Is Saint Petersburg Safe? Crime Rates & Safety Report

Updated On November 7, 2023
Saint Petersburg, Russia
Safety Index:
* Based on Research & Crime Data
User Sentiment:
* Rated 68 / 100 based on 5 user reviews.
TravelSafe Abroad

On Feb. 24, 2022, Russia invaded its neighbor country Ukraine, starting a war between these two countries.

This act of invasion caused many Ukrainians to flee their country and seek shelter in places like Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, etc…

At this time, we recommend no travel to Russia or Ukraine, or any neighboring countries for your own safety.

Saint Petersburg is Russia’s second-largest city and one of the main reasons tourists go to visit Russia.

It is located on the Neva River, at the head of the Gulf of Finland on the Baltic Sea and founded by Tsar Peter the Great

It was called Saint Petersburg (Peter’s city) for a while, but in September 1914, its name was changed to Petrograd, then to Leningrad, and finally in 1991 back to Saint Petersburg.

It was also the capital of Russia for a while. This city is filled with history, but Saint Petersburg is also one of the most modern cities in Russia, apart from being its cultural capital.

It also has a couple of Unesco World Heritage Sites, like the Historic Centre of Saint Petersburg and Related Groups of Monuments.

And of course, don’t forget the Hermitage, one of the largest art museums in the world.

Warnings & Dangers in Saint Petersburg

Overall Risk


Generally speaking, Saint Petersburg today is safe as much as other countries in Europe, despite its problematic history with criminal activity in the 90s. However, if you’re planning on traveling to Saint Petersburg, keep in mind that you should always keep your guard up and remain aware of your surroundings, just in case.

Transport & Taxis Risk


Generally speaking, transportation in Saint Petersburg is safe, but you should bear in mind that kidnappings have been known to happen, mostly in unlicensed taxis, so be careful when hailing one on the streets. Keep in mind that the most dangerous areas where small crime tends to occur are the underground walkways, called “perekhods”. Only use official services like Yandex Taxi, Uber or Gett taxi.

Pickpockets Risk


Pickpocketing is very common in Saint Petersburg, and surprisingly it is mostly performed by groups of children. Pay attention to your belongings, don’t leave them in plain sight and be especially careful in crowded places like stations or near tourist attractions.

Natural Disasters Risk


Saint Petersburg isn’t particularly susceptible to natural disasters. Some blizzards and snowstorms are possible during winter which can affect the traffic and delay your flights. During winter, be prepared to face the below-freezing temperatures.

Mugging Risk


The situation improved drastically when it comes to kidnappings and muggings. Generally, never accept free drinks or food when you’re in a club or a bar. Drink spiking and then attacking and robbing the victim have been reported on numerous occasions.

Terrorism Risk


After the recent terrorist attack in the subway in St. Petersburg the probability of this situation happening again is high.

Scams Risk


There are many scams in Saint Petersburg, usually performed by children trying to distract you and then steal some money from you. Never talk to strange kids on the street. Also, you should avoid playing street gambling games.

Women Travelers Risk


Women are generally safe in Saint Petersburg, though you should avoid finding yourself alone in clubs or bars, and of course, apply all normal precaution measures like avoiding remote and poorly lit streets and areas.

So... How Safe Is Saint Petersburg Really?

Saint Petersburg, like the rest of Russia, experienced a rise when it came to crime rates during the 1990s.

Violent crime, as well as petty crime and scams, have increased, but the biggest part of the violence was within the criminal groups themselves, and it didn’t affect foreigners that much.

However, it decreased since the 90s, so right now, for tourists, major cities like Moscow and St. Petersburg aren’t more dangerous than any other European city, they’re even less so.

When it comes to authority officials, you should keep in mind that they usually don’t speak English, so be understanding if someone doesn’t know how to communicate with you.

Speaking about the officials, don’t ever try to bribe them: you will be charged with bribery.

Bear in mind that if you are a member of the LGBT community, there is no reason to avoid Saint Petersburg altogether but you should refrain from any public displays of affection.

As of June 2013, “homosexual propaganda to minors” is prohibited, which means that any discussion of gay rights or homosexuality issues in the presence of minors is punishable by law.

While you walk around Saint Petersburg, you might encounter police officials that may demand to see your papers to check if you have been registered within 7 business days of your arrival into Saint Petersburg.

You shouldn’t have any problems with this, because if you stay in a hotel then you are automatically registered and will be handed a confirmation paper.

How Does Saint Petersburg Compare?

CitySafety Index
Saint Petersburg56
Nizhny Novgorod71
Siem Reap (Cambodia)63
Phnom Penh (Cambodia)61
Niagara Falls (Canada)87
Calgary (Canada)82
Buenos Aires (Argentina)60
Vancouver (Canada)82

Useful Information



Most countries do need a visa to enter Russia, and if you’re a U.S. citizen you must possess both a valid U.S. passport and a bona fide visa issued by a Russian Embassy or Consulate. None of the nationals that do need a visa can acquire one upon arrival, so make sure you apply for your visa in advance. 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.



Russian ruble is the official currency in Saint Petersburg. ATMs are widespread throughout the country and credit cards are accepted everywhere.



Saint Petersburg has a highly continental influenced climate characterized by warm to hot and dry summers and extremely cold, freezing winters with temperatures as low as -30°C – sometimes even lower, with heavy snowfall.



Pulkovo Airport is an international airport serving Saint Petersburg, Russia. It consists of one terminal, Terminal 1 which is located 23 km south of the city center.

Travel Insurance

Travel Insurance

Just like anywhere else, we advise getting travel insurance when traveling to Saint Petersburg, because it would cover not only medical problems but also theft and loss of valuables.

Click here to get an offer for travel insurance

Saint Petersburg Weather Averages (Temperatures)

Jan -7° C
Feb -6° C
Mar -2° C
Apr 5° C
May 11° C
Jun 16° C
Jul 19° C
Aug 17° C
Sep 12° C
Oct 6° C
Nov 0° C
Dec -4° C
Choose Temperature Unit

Average High/Low Temperature

Temperature / MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec

Russia - Safety by City

CitySafety Index
Nizhny Novgorod71
Saint Petersburg56

Where to Next?

5 Reviews on Saint Petersburg

  1. A
    Anonymous says:

    Took a package tour serveral years ago from Finland through St P and down to Moscow by train. Probably the entire contingent of older Canadian tourists experienced multiple pickpocket incidents, including on crowded Metro cars. One person was sandwiched between two people in a subway turnstile who discretely picked their pocket. Another had a daypack slashed with a razor. Any interesting road scam was when the chartered tour bus (with Finnish plates) was hit by a Russian driver. After police arrived, the hat was passed on the bus to pay the “fine” and settle up with police & driver.

  2. 5
    56? More like 86. says:

    St. Petersburg is one of the safest cities in Russia.

  3. I note the subtle anti Russia statements at the introduction..
    Russia’s security concerns are in fact genuine. NATO expansion eastward is seen by Russians as directed against their country. Putin has been clear for many years that if continued, the expansion would likely be met with serious resistance by the Russians, even with military action. The Ukraine military had killed almost 15000 Russian speaking Ukrainians in the east in the lead up to the invasion. No complaints from the west. The usa has been looking forward to this war and preparing Ukraine for many years to fight as their proxy. Problem is that the usa is losing and will ultimately lose. Yet again.

  4. Russia

    Street scams? I’m a Brit in Saint Petersburg, 12 years, and I’ve NEVER seen any street scams. Yes, there are pickpockets, but nothing like those in Italy or Spain. The above review about a bag being slashed sounds brutal and violent. The tactic is never confrontational and is just a way to enter your bag without you knowing. Again, it’s used in other European countries.

    My advice is simple – keep your passport etc. in your hotel room and take photos of your passport, visa, migration card and registration. Keep your wallet in a zipped pocket and remove it if you ever leave your coat. It’s common to hang up your coat etc. in cafes and bars, and common sense should tell you to remove valuables. I’m more cautious in the UK, to be honest.

    Guys, avoid girls who want to take you to a bar that seems empty but has a lot of staff. These girls are paid to bring you there, have a few drinks, then when you get the bill, drinks cost about £30 a piece. Only enter bars that have a lot of other people, a mixture of different people.

    I recommend that you download Yandex Go, a taxi app, and Yandex Maps, Yandex Metro, and Yandex Eda (food delivery).

    1. Hi Brit, what is it like right now (Feb 2023) for travel ? I want to visit for 4 days. Thanks

Saint Petersburg Rated 3.4 / 5 based on 5 user reviews.

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