Is Guayaquil Safe? Crime Rates & Safety Report

Updated On November 7, 2023
Guayaquil, Ecuador
Safety Index:
* Based on Research & Crime Data
User Sentiment:
* Rated 60 / 100 based on 5 user reviews.

Guayaquil is the largest and most populous city in Ecuador.

Guayaquil is one of the leading South American ports in the Pacific.

In the last decade, the city has undergone positive change.

The beautiful riverfront promenade “Malecon 2000”, green areas, and modern shopping arcades all over the city attracts tourism from inside and outside the country.

Travelers come here to visit Ecuador culture, enjoy the tropical climate and see some attractions like The Malecon Simón Bolivar, Santa Ana & El Carmen hills, Las Peñas, where the city was founded, The Central Bank Building, Jardín Botánico (Botanical Garden), museums and parks, and many others.

Warnings & Dangers in Guayaquil

Overall Risk


Guayaquil is a rather poor city, and lawlessness flourishes in it. Most often, tourists become victims of robberies and fraud if they do not follow security measures. Walking alone around the city after sunset is strictly not recommended.

Transport & Taxis Risk


Public transport is not safe. It is better to use a taxi to get around the city, especially when you return late at night. Do not sit in the seat near the driver and always make sure that he has turned on the taximeter. If there is no taximeter, discuss the price of the trip before you sit inside the car.

Pickpockets Risk


Pickpockets and other petty thieves are particularly active in tourist areas, airports, restaurants, bus terminals, public markets. Thieves often distract their victims, sometimes by purposefully spilling liquid on a victim and pretending to help clean it up (condiment scam). At the same time, accomplices snatch the victim’s bag or pick the victim’s pocket. Be aware.

Natural Disasters Risk


Ecuador is located in an area of intense seismic activity. There is a high risk of earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and tsunamis. Before your trip here, study the current hazard level from these risks and take appropriate measures.

Mugging Risk


Armed robberies are quite common in Guayaquil. Do not wear expensive jewelry while outdoors; take some money with you. Carry a copy of your passport, including the entry page, and keep the original safe. Do not be on the streets of the city late at night and alone.

Terrorism Risk


Although Ecuador has no history of terrorism, it cannot be ruled out due to its proximity to Colombia. Some civil unrest occurs in the city from time to time, so in order not to get into a terrorist attack, stay away from political rallies and crowds.

Scams Risk


Most often, scammers here try to deceive tourists, sell them non-existent tours and excursions. In a taxi, you can be fooled by the price of the fare. And if you are given change in cash - dollars are often fake. Be mindful of your surroundings.

Women Travelers Risk


Women are not recommended to travel to Guayaquil alone. During the day it can be more or less safe, but at night you better not show on the streets. Besides, local men may show you unwanted increased attention.

So... How Safe Is Guayaquil Really?

Guayaquil is considered a rather unsafe city to travel.

Despite all the attractiveness for tourists, a high crime rate remains in the city.

Most crimes involve the theft of goods, car theft and hacking, drug trafficking, vandalism, and housebreaking.

Guayaquil also has a high crime rate and bribery.

Travelers should take specific precautions to protect themselves from harm.

The significant safety risks in the area are risks of victimization from petty theft and associated crimes.

These happen in the form of pickpocketing, purse snatching, cell phone snatching, and theft from vehicles.

Travelers should always keep all valuables locked in hotel safes.

This includes credit cards if you are going out at night.

Get the cash you need from the bank teller or ATM.

Leave the credit card at home in the hotel safe and not in your room.

Be alert and aware of your surroundings to protect yourself and know the numbers to local hospitals and embassies in case more severe problems occur.

Do not walk around on the streets at night, even in groups.

Keep your car doors locked at all times and windows rolled up.

Water from the tap is not drinkable.

How Does Guayaquil Compare?

CitySafety Index
Rio de Janeiro (Brazil)43
Sofia (Bulgaria)73
Siem Reap (Cambodia)63
Phnom Penh (Cambodia)61
Niagara Falls (Canada)87
Calgary (Canada)82

Useful Information



Most visitors to Ecuador can enter the country without a visa. However, some visitors from certain countries must first obtain a visa in advance before being allowed to enter the country. Visitors may stay up to 90 days, except citizens of Peru, who are allowed a maximum stay of 180 days, and citizens of China who are allowed to stay for 90 days per the calendar year. A valid passport is a must.



The present currency of Ecuador is the United States dollar. The United States dollar has a sign: $ and a code: USD. One dollar is divided into 100 cents.



The best times to visit Guayaquil for ideal weather are June to December. Average temperatures in Guayaquil vary very little, and the weather feels hot all year with a low chance of precipitation most of the year.



José Joaquín de Olmedo International Airport is the airport serving Guayaquil. It is the second busiest airport in Ecuador. The airport is located 5 kilometers north of Guayaquil's center.

Travel Insurance

Travel Insurance

The travel insurance policy is a must when visiting a foreign country. Make sure you got it before starting your journey, the customs officer may ask for it.

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Guayaquil Weather Averages (Temperatures)

Jan 28° C
Feb 28° C
Mar 28° C
Apr 28° C
May 27° C
Jun 26° C
Jul 25° C
Aug 25° C
Sep 26° C
Oct 26° C
Nov 26° C
Dec 27° C
Choose Temperature Unit

Average High/Low Temperature

Temperature / MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec

Ecuador - Safety by City

CitySafety Index

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5 Reviews on Guayaquil

  1. J
    Jasmine Hewitt says:

    Really awesome travel tips here, thank you!

  2. Ecuador is a very beautiful country. When travelling I rarely felt like I was in a sketchy area though a lot of locals would tell me stories about the unsafe areas. Stay closer to tourist safe area’s like the Malecon 2000 and Guyarte and avoid staying out late. Most importantly, enjoy all the food and amazing prices.

  3. M
    Mackenzie says:

    A lovely city

    When here make sure to visit Malecon 2000, La Perla, Garza Roja Parque Cultural and El Faro de Guayaquil. Many other places to visit but these stood out to me at least. I highly recommend Hotel del parque as it’s absolutely amazing (in and out). Radisson Hotel is also nice and a lot cheaper if you’re on a budget.

  4. Fake rating

    How could such a dangerous city with a high likelihood of crime have a score so high? This should be in the 30s!

  5. Super dangerous but very fun

    I love the city but it is crazy dangerous, you should never walk the streets or get a taxi without an app. Every one of my friends there has multiple stories of being robbed at gun or knife point. Look at the news, it’s undergoing a curfer to curb the gang violence.

    Update this, this is so wrong

Guayaquil Rated 3 / 5 based on 5 user reviews.

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