How Safe Is Oaxaca for Travel?

Oaxaca, Mexico
Safety Index:

If you want to come to Oaxaca but you do not know what can be done and seen there, we will tell you that one of the top things to do in Oaxaca is exploring the central part of the city.

This part of the city is a great place to do some serious sightseeing, but you should not miss visiting the Templo de Santo Domingo, which is the 16th-century Baroque Catholic church.

You can expect pretty much from Oaxaca, being that the city is known for its delicious food, colorful streets, and beautiful ruins.

Warnings & Dangers in Oaxaca

Overall Risk


We cannot say that Oaxaca is either dangerous or not, as it mostly depends on the person who is visiting it. The majority of tourists leave it without any problems, but there are still those who had a bad experience there.

Transport & Taxis Risk


If you have decided to drive while in Mexico you should know that road conditions are not ideal. Be prepared to stop unexpectedly and beware of drivers who do not respect traffic signs.

Pickpockets Risk


It is important to take special care when withdrawing money from ATMs or exchanging money, as pickpockets tend to observe and follow those people and attack them when they are most vulnerable.

Natural Disasters Risk


The greatest part of Mexico is subject to earthquakes. Tremors occur regularly so tourists need to be ready for possible dangers and listen to the news so as to get the current information.

Mugging Risk


Tourists should take precautions as there has been a rise in drug-related crime, and should not get involved with any kind of drug-related activities. If you are attacked with a gun, do not resist.

Terrorism Risk


Mexico is not a country where terrorist attacks happen so the risk of the attacks is low. Tourists can feel free when this kind of danger is in question.

Scams Risk


One of the possible scams is people presenting themselves as police officers. Their aim would be to rob you by trying to fine or arrest you without any reasons. Ask for identification and if they do not give it, try to find help.

Women Travelers Risk


Mexico is a country where crime is on the rise, and females should be very careful when coming there. They should always be in groups or with a male by themselves so as to feel safer.

So... How Safe Is Oaxaca Really?

Foreign visitors are frequently targeted by scammers who might approach you asking for financial help and you are suggested not to speak to them.

If strangers offer you a drink on the street, do not accept it as those might be scammers who would like to drug you with the intention to assault you or take your money.

If you have decided to drive in Mexico you should know that changing lane without indicating and going through red lights is frequent among Mexican drivers, so you have to be extra careful when driving.

There have been incidents of short-term kidnapping and victims were forced to withdraw funds from credit or debit cards.

If this happens to you, you should accept to give them what they request and not attempt to resist such attacks, as they might lead to more serious consequences.

Considering the fact that political demonstrations are common and can occur across the country, tourists are advised to stay away from these gatherings.

We suggest that it is safer to use ATMs during the day and to find those inside shops or malls being that there is a high risk of being attacked, assaulted and robbed if thieves notice that you have taken cash.

How Does Oaxaca Compare?

CitySafety Index
Playa del Carmen69
Cabo San Lucas68
Phnom Penh (Cambodia)61
Niagara Falls (Canada)87
Calgary (Canada)82

Useful Information

  • Visas - The entry requirements for tourists include the passport validity which should cover the period you are staying in Mexico and an immigration form that can be obtained either when you arrive or online in advance.
  • Currency - Due to the fact that there are numerous counterfeit notes, travelers are suggested to exchange money in banks and exchange offices. The official currency in Mexico is the Mexican Peso.
  • Weather - The climate here is a local steppe climate, meaning that there is very little rainfall during the year. May is the warmest month while January is the coldest month. Still, temperatures are high above freezing.
  • Airports - If you want to come to Oaxaca by plane, you should use Xoxocotlán International Airport which is located at Oaxaca. The airport operates both domestic and international air traffic.
  • Travel Insurance - We are advising travelers to take travel insurance prior to coming to Mexico in order to avoid possible unpleasant consequences later.
Click here to get an offer for travel insurance

Oaxaca Weather Averages (Temperatures)

Jan 17° C
Feb 19° C
Mar 21° C
Apr 22° C
May 23° C
Jun 22° C
Jul 21° C
Aug 21° C
Sep 21° C
Oct 20° C
Nov 18° C
Dec 17° C
Choose Temperature Unit

Average High/Low Temperature

Temperature / MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec

Where to Next?

3 Reviews on Oaxaca

  1. H
    Holley D says:

    I felt safe in Centro. Took a guided tour into the food market Central de Abastos and was told before getting close to take my watch off and keep my camera in my bag. They told me to ask whenever I wanted photos as they would take them or tell me where it was safe to take phone out of my bag.

  2. Me Quiero Oaxaca

    Have had no problems — if anything there are too many police milling around but people are gentle and kind. Several times people pointed out that I’d dropped or almost dropped money (I’m too likely to stuff bills in a pocket or forget to zip
    my backpack).

    Nothing but love for the people of Oaxaca.

  3. A beautiful city

    Overall I felt reasonably safe in Oaxaca. Yes, I took common sense precautions, but I do that anywhere. The city is very charming, most people are kind, and the food is nothing short of amazing. Highly recommend for those who wish to experience authentic Mexican culture.

Rated 4.67 / 5 based on 3 user reviews.

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