Georgia : Safety by City
- East Columbus
- East Point
- Johns Creek
- Peachtree City
- Peachtree Corners
- Sandy Springs
- South Fulton
- Tybee Island
- Warner Robins
Chamblee, Georgia is the United Nations of Georgia with cultural diversity and a growing population adding more ethnic flavor to this already incredible foodie town.
You get the feel of city life here without being in the city center of Atlanta (which is just 13 miles away) and the city population has exploded three times over in the past decade.
There are now 30,000 people that call it home.
In 2010, there were less than 10,000 people.
This once industrial neighborhood is now a boutique community with an affinity for antiques, having the largest antique community in the South.
You can eat your way along Buford Highway and cover food types from almost every continent.
The Plaza Fiesta mall will make you swear you are in a Latin fiesta village and Chinatown will knock you off your pu pu platter.
This city was once a railroad town and transportation is still top-notch here, for better and for worse.
There’s a lot to talk about in regard to this diverse city, so let’s jump right in.
Warnings & Dangers in Chamblee
OVERALL RISK : LOW
Chamblee's police department doesn't make it easy to get official crime statistics. There aren't any numbers reported to the FBI since 2017 and the city doesn't provide its annual report. The numbers I can give you are compiled from a monthly crime report from March 2021 through March 2022. I'm going to go as far as to say there's a low risk here if you take with a grain of salt that this is an urban area where certain risks are just always going to be present.
TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : LOW
MARTA is the popular bus and rail service through the Atlanta region and there's a major stop in Chamblee. Fares are $2.50 one way and run from just before 5 am until 1 am. You can also easily call a taxi or rideshare here. There's a low risk, but keep your attention on your surroundings at the MARTA stops.
PICKPOCKETS RISK : MEDIUM
There's a medium risk here due to the number of people in town and the fast pace of this city. The chance of being a theft victim is one in 104, and that excludes shoplifting, car break-ins, and thefts, which we'll go through a little later.
NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : HIGH
This area is prone to thunderstorms which can be severe and tornado potential throughout the year with the highest-risk season being in the spring. You'll need a reliable weather app with notifications turned on to get watches and warnings as they are issued.
MUGGING RISK : LOW
There are more thefts than assaults, so there's a low risk of being mugged. There is still a chance, as any congested urban center would be - so don't let your guard down.
TERRORISM RISK : MEDIUM
There's a medium risk because of it being inside the 285 perimeters and close to downtown Atlanta. This area is also a major transportation hub, which ups the risk a little more.
SCAMS RISK : LOW
There are some pretty tough scams against locals and business owners, but none that impact a tourist. There is a potential for risk here, so if someone ever asks you to buy them gift cards for any reason or bullies you into donating money, it's likely a scam and you should report it to the police.
WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : LOW
Women should proceed with caution, just because of how busy this area is, but nothing in the crime numbers suggests anything but a low risk. Again, that has to come with the understanding that this is an urban area. If you are visiting from a small town, you'll think it has a higher risk. If you are coming from Chicago, you'd laugh at any risk here.
TAP WATER RISK : LOW
DeKalb County provides the tap water here and, according to its 2021 Annual Water Quality Report, there were no violations in the water tested. That means there's a low risk and the water meets all required standards.
Safest Places to Visit in Chamblee
The Antique Row District is one of the most popular places.
With the increase in people’s thrift shopping, this area is more popular than ever.
There are antique, second-hand, and consignment stores here with some restaurants to keep your energy levels up while you shop.
Grab some Gus’s Fried Chicken while you’re there.
Plaza Fiesta is an entire food court and shopping mall experience with a Latin theme.
The vibrant colors and musical selections are perfectly placed here in one of the most diverse Atlanta communities.
Cinco de Mayo and Halloween bring big festivals to the mall as well.
Buford Highway runs through Chamblee as well.
That road is known for its global cuisine and a wide variety of food items.
If you can plan the trip to coincide with Chamblee Restaurant Week, you’ll be so full you won’t need to eat for a week.
The DeKalb-Peachtree Airport is a busy place for private and chartered flights, but you can also purchase an aerial tour of the city in a bi-plane.
There are also sunset flights you can book if you want to surprise the special someone in your life.
Places to Avoid in Chamblee
The crime rates get higher the closer you get to downtown Atlanta.
There’s no neighborhood really off-limits here, but you might see more people you would consider sketchy or suspicious.
20% of the city does live in poverty, so you might see some panhandlers and get asked for money.
Remember when I said a transportation hub was for better or for worse?
The “worse” is the noise that comes from the airport, MARTA, or railroad lines that come through here.
When booking a hotel, look to see how close any of those are to your hotel.
Read reviews of the hotel to see if there are noise complaints.
Some people have said bringing a white noise machine helps block out the sound.
Safety Tips for Traveling to Chamblee
- Check the police department’s website for the “Monthly Department Update.” This boring title is actually a list of all the major crimes that happened in the area in comparison to the past 13 months.
- Download the MyChamblee mobile app so you can get a lay of the land before you go. You can get information about the newest places opening in the city and report any issues you come across, like potholes.
- The city also has a “citybot” to help answer your questions on the go. You just need to text the word “hello” to (470)450-2533 and ask your question. You should get a response quickly.
- “Alert DeKalb” is another app you’ll need to stay updated on severe weather emergencies in the area. You can download it from any app store. The weather here can change quickly, so you need to be notified while you’re visiting the city. Most of the attractions here require walking outside.
- You can buy your MARTA pass online before you go if you’d like, or you can purchase it on-site from the vending machines. It’s safer to buy ahead of time to avoid someone standing around you when you pull out your wallet. You just swipe your card in front of the blue target when you get on the bus or train. You can also buy passes by the day if you prefer. A three-day pass is $16.
- If you are renting a car or driving into Chamblee, be sure to lock up the car with the windows rolled up when you park. Take all valuables out as well. 237 car break-ins were reported in 2021 and 136 cars were stolen.
- Places in Atlanta are referred to in general as “inside the perimeter” or “outside the perimeter.” That means a city is either inside the I-285 loop or outside of it. Chamblee is ITP.
- There isn’t a community in the Atlanta metro area that doesn’t complain about traffic, and Chamblee is no different except the traffic is worse. You just need to be patient when visiting here and stay calm because there are some very aggressive drivers.
- You can report information about a crime to the police department through an app called “TipSubmit.” You are welcome to leave your contact information or stay anonymous. If you see a dangerous crime in progress, you should call 911 instead.
- Texting and driving is illegal in Georgia. You can only touch your phone or GPS when using it for directions. You can’t watch videos, check email, or scroll through social media, even when waiting in traffic.
So... How Safe Is Chamblee Really?
It’s an urban area that is going to come with a certain amount of crime.
The property and violent crimes are all well above the Georgia national average, but that is coming from data that is several years old.
The city’s website doesn’t give me enough crime information to do the math for 2021, but I can say it’s a city where you need to keep your wits about you.
Chamblee has quickly gone from an industrial park in the early 00s to a fast-growing cultural melting pot of activity.
You will love the vibe of the city, but there’s going to be more crime risk that comes when a city triples its population in a decade.
If you are looking for a quiet getaway from the city during your visit, this isn’t the place.
It’s going to be active around the clock with train and airplane noise.
There are a lot of festivals held here, which means more people, more crime risks, and more fun – but also more noise.
How Does Chamblee Compare?
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- Visas - Your Visa will only get checked when you enter the United States. You'll need to bring your passport as well. After arriving, you don't need to show your Visa as you visit Chamblee or the Atlanta area.
- Currency - The U.S. Dollar here is the only option. Yes, even at Plaza Fiesta. You can use credit card purchases and should avoid carrying around a lot of cash.
- Weather - You can be sure the summer will be very humid, so wear comfortable clothing and just accept that you'll sweat in it. If you like to hand wash clothes when you travel, it takes a long time for clothes to air dry in the humidity. In the winter and spring, you should bring layers because the temperatures can change dramatically throughout the day.
- Airports - Unless you are chartering a flight or have a private jet, you won't be able to fly out of DeKalb-Peachtree Airport in Chamblee. You'll need to use Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, about 25 miles away. That trip does take you through the heart of downtown Atlanta and all the traffic that comes with it, so plan for that trip to take an hour.
- Travel Insurance - You can't control travel delays or cancellations, but you can control how you protect yourself from them. Travel insurance is a great idea for a trip to Chamblee, Georgia.
Chamblee Weather Averages (Temperatures)
Average High/Low Temperature
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