Belgrade is the perfect destination for tourists that are already tired of exploring the big capitals of Europe or the beaches of Greece and Turkey, and are yearning to visit and see the unexplored parts of Europe.
Belgrade is the reason why the tourist flow has considerably increased in Serbia during the past decades, since its night life and extremely friendly people are so welcoming and off beat, that more and more tourists come to Serbia every year, especially during the summer months.
Of course, the political situation had a lot to do with the increase of tourists, since it has finally settled after many, many years of war.
Belgrade has always been a kind of an unknown surprise, even for people living in Europe, and they are always surprised, rightly so, at how welcoming the residents of Belgrade.
It is a cradle of many cultures and has a heavy load of history, which makes it a real gem for any tourist. And since its people are so warm – this country is considered to be very much safe.
Warnings & Dangers in Belgrade
OVERALL RISK : LOW
Belgrade is generally very safe. Its people are very kind and happy to help, and tourists especially shouldn't encounter any bigger problems in Belgrade. However, like in any other capital, it couldn't hurt to be extra cautious.
TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : LOW
Transportation in Serbia is overall safe. Just be on the lookout for pickpockets on public transportation, and double-check if the taximeter is on when you enter a taxi.
PICKPOCKETS RISK : HIGH
Pick-pocketing and bag snatching are the most common form of street crime in Belgrade, so if you do encounter any problems it will probably be pick-pocketing that mostly happens in public transportation. Be extremely careful when entering any bus in Serbia's capital, since its pick-pockets are very skillful and you won't even notice anything missing until you get off the bus.
NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : LOW
In the past couple of years, the only natural disaster that severely affected Belgrade and especially its surroundings was flooding of large proportions, with even fatal results.
MUGGING RISK : MEDIUM
Mugging exists, but is rare. There have been reports of kidnapping either as a consequence of someone failing to pay a debt, or kidnapping by rival criminal organizations. Crimes like these do happen, but have declined in the last decade significantly, and are not likely to happen to a tourist.
TERRORISM RISK : LOW
Terrorist attacks are more likely to happen in most popular European capitals such as Paris, London etc., than in Belgrade. There is a risk of a terrorist attack happening but it is really low.
SCAMS RISK : MEDIUM
Any newcomer is in danger of scams when visiting a new Belgrade and the same applies to Belgrade. The most common scams are people ripping you off in bars or clubs, or by the street vendors, as well as drink spiking in strip clubs.
WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : LOW
Belgrade is very safe for women travelers. Attacks rarely happen, if ever, but still, be on the lookout at all times, especially at night, or in deserted areas, empty, poorly lit streets, etc.
So... How Safe Is Belgrade Really?
Even though the main concern for visitors is pick-pocketing, it should be noted that crime rate in Belgrade can be considered high is some sense, due to the activity of organized crime groups, constantly fighting over prominent areas, and their conflicts often end in violence.
As for its nightlife, which is highly popular in Belgrade, it is filled with clubs, bars and places called “splavovi” (meaning, basically, a club floating on water) that are open until early morning.
However, these floating clubs are generally owned by the Balkan criminal organizations and if any confrontation happens there, it usually also ends in violence, so although these places might be very attractive for newcomers, it may be best to avoid them.
Serbian people are very involved in sports, and are usually ardent fans of one of two most popular rival clubs: Red Star or Partizan.
Visiting their games could be potentially dangerous for tourists (and not only for tourists), since there have been cases of foreigners being attacked by the fans of these clubs, in Belgrade known as “hooligans”.
When it comes to street crime, the most dangerous thing that can happen to you is pickpocketing, usually in public transportation, crowded places such as bus stations in the city (the most popular city bus station Zeleni Venac is notorious for pick-pocketers) and the main pedestrian street in Belgrade – Knez Mihailova.
- Visas - Visa is not required for any stays shorter than 90 days. Be sure that your passport is valid for at least six months from your planned date of return to the country you're visiting. However, if you are not sure about your visa status, visit www.doyouneedvisa.com which will let you know whether or not you need visa based on your nationality and the country you want to visit.
- Currency - Serbian Dinar (RSD) is the currency in Belgrade. Do avoid street money changers and exchange your money at official exchange offices and you'll find the best rate in the National Bank of Serbia. You can also withdraw RSD at a local ATM.
- Weather - Belgrade is known to have very hot summers (reaching up to 40℃) and very cold winters (reaching as low as -15℃). Serbian climate is considered to be mild.
- Airports - The busiest airport in Serbia is in Belgrade, Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport (BEG). It is located about 25 km northwest from the center of Belgrade.
- Travel Insurance - Just like anywhere else, we recommend getting travel insurance when traveling to Belgrade, since it covers not only medical problems, but also theft and loss of valuables.