How Safe Is Chicago for Travel?

Chicago, United States
Safety Index:
65

Chicago is a huge city with a population of over 2.7 million people.

Chicago was founded in 1837 by land speculators John Kinzie and Jean-Baptiste Pointe du Sable and incorporated as a city in 1837.

It became the most populous city in the United States in 1920.

It is the third most populous city in the United States.

Chicago is known for its architecture, its food, and its culture.

The city is famous for its deep-dish pizza, Chicago-style hot dogs, and Italian beef.

These foods are considered staples of the Chicago culinary scene today.

It is a popular tourist destination, with attractions including Wrigley Field, Navy Pier, North Michigan Avenue shopping district, and the Willis Tower.

According to 2021 statistics, Chicago has a population density of 11,953 people per square mile (4,622/square kilometer), ranking it one in terms of city population density in the United States.

Famous people from the “Windy City” include Barack Obama, Michael Jordan, Oprah Winfrey, and Walt Disney.

Chicago got its nickname from a New York newspaper known as the Daily Chicago Times.

It made fun of the Chicago winds back in 1857 and the name stuck!

Warnings & Dangers in Chicago

Overall Risk

OVERALL RISK : MEDIUM

Chicago is generally safe for tourists, though some neighborhoods are best avoided. Avoid sketchy neighborhoods known for gang and similar criminal activities and take normal precaution measures.

Transport & Taxis Risk

TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : MEDIUM

Today in Chicago, taxi and Uber drivers tend to be the victims of crime as opposed to passengers. Drivers often deal with cash robberies or attempted carjackings. Be aware of thieves on buses and trains, but you should be okay as long as you don't flash cash and expensive electronics. Try to avoid public transportation late at night - use Uber and verify the driver.

Pickpockets Risk

PICKPOCKETS RISK : HIGH

Several reports still cite pickpocketing as a major issue to worry about when walking around Chicago. Chicago can be a crowded city, so when you are in a large group of people, be aware of your valuables and your surroundings. When you're riding public transportation, there's also a huge risk for pickpocketing as well. If you are a man don't put your wallet in your back pocket. Women may want to invest in a travel safe purse that can snugly sling over the body.

Natural Disasters Risk

NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : LOW

Chicago’s geographic location makes it highly unlikely to be prone to major natural disasters. Earthquakes, hurricanes, tsunamis, and droughts are usually not something you will see on a weather forecast in the Windy City. As a matter of fact, the state of Illinois is ranked as the third least likely state to experience a natural disaster in the United States. The top two unlikely states for natural disasters, Michigan and Minnesota, are also in the Midwest.

Mugging Risk

MUGGING RISK : HIGH

In terms of crime, Chicago is rated only 8% safer than other US cities. 1 out of 105 people is likely to become a victim of violent crime in Chicago. The further south or west you go, you are more likely to become a target of mugging. However, within the past couple of years, muggings and robberies have also gone up in more affluent areas that criminals are driving to.

Terrorism Risk

TERRORISM RISK : MEDIUM

Chicago is a major city and an international hub for transport. While there have not been any specific known international terrorist threats in recent years, the Chicago Sears Tower was later confirmed as a target during the 9/11 attacks in 2001. On a domestic level, any place in the United States can be a target for local terrorist uprisings - Chicago is no exception.

Scams Risk

SCAMS RISK : MEDIUM

Most tourists can be safe in Chicago as long as they are aware of their surroundings. Unfortunately, a tourist in Chicago has to look out for certain scams such as fake taxis, people selling hot items, money scams, and even fake monks. The illegal taxis will often charge insane prices and target people arriving at the airport.

Women Travelers Risk

WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : MEDIUM

Any tourist can be at risk, regardless of gender, if they are not aware of their surroundings. A female tourist in Chicago can enjoy the city and remain relatively safe, as long as she sticks to tourist areas. It is best for women, in particular, to avoid public transportation or walking alone at night. While certain crimes have remained steady or increased ( like robberies), the number of rapes in the city actually went down by 24% from 2019 to 2020.

Tap Water Risk

TAP WATER RISK : HIGH

Unfortunately, Chicago tap water does have high concentrations of lead. A study in 2018 concluded that 30% of Chicago homes had lead in the faucet water. Chromium-6 is a carcinogen that has been found in Chicago's drinking water in 10 times the standard amount. The drinking water also contains haloacetic acids, which can increase the risk of cancer and cause issues such as mutations or DNA damage during pregnancy.

Safest Places to Visit in Chicago

The safest places to visit in Chicago include Navy Pier, the Downtown Loop, and Lincoln Park.

The Pier is an interesting place to visit and explore, especially for those that love boats and the waterfront.

This place has many food options to choose from, as well as games and other activities.

Tourists and locals alike enjoy the downtown loop, which is a great place to take a walk or go for a run.

Lincoln Park is a great place to rub elbows with financial brokers and area college students.

The architecture and history are fascinating and there are many shops and restaurants to explore here as well.

Millennium Park is also a popular tourist destination, thanks to the iconic Bean sculpture and other attractions.

It is safe to visit during the day or night, and there are plenty of great food options nearby, making it one of the safest places to visit in Chicago.

Placess to Avoid in Chicago

There are a few places that are considered dangerous when going out or just visiting around town.

The south side is one of the most dangerous areas in Chicago.

There are high crime rates and a lot of violence here, so it is best to avoid this area if possible.

West Garfield Park is the most dangerous neighborhood in the city due to a 1 in 20 chance of being a victim of a violent crime.

The west side also has a higher than average crime rate, so it is another place to avoid.

Another area to be aware of is the downtown loop after dark.

Any area in the city can see more crime at night, so it is best to take a taxi or Uber if you’re going to be out late.

Safety Tips for Traveling to Chicago

  1. Explore the city during the day and early evening – The crime rate is much higher at night, so it is best to explore the city during the day and early evening.
  2. Watch your belongings while on public transportation or in crowded areas – When you are at Navy Pier or Millennium Park, make sure to keep an eye on your valuables and don’t leave your things unattended for too long.
  3. Call an Uber or Lyft if you plan to stay out after 8 p.m. If you’re planning on staying out late, make sure you call a ride service beforehand and keep your phone close to avoid any issues with pickpocketing.
  4. Watch for uneven sidewalks and curbs – The curbs in downtown Chicago can be very high, so it’s important to watch your step while walking down the street. Also, watch for uneven sidewalks and avoid walking in dark alleys or streets unless you are in a well-lit area.
  5. Try to avoid the south side and west side neighborhoods due to gangs. During the day, these areas may be fine for travelers but it is still important to watch your belongings at all times.
  6. Protect yourself from pickpocketing. Stash cash and cards in different places and use an RFID blocking wallet. Don’t flash your expensive phone out in public.
  7. Avoid walking alone at night. If you do need to walk alone at night, make sure that you are walking on sidewalks with street lamps or other well-lit areas with people around you. If possible avoid walking in dark alleys or streets where there are not many people around.
  8. Don’t leave any valuables in plain sight in parked cars. If you are going to leave anything in the car, it is best to put it in the trunk.
  9. Don’t let your guard down just because it is daylight, you are in an affluent area, or are in a very touristy part of the city. Criminals can travel by car or public transportation and target victims – especially if they are not paying attention.
  10. Join a group tour – a great way to stay safe while exploring a new city like Chicago. Not only will you have someone to watch your back, but you’ll also learn a lot about the city and its history.

So... How Safe Is Chicago Really?

While you are certainly safe from natural disasters, and New York City-level terror threats, unfortunately, gang members and other criminals are another issue.

Gun violence has increased by 15% since last year.

Chicago can be safe if you stick to most touristy areas while being leery of crowds.

However, crime has traveled to more affluent areas in the last couple of years, so one must always be careful.

Chicago seems like a place where people may have to practice some extra precautions to avoid being robbed or scammed by others.

If you drive for a rideshare service or a taxi, you may be a moving target, as well as a pedestrian with an iPhone in their hand.

How Does Chicago Compare?

CitySafety Index
Chicago65
New Orleans57
Baltimore56
Boston67
Washington DC56
Niagara Falls (Canada)87
Calgary (Canada)82
Buenos Aires (Argentina)60

Useful Information

  • Visas - If you need to get a visa to travel to Chicago, most tourist visas for the United States will cost $160. If you are already in Chicago and you need a visa for a different country, check with the specific consulate of the country you plan to go to. Most of Chicago's consulates are located in the downtown Loop, Millennium Park, and River North.
  • Currency - Chicago is in the United States, so the standard currency is the US dollar. The city is a financial hub, so there are plenty of banks spotted throughout the city for you to do a currency exchange or get cash from an ATM. When you fly into Chicago O'Hare Airport, you can also exchange currency in every terminal.
  • Weather - Chicago is known as the windy city for a good reason. Winters here can be very harsh and cold with a strong wind chill factor. If you come during winter, make sure you have boots, sweaters, warm pants, jeans, a winter hat, and scarves. Prepare for autumn rain and pack a light rain jacket. If you plan to partake in any of the city’s robust fine dining, such as their famous steak houses, be aware of the appropriate attire. Upscale area restaurants often have dress codes.
  • Airports - Chicago O'Hare International Airport is one of the busiest airports in the world, while Midway International Airport is a smaller airport with one primary terminal.
  • Travel Insurance - When visiting Chicago, it is a good idea to get some type of travel insurance and health insurance. In the event of pickpocketing or other theft, property insurance will be useful to have to replace anything that might get stolen or damaged.
Click here to get an offer for travel insurance

Chicago Weather Averages (Temperatures)

Jan -4° C
Feb -1° C
Mar 4° C
Apr 10° C
May 16° C
Jun 21° C
Jul 25° C
Aug 24° C
Sep 20° C
Oct 14° C
Nov 7° C
Dec 0° C
Choose Temperature Unit

Average High/Low Temperature

Temperature / MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
High
°C
-12713192528272317103
Low
°C
-6-4161217212117104-3
High
°F
303645556677828173635037
Low
°F
212534435463707063503927

Where to Next?

70 Reviews on Chicago

  1. S
    Shanika says:

    Terror on the nearNorth side

    There is plenty of violent crime in Chicago ‘s near north side too.

    This week alone 7 women were shot at Fullerton Beach !

    Bicyclists shoot random pedestrians, ladies are raped in the morning as they leave for work .

    Men , even big guys , are severely beat up in cell phone thefts!

    While the excellent Chicago cops are busy patrolling the South and West side, there are few police left to protect in the Near North side.

    Near Northsiders are targets in a crime infested shooting gallery !

    1. Nonsense

      This is amusing, but basically pure fantasy.

      1. Rebutting the "Amusing"

        So why are there police reports indicating such. I am sure its a beautiful city, and great for people who live there, but just last night saw where a man, around the LOOP area was beaten up pretty bad/mugged. Others shot around Lincoln Part and just other random shootings. I am sure its like most big cities, but crime itself has gotten out of hand.

    2. This review is not true at all

      This review is ridiculous. I live downtown and have for many years.

      1. J
        Joseph K says:

        Be serious.

        Are you kidding me? Chicago’s crime hasn’t been kept to the South and West sides for a long time. The North Side may be “more safe” than parts of the South and West, but I don’t think it’s appropriate to tell people that they’re OK on the North Side, that’s ridiculous.

        1. Gangs r running Chicago

          100 % agree I live on the most north eastern edge of “Chicago” and there are shootings, robberies and rape here alive and well

          1. L
            Left Chicago.. taxes/crime too high says:

            You are correct…. Rogers Park, a once quiet neighborhood home to Loyola University and older Jewish residents is now full of gang activity.

      2. Chicago cesspool

        Yeah, and you don’t go out at night. Property values have dropped 50 percent and no ones buying. The Mayor lightfoot is a true idiot.

        1. W
          William says:

          Zero stars avoid

          Light foot is an asshole and won’t support her own police. Like every other major us city run by Democrats Chicago has gone to hell. Lived there for 25 years. Won’t even drive through anymore without being armed

      3. T
        Think twice before visiting says:

        Agreed. Chicago has become scary during the day as well as night. Public transport is not safe either. No neighborhood has been spared of violent crime in 2020 and 2021. So sad.

      4. As someone who’s never lived in Chicago I can confirm.

    3. G
      Gabriel Mejia says:

      Pure comedy

      This is hilarious. Grew up in the area and have lived and taught in the city proper for 17 years. I’ve never known anyone who was pickpocketed.
      Stay away from the West Side past Humboldt Park if you don’t know where you’re going. Everything else is fine. Yes, even the South Side. Like anywhere, just don’t be stupid or aggressive.

      1. Lovely city

        I live in River North: safe and close to downtown
        Of course, at night always best to be cautious !

  2. Danger day or night

    Day or night .Very very very dangerous on th Near North side .

  3. Stay away please

    Stay away it’s so dangerous on the near north side, I got a gun permit and a vest I’m not messing around anymore

    1. Bulletproof vest required

      Exactly mike has the right idea

  4. a
    angela woollen says:

    Is the observation building n looking at the Christmas tree lights dangerous

  5. Back of the Yards Revival.

    The Back of the Yards area is really getting nice. There are some great bars and restaurants in the area now. I never felt in danger at all and never saw even a hint of anything sketchy. Even there several times last summer and fall. Use Uber or Lift for transportation.

    1. J
      Joy Scott says:

      Is this Pisner area (Thalia hall) safe?

      1. G
        Gabriel Mejia says:

        You mean Pilsen. Yes it’s very safe these days near Thalia Hall and there are excellent bars and restaurants all around. Get there early and check out the National Museum of Mexican Art nearby.

  6. Don’t believe this rating

    I live in Chicago. This rating is hilarious. Yes, there are unsafe neighborhoods in Chicago- like any other city. However, I feel very safe in any of the neighborhoods that tourist would want to visit

    1. A
      Anonymous says:

      Which neighborhoods

      1. some good places are gold coast and edgewater

    2. B
      Bob Jones says:

      Enjoying Chicago

      Most of the crime in Chicago is gang related. However, innocent parties can be victims as well. Clearly, certain areas should be avoided,but downtown and the magnificent mile area are reasonably safe. The thing to remember is that you are in a major metropolitan area, and you should always be mindful of your surroundings. I wouldn’t say that you should keep your head on a swivel, but stay alert, avoid night travel and isolated areas. If you see something suspicious, get away from it as quickly as possible and if necessary, report it to a police officer.

  7. Chicago is not Safe

    I love Chicago and have spent months and month working there. I even met my current wife there and we’d love to go back for a visit but it is just too dangerous. There are 100 of people being shot every month and rioting. We are both sadden by it decline, but Chicago is no longer a safe place any more.

    1. A
      Anonymous says:

      In 2020, Stay Away!

      Unsafe

      1. M
        Mutual Combat says:

        Where can I watch “ Mutual Combat” gun fights?
        According the the State Attorney it’s legal in Chicago.

  8. A
    Anonymous says:

    What should I do, if I just rent a car from the airport

    1. Chicago, a Sheet hole

      Born and raised in Chicago and still live in a western suburb. I travel downtown every day. Stay in any western suburb of Chicago thats at least 20 miles from the City. No problems. The south and west sides of Chicago are where most of the crime is and they are 99.9 percent Black. The downtown and north side, gold coast gets bad at night because kids come from the South and west sides to prey on people. They figured out there is more opportunity there to commit profitable crime than on the south and west sides. This post will be regarded as racist, but it is just stating fact. Take it any way you want, ignore it and get mugged, robbed, carjacked or shot.

  9. A
    Anonymous says:

    Lived in the city most of my life. It is not the same city now. I was robbed by 4 teens in hoodies at gun point in Lincoln Park, my granddaughter was robbed at an ATM in Logan Sauare. Mag Mile looted 2x is still boarded up, number of stores are not coming back. No Chicago is not the same and the mayor dosen’t care, it’s all political for her.

  10. S
    Southsider says:

    Chicago crime.

    This shit isn’t completely accurate. I’m a white male that’s spent his whole life on the south side of the city. Yes the south side is dangerous and majority of major crime happens there. And also the west side. But there’s crime no matter what side of the city your on.
    I’ve driven through,walked through (day/night) and have stopped and ate in every neighborhood around the south side and haven’t had any problems whatsoever.
    Just like anywhere else in every city it’s how you carry yourself. Obviously if your some easy looking mark that stands out like they def don’t belong and doesn’t Look like their going to put up much of a fight and basically gonna be an easy pay day well sorry to say your chances of being robbed is a lot higher. But that’s anywhere in this country.
    And gang wise in my experience if your in the neighborhoods (south side for example) and u don’t look like your a part of the gangculture or look like your a member of a gang then u don’t get bothered with It’s all how you carry yourself. AND WITH THE SOUTH SIDE IF YOU GIVE RESPECT YOU’LL GET RESPECT PLAIN AN SIMPLE

    1. L
      Lifelong Chicagoan says:

      I mostly agree with you, Southsider, but I say it entirely depends on the neighborhood and time of day. I’ve been around different parts of the south and west sides, and some places I would go in the daytime but not at night. Some areas get rough late at night and fighting does break out, so I wouldn’t recommend inner city areas to tourists because one does not want to get caught in the middle of anything.
      As for the mugging issue, it happens sometimes, but I don’t think it’s a big issue like the author of this posts presents it. I think tourists need to just be smart, don’t try to display valuables and not wander around deserted parts of the city late.

    2. A
      Anonymous says:

      You may have become accustomed to the criminal acrtivity, but no, that is not true anywhere in this country.

      1. I agree. Chicago was safe when I was growing up. Since when is crime acceptable – if it’s similar to other crime ridden areas? Our standards have tanked. Shame on us.

  11. CHICAGOISAFE

    I WIIL GO TO CHIGAGO,NOT LISTENING TO THIS DUMBY

  12. K
    Katwichdu says:

    Chicago

    I said its medium. I’d maybe go to Chicago, Its a big city.+ WHO SAID THERE IS TERRORISM IN CHICAGO??? Absolutely no

  13. Chicago is very safe

    All of these people saying the North Side is dangerous are completely out of their minds. I have lived in Chicago for 5 years and it is a beautiful and safe city with plenty of amazing things to do and see. Go to the beach, walk along the Mag Mile, rent a boat or a bike and cruise along the Riverwalk. There are some very affluent neighborhoods in Chicago, gorgeous 3 flats, large homes in the Gold Coast and Lincoln Park, amazing restaurants. The areas that are considered dangerous are miles away from any neighborhood a tourist would visit, and the crime stays very confined to those areas. I suspect many of these reviews are from people who have a personal vendetta against the city or who have not actually been to the city. At most, there is petty crime in the touristy areas, like literally every other major city. Come visit Chicago, and you will see what a beautiful and safe place it really is.

    1. Is it safe now in july 2021. We will be staying in a chicago downtown hotel in streeterville for just two nights..

    2. L
      Lifelong Chicagoan says:

      I have lived in Chicago for over 50 years. I say how safe Chicago is depends on where you go, what time of day, and if you are in a group or alone. Part of what you say is true, Mariam, but I want to add that people should just be prudent, stick around the tourist areas and north side and be careful where they go when it’s late. I suggest asking a concierge or Chicagoan for advice when they come. The review about a pickpocket problem, and how the public transportation is dangerous is ridiculous. I haven’t had pickpocket problems, but I also don’t go displaying my money or my smartphone. And you can go on most bus routes or trains at day hours, but I don’t recommend the Red Line at night or any deserted area. Some things changed since 2020. People mostly need to use common sense when visiting Chicago.

  14. Don’t be put off

    I’ve been twice and loved the city so much I committed to visiting at least once a year.

    I felt perfectly safe at all times but bear in mind I’ve only been in the north and near west side. Downtown was the cleanest city I’ve ever known.

    Buses and the L were brilliant. Never bothered with taxis or Ubers.

    Common sense and precautions are advised when visiting, but the same can be said for anywhere.

  15. Uncontrolled violence

    Murder, robbery and rape are alive and well all days of the week north East Chicago.

    It’s like the purge here at night

  16. This is not a vacation spot.

    Every night in Chicago is like the purge not isolated to the south west sides anymore. Do not walk around at night! Big stupid.

  17. A
    Anonymous says:

    AHHHHHHH TO MUCH MAFIA

  18. R
    Rachael says:

    Every night like the purge?! Are you kidding? I lived there for two years and it is way safer than the right-wing media would have you believe. They just hate black people, they associate them with violent crime, ergo in the ancient, shriveled white male mind of Fox News, anywhere with a lot of black people is a nightmarish crime pit.

    Not true at all! I really love to visit because of the great shopping, friendly atmosphere, liveliness, and lots of great vegan places where you can get stuff you can’t get in central Illinois, where I live. I loved living here. There weren’t roving gangs of thieves on transport at night – there are mentally ill homeless people who jabber incoherently about the lizard people or whatever, people begging, some sincerely in need, others not so much, and intoxicated people.

    On St. Patrick’s day or after a Cub’s game, expect transportation to be clogged with rowdy drunk white tourists, who were much more of a nuisance to me than any local residents! The city lost its goddamned mind in 2016 when the Cubs won the World Series. Took about a week for it to regain sanity and order. But normally, life here is just boring and filled with the usual stuff you expect from any major big city in the Midwestern United States.

    Just don’t wander too far south at night, I guess? I don’t even know if the south side is as bad as they say it is. I don’t have a ton of experience with it, but I have been around the White Sox’s stadium and that area might be called “south side” and it was fine to me? I’ve been on shopping trips all over the city. If you go shopping in poorer neighborhoods you can save money.

    Public transit and biking are great and cheap options. Downtown they even have rental bikes you get from a kiosk. I rode one such bike alongside the lake shore one summer – highly recommend the experience. You should check out the Field Museum, Harold Washington Library, the Sears (now called Willis officially, but not by Chicagoans) tower, the Hancock tower which is also called Chicago 360 (because you can walk around and get a 360 view of the city from the top of the 100-story tower), the Art Institute museum, Maggie Daley Park, Grant & Millenium parks near it, the lake shore area in general in the summer, take an architectural tour by boat or bus, eat authentic Chicago heart attack food, get a souvenir at the world’s fanciest Walgreen’s on Michigan Avenue, which is also a great place to look at clothes that are too expensive to actually buy, you can take carriage rides near the Water Tower place mall near Hancock, Water Tower place being a neat little skyscraper with a mall inside that features American Girl and Lego stores and as such is a great place for kids, but the sports bar on the 7th floor is a good place for dads.

    There’s just so much to do and see that is positive that I wish everyone could experience, without being put off by inconceivable, exaggerated tall tales reporters have made up about this place. Peace.

    1. T
      The oracle says:

      Don’t be stupid

      Those were the good old days. I live in the Gold Coast … don’t wear anything gold there anymore.. not worth your life. This lady is a moron…how about this ppl…look at the crime stats and decide who is telling the truth..this moron who lived here for 2 years in 2016 before the world lost its mind.. or the data that shows killings and shootings are out of control.. or how about this…google it and watch the crimes that are blatant in broad daylight.. you’ve been warned.. instead of vacationing here.. rent a cabin and canoe with your family and then watch amovie that’s been filmed here… and it’s too bad.. chitown was awesome… best city in the country.

    2. a
      anonymous says:

      by far african neighbourhoods are bad in Chicago

      FALSE! the areas where the majority racial population is black are by far the WORST in the city! the most crime riddled areas by far folks. I’m a hispanic/white (not mestizo) I know how this city really is like it’s becoming worse and worse by each and every day.

    3. Unsafe

      You are so misinformed. Right wing media? You mean left. Also wether you want to believe or not Chicago worst places are mostly black. Not saying that all neighborhoods with black people in this country are as bad as the ones here but it’s a war zone out here. Many shootings and raping. There is a reason why so many people trying to speak out on black vs black crime including black people.

    4. Loved Rachael’s review! She really captured the essence of Chicago.
      It’s important to employ both common sense and “street” sense when walking around or using public transport in any urban area. Chicago is an amazing city…comparable to others of similar size when it comes to safety. Every city has some areas that are less safe than others.

    5. A
      Anonymous says:

      Not safe to visit

      Raechel’s comment purposely puts potential visitors in harm’s way. Saying public transit is a “great option” is a dangerous comment, as visitors are being attacked on both the CTA trains and platforms even during daylight hours throughout the system.

      Random street crime is a common occurrence in the “upscale” Gold Coast, River North, and Streeterville neighborhoods, as South and West Side gangs know that they will not be prosecuted for violent crimes. Carjackings, while a problem in all big Democrat-run cities, are particularly common in Chicago, again at all hours of the day and in the nicer areas. My wife and I left and sold our condo on East Delaware Street, as we no longer felt safe walking the neighborhood, and we are in our early 50s.

  19. C
    ClaireM says:

    Unsafe in any area

    Grew up in Logan Square (before it was a yuppie wonderland) and lived there the first 35 years of my life. Moved away for 30 years, career e.t.c, and wanted to come back. No way that’s happening now. High taxes, high crime everywhere, and lots of hate between every racial and ethnic group. Police don’t control the streets anymore, gangs and criminals do. Very sad, I loved the city.

  20. E
    Estrella says:

    That's life

    There is crime everywhere, my advice is don’t carry a purse, don’t get lost in your cell phone 100% look around, and always be ready to call 911 at any given moment. Know where your emergency button is but also set up your phone for an emergency by pressing the power button 3 times or however your phone does it.

    Kids nowadays don’t look around, don’t communicate well with their parents so when they go missing or need help parents can’t even guess where to check first.

    Just know dressing to impress and be very fancy will make a thief think you have $ even if you don’t. Avoid porting too much information on social media, believe me, there are people following right now as you walk, look around as you read this article.

    Don’t live scared but be cautious and learn self-defense most important join a track team to run if need to.

    Remember if you wear heels to a party, always have a pair of comfortable shoes in case you have to walk back home. Anyway, I feel like a mother giving advice LOL just avoid, South Side Chicago, North Chicago, Waukegan, zion, etc at all times, and to all cities avoid walking at night either by yourself or someone else it doesn’t matter. ✌️

  21. P
    Patrick O'Connell says:

    Chicago is not as bad as you think

    I have visited many cities, and many places in my lifetime. I would have to say Chicago is the best, if not one of the best cities I have ever visited.

    Between the food, architecture, beach, walking tours, and other things to do. There is never a shortage of fun or adventure in this city. With this being said, we do need to address the crime. In my experience, I have had good luck being downtown, the north side, and the surrounding areas.

    Although these areas are safer, still take normal safety precautions. Lock car doors, hide valuables in your car and keep your belongings close to you.

    I personally have never felt unsafe walking around at night downtown, or the surrounding areas with friends, or family, but like any other city of its size; always take normal safety precautions. Stay out of dangerous neighborhoods (IE: Englewood, South Shore, Little Village, North Lawndale, etc.).

    Don’t instigate the homeless people either. Most of them are drug addicts and just want money, it is best to not instigate on their business and have the potential to be attacked. Although I have never personally had any issues with crime in the city, that doesn’t mean it can’t happen to you. Although the right-wing media will have you believe Chicago is an evil city, it is not.

    Essentially, if you mind your own business, and do not instigate others’ business, you should be fine.

    Other than that, here is the fun stuff. Things to check out: tourists definitely need to see the field museum, Shedd Aquarium, Cloud gate, The Sears Tower, and go shopping down the magnificent mile. There is so much more than that, but I think those things are a good place to start your adventure.

    Another cool thing to check out is China Town. China Town has a lot of good restaurants and cool little shops to check out. If you’re hungry in the downtown area, Miller’s Pub is definitely a good place to eat.

    The food is fantastic and the service was amazing. Even though the right-wing media will lead you to believe Chicago is dangerous and scary, it’s really not. If you decide to take a trip, it will be one that you won’t forget.

  22. I will take the bypass

    I read all of the reviews. I’m not from Chicago. But when I see a medium rating that means do not go there. From the national news, crime in Chicago seems to be getting worse. There are so many other places to see, why take the risk?

  23. Dangerous Democrat controlled

    Not safe! People from the rest of Illinois won’t go towards Chicago anymore. It’s very dangerous and you are taking a chance with your life walking around Chicago. Rape , home invasions, murder , gangs and shootings, looting and protests with crime.

  24. C
    Chris "Money" Brandon says:

    I was born in Chicago

    I was born in Chicago. Raised on 134 west LaSalle in Roseland from 84 to 92. I never got shot, beat up, robbed, or anything. Probably because I’m super aware of my surroundings and I respect everybody and I mind my own business!

    Curtis school 85 to 92.

  25. Wrong turn scared

    Driving home from Indiana to Chicago I took a wrong turn and ended up in a bad part of Chicago by the subway I never been so scaredy in all my life never again!!!’

  26. hispanicks and whites are part of the problem too

  27. J
    Jessica says:

    Reputations are for a reason

    Sadly, jJust the fact that this is a full on discussion lets me know it is not worth my safety to visit!

  28. This comment section is absolute lunacy.
    If you haven’t been to Chicago yet, go. It’s the absolute greatest downtown in America. Architectural beauty, incredible parks, a beautiful riverwalk and lakefront path, incredible sports environments (Cubs, Hawks, Bulls, Sox, all of it), some phenomenal historic music venues, museums, and bars. Take the architectural boat tour, go eat a Chicago Dog or Italian Beef, check out the amazing Art Institute, grab a cocktail at the Green Mill or Kingston Mines.

    Chicago, like most big cities in America, grapples with crime. Unfortunately, it follows the same trend as the country where it has gotten worse after 2020. There are indeed still “bad neighborhoods” as everyone mentioned above and crime can absolutely happen anywhere. But to say it regularly happens is false. 3 million people live & go about their day every single day here. Keep aware of your surroundings at night, take an Uber or taxi if you aren’t familiar with where you are going and you’ll be fine. Enjoy one of the greatest cities in America.

  29. As safe as any major city

    This review is sort of silly. Any major city of Chicago’s size is going to have good parts and bad parts, but for tourists visiting The Loop and Streeterville and those areas, you only need to exercise basic common sense and you will be fine. I lived in the West Loop and worked downtown by Millennium Park and, as a woman, I walked home from work every night after dark without fear. I had many out-of-town guests visit me and we walked the Magnificent Mile and took boat rides through the city and it was always a fantastic time.

    Just because you hear about gang shootings on the news doesn’t make Chicago an unsafe city – these are shootings in parts of the city you will never visit and targeted at specific people, not random tourists. Chicago is a huge city, and every city has more crime in certain areas. But if you want to visit Chicago and aren’t an idiot, you will avoid bad areas and have a great time.

    1. A
      A thirty-year former resident says:

      Katie, you must work for the Chicago Chamber of Commerce. Millennium Park is not safe. On the afternoon and evening of 12/4/21, bands of “youths” terrorized and attacked people in the park and the Loop. This occurs frequently. We lived on East Randolph and moved away five months ago because of the rampant crime and violence, even in the “good areas.”

      1. N
        Northsider b4 it became all white says:

        Segregation & disinvestment

        Hope all the gentrified residents leave so investment of South and West neighborhoods can happen. As long as funding stays only North there will be consequences or crime. Taking Black peoples homes and job opportunities started in the 70s. Destroying our communities by not addressing crime or the fact that many of CPD are criminals helping gangs. Now you know how it took 40+ years to get to this point.

        1. N
          Not My Kind of Town anymore says:

          On the South Side

          It’s the other way around. The law-abiding residents were forced out by gangs and criminals. Once nice Chicago neighborhoods such as South Shore, Marquette Park, Englewood, and Roseland were destroyed.

          The Chicago Loop was once an area where ladies dressed up with white gloves for shopping at Marshall Field’s. Now it’s a cesspool with derelicts, criminals, and drug addicts preying upon the infirm, elderly, and the tourists who wander there.

          We love the Chicago Police Department.

  30. Chicago great city

    I’m from London, England went to Chicago in 2019 stayed at Palmer house hotel in the loop was therefor 6 days took the train to Wrigley field see the game as a Cubs fan, buddy guy club, some other clubs in the city, other than that walked everywhere, from Lincoln Park, Gold Coast, soldier field did all tourist stuff, mag mile, Hancock tower navy pier, etc, lots of places Chicago river tour great, down to goose island brewery (best beer) great bars, restaurants, etc also the cleanest city I’ve ever been to I include London in that.

    Been to Boston, NYC, Miami, & Atlanta, Chicago beats them all.

    Me & my wife walked about 50 miles according to her steps thing on phone & we felt very safe, we both are not gullible just be sensible & confidence hopefully will get back out there soon.

  31. A
    Anonymous says:

    There are no safe areas in Chicago anymore. Even the Gold Coast, Lincoln Park, and River North are not safe. Even in the daytime, carjacking, freeway shootings, and robberies are commonplace. I’ve lived in the Chicago area for sixty years, and I have never seen things so bad.

  32. The windy city is nice

    What’s up with the water in Chicago? Why aren’t they doing more to keep it clean? I like the city but the water is terrible. I can’t believe this is happening in a city from the US, in this day and age! Anyway, the city has a lot of fine places to visit and it will take you months to properly see it all (parks, bars, cafes, etc). Millennium Park, especially at night, is a must see.

    1. L
      Longtime White Sox fan says:

      Safety issued

      I would advise against visiting Millennium Park after night, and the Grant Park area in general.
      Too many tourists, even in groups of three or four, have been attacked and robbed.

      Farther north, Lincoln Park was once considered safe after nightfall for a couple’s stroll, but not any more.

      Posters who say “only a few Chicago neighborhoods are dangerous” are not to be taken seriously.

  33. A
    All known Traveller says:

    Do not walk the streets anywhere or be ready for anything

    So many people are getting mugged or attacked to the point you have to drive all over the city from point A to point B. It’s sad because one of the most beautiful cities in the world is getting destroyed and it seems that nobody cares. Rideshare companies are making money hand over fist just for transporting people a mere 4-10 blocks. Long gone are the days when you can stroll through what was the most beautiful city in America.

  34. D
    David C. says:

    Used to be a nice city

    North Michigan Avenue is now a shopper’s ghost town.

    Macy’s in Water Tower has moved out. The remaining high end stores limit access. There are more security people than shoppers. This used to be such a nice area, even just five years ago.
    Now it’s armed robberies and shootings, all over the Gold Coast.

Rated 3.24 / 5 based on 70 user reviews.

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