It is situated about 145km south of Key West, Florida, geographically positioned between the Cayman Islands and the Bahamas, to the west of Haiti, east of Mexico, and northwest of Jamaica.

Cuba is certainly a unique experience: with friendly, smiling people at every step (and that means literally at every step because, in Cuba, it is normal for people in every neighborhood to sit at the steps in front of their own houses and people-watch at all hours), gorgeous culture and staggering history, perfect beaches like the one in Varadero, and breathtaking sights in the capital of Havana (which is a landmark by itself) such as the well-known Malecon, you will certainly have a wonderful time.

Add in the never-before-seen nightlife and the music that will make your feet dance through no will of your own, with landmark cafes and clubs where Nat King Cole and Hemingway used to spend their time, such as La Bodeguita del Medio and El Floridita Bar, and you can rest assured that you will certainly never erase this country from your memory.

Warnings & Dangers in Cuba

Overall Risk


Cuba is, for the most part, a safe country to visit, though it's not without its dangers. You should be vigilant and take all possible precaution measures in order to minimize the risk of getting stolen from.

Transport & Taxis Risk


Cuba is filled with unlicensed cabs without meters so be sure to pre-arrange a ride with a reliable cab company. There are also many old-timers Cuba is known for that will overcharge you for a ride in their shiny car.

Pickpockets Risk


There is a threat of petty crime. Pickpockets do operate, especially at the beaches and in public transport so you should be extremely careful when handling your valuables and never carry your money in a purse or a pocket. Theft of hi-tech items is also on the rise.

Natural Disasters Risk


There is a hurricane season in Cuba, and it usually lasts from June to November. This is the only thing you should be aware of when it comes to natural disasters.

Mugging Risk


There have been reports of muggings happening in urban areas, but it's not that common of an occurrence because criminals would have to pay a steep price to the authorities if caught. There is usually no force or weapons involved.

Terrorism Risk


There haven't been any recent terrorist attacks in Cuba's recent history, but they shouldn't be ruled out. Be aware of your surroundings at all times.

Scams Risk


This is where you should be particularly careful: the local scammers. Taxi drivers will probably try to overcharge you for the ride, the local drifters will catch you on the street and convince you that they live in the same street your accommodation is, with a goal to attract your attention. They sometimes give you some advice where to go and what to do and then ask for a tip. Since cigars are their most popular product, Cubans will try to trick you into buying cheap ones making you believe they are original. Only buy cigars in official cigar shops.

Women Travelers Risk


Cuba is not only a low-risk destination for women, it is actually one of the destinations where women should feel very safe. Cuba is a country with a high degree of feminine integration into the society. It is almost a normal occurrence for a man to comment on the beauty of any woman and this should be taken as a compliment because it definitely was given as one. These comments do not have a sexual connotation and should be answered with a polite "gracias".

So... How Safe Is Cuba Really?

Cuba is generally very safe to visit, with strict laws and prominent policing, along with neighborhood-watch-style programs that exist in order to keep the streets violence-free.

As a tourist, even though the streets are dark and it feels like you should be very vigilant at every corner, in a few days you will start feeling very safe as there is virtually no gun crime, violent robbery, organized gang culture, teenage delinquency, drugs or dangerous forbidden-for-tourists zones.

Local criminals try to avoid targeting foreigners because, if caught, they are forced to pay a very steep price.

Apart from people trying to extort some money from you by offering you their help and local scammers that streets of Havana are filled with, you will have no problems.

However, due to very strict laws and dictatorship that has lasted for decades back, political topics should be avoided at all costs.

You should handle their political situation with respect and discretion and don’t start up a conversation about it, if not necessary.

Many older Cuban people will have zero tolerance for negative comments about the revolution or Fidel Castro.

Avoid references to countries linked with communism such as North Korea or the Soviet Union.

Generally speaking, Cubans will feel uncomfortable talking about politics or if they notice a negative attitude towards their political system.

How Does Cuba Compare?

CountrySafety Index

Useful Information



Many countries do need a visa for Cuba although there's a number of countries who don't. Residents of the U.S. weren't allowed to enter Cuba as tourists up until recently when that changed and now they are allowed but they do need a visa and the requirements are strict. Upon arriving to Cuba, you will get a tarjeta de turista and it will be valid for 30 days. Make sure your passport is valid for at least one month beyond your departure date. If you are not sure about your visa status, visit which will let you know whether or not you need visa based on your nationality and the country you want to visit.



There are two currencies in Cuba: Cuban Pesos (CUP) and Cuban Convertible Pesos (CUC). Tourists usually use the CUC as this is the money used to pay for hotels, food, services, sightseeing, etc. CUP is used for only a number of things, such as fruit and vegetables at the market. ATMs are generally rare in Cuba. Make sure you have cash with you.



The weather in Cuba is tropical, and thanks to the Caribbean current, its waters are warm. Apart from the aforementioned hurricane season that lasts from June to November, there is a dry season that falls between November and April, and the rainy season lasts from May to October. The average temperature in January is about 21°C and in July it's 27°C.



José Martí International Airport, sometimes referred to as its former name Rancho-Boyeros Airport, is an international airport and the main gateway into Cuba, located 15 km southwest of Havana, Cuba.

Travel Insurance

Travel Insurance

Just like anywhere else, we recommend getting travel insurance when traveling to Cuba, since it covers not only the costs medical problems, but also theft and loss of valuables.

Click here to get an offer for travel insurance

Cuba Weather Averages (Temperatures)

Jan 23° C
Feb 23° C
Mar 24° C
Apr 25° C
May 27° C
Jun 27° C
Jul 28° C
Aug 28° C
Sep 28° C
Oct 27° C
Nov 25° C
Dec 23° C
Choose Temperature Unit

Average High/Low Temperature

Temperature / MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec

Cuba - Safety by City

CitySafety Index

Where to Next?

17 Reviews on Cuba

  1. Safest I’ve ever felt

    I have honestly never felt safer as a tourist than when travelling in Cuba. The penalties for crimes against tourists are so draconian that the risk is very low. You are pestered by con artists but just be polite and firm.

    1. J
      Jake M. says:

      That is the thing. While it is safe for us to travel, it is NOT safe to live there. I have family there (on my wife’s side) and I know what terrible things take place. It is not somewhere I would vacation to, ever. I go with her to visit family. We are working on getting some of them out to become US citizens as she did.

      1. I dont get why we need to know this if we arent planning to live there? This website is about travelling not living

        1. Because the way a country treats its people is a deciding factor for some folks when deciding where to spend their money.

    2. Hi Chris, How certain are you about the safety of tourists in Cuba?

  2. Not sure if this rating is for Americans only or something … but is very unjust

    Cuba is very safe country

    1. What makes you say that Cuba is safe?

  3. Love Cuba

    Cuba is very safe. I love it there, and is my favorite country to visit. The people are very friendly and respectful. Of course you have minor scams, but what do you expect. Nothing bad to say, just respect the laws and the government rules, and you will have the best vacation ever

  4. Amazing place

    Loved Cuba! Amazing place, friendly people and Havana is just draw-dropping!!!

    Note to editors – how can it only have a safety rating of 47, despite you claiming it’s ‘very safe’ throughout the whole of the article?! Just doesn’t make sense!!!

  5. S
    Soren Nielsen says:

    For me,most safe place in the world!!

    I´m from Denmark,nr. 2 safest place,honestly im in Cuba every winter and feel MUCH safer
    than i do in Denmark where we have gang war and homeless people sleeping in the streets
    during the winter,police acting violent and incorrect and even some terrorist action.
    I seen several police actions in Cuba,always with large patience and corect handling.
    For me it is nonsenses that DK is 2 and Cuba 47!!!,it should be the other way around!!.
    Most dangers must be some terrorist actions years ago performed with support from USA via
    CIA. Mostly using exile Cubans to perform it.E.G. One Italien tourist died and 11 wounded when Hotel Copacabana was bombed 🙁 back in 97,along with 3 other Hotels.

  6. B
    Bryan Murphy says:

    I have been to Cuba 5 times and enjoyed every minute of it. So much history to learn and the architecture is spectacular and found the Cuban people to be very warm and friendly for the most part. My personal experience is that Cuba is very safe, I did not feel threatened at anytime and that included wandering around Havana at night which I can’t say about Mexico. Plan on returning to Cuba when this Covid show is over and will make it an extended stay the next time

  7. Ah, Cuba!

    Cuba is actually quite safe or at least you feel safe. I was with some friends and we had a lot of fun. Nothing out of the ordinary happened (nothing bad that is). Varadero Beach was special plus I highly recommend the Jardines De La Reina and Old Havana. For a good place to stay in the Hostal Refugio de Reyes is pretty affordable and very nice.

  8. D
    Dhsgydcgdegy says:


    Why do they only have one MacDonalds?

    1. No MacDonald's restaurants in Cuba

      There are no MacDonald’s restaurants in Cuba. You may find one in Guantanamo, however.

  9. Cuba is very safe-but use your common sense and do research before you go

    I’ve been to Cuba 15 times and I consider it to be very safe. Granted, there are plenty of Cubans that try to scam you-e.g., take you to a bar for a drink (for which you’ll have to pay an exorbitant price), ask you for gifts, claim it’s their birthday, etc., but a firm “NO” usually works. Also knowing some super basic Spanish helps a lot. We’ve used private (unlicensed) taxis many times with no problems. We always agree on the price beforehand-and to be very clear, we write it down so there are no problems or misunderstandings later on. On many occasions we walked at night in various towns and cities, with our cameras, and felt very safe.

    You say, “here are two currencies in Cuba: Cuban Pesos (CUP) and Cuban Convertible Pesos (CUC). Tourists usually use the CUC”. Please update your information: as of January 1, 2021, there is only one currency, Cuban Peso (CUP), which by the way, decreased from 25 pesos for $1 to about 200 peso for $1. US & Canadian dollars, Europ and credit cards are the main means of payments.

  10. E
    Elma Kutra says:

    It is not the same as the past – no food, no electricity and blackouts, government more oppressive, gas and food shortages and lots of petty crime – your article while entertaining fails to mention Cuba supports Russia and Russians are taking over sugar factories in Cuba and much more – tourist dollars support the tyranny of the Cuban government. If Cuba is so great why are they vast majority trying to escape?

  11. Everything looks and feels unsafer than it actually is

    In Cuba, everything, the cities, streets, shops, people look and feel unsafer than they in fact are. The streets and shops are darker in the night due to the scarcity of
    electricity. Especially in somewhat smaller cities like Santa Clara, there isn’t any reason for being scared or concerned. People are incredibly friendly and helpful. Even in the darkest streets you will encounter dancing and singing people. Even in Havana we felt unsafe in the beginning, but two days later we realised that there is no need at all to get concerned. Just try to get relaxed 🙂

Cuba Rated 4.24 / 5 based on 17 user reviews.

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