Kansas : Safety by City
- Cottonwood Falls
- Council Grove
- Dodge City
- Fort Scott
- Garden City
- Great Bend
- Junction City
- La Crosse
- Overland Park
- Prairie Village
Leawood, Kansas, holds a pole position for many items on a tourist’s checklist.
There’s a big city just to the north, a wide park expanse to the south, a whole other state just across the street, and some of the more luxurious businesses in the whole Kansas City area.
This city has consistently ranked as one of the most affluent communities in the Kansas City area and generally goes hand in hand with Overland Park as far as hotels, attractions, and restaurants go.
There’s a golfer’s delight in Leawood, with one of the best country club golf courses in the region, and it’s even open to the public!
Shopping is top-notch here, too, with Town Center Plaza being just one upscale shopping center at an intersection with shops on all four corners.
While this is mostly a residential area for about 34,000 people, the amenities bring people from two states and around the KC metro area to visit and spend a day living the good life.
Warnings & Dangers in Leawood
OVERALL RISK: LOW
There's a low overall risk here, especially where violent crime is concerned. The theft rate is about average, and we'll talk about that, but overall you'll really like the sense of safety here.
TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK: LOW
RideKC is the transit system that goes through Johnson County and into Kansas City. Rideshares and taxis are readily available. There are plenty of car rental options, and much of the city is bicycle-friendly. An option you choose is a low-risk.
PICKPOCKETS RISK: MEDIUM
There's a medium risk here, with seven pickpockets or purse snatchings reported in 2020. While seven isn't a huge number, it's the $966 average value that was stolen that should pique your interest. Since there's so much shopping here, there are bound to be more people looking to snatch a bag from a high-end store. You need to be very protective of your purse, wallet, credit cards, cash, and receipts here.
NATURAL DISASTERS RISK: MEDIUM
If there's one thing affluence can't buy, it's protection from severe weather. Kansas is a very active weather state, and there are risks from severe thunderstorms that spawn tornadoes to snowstorms and just about everything in between. There's a medium risk this could happen at any time of year, so brush up on severe weather safety, and you'll be ready.
MUGGING RISK: LOW
There's a low risk here. Since 2017, there haven't been more than three robberies in a year, and there was just one in 2020. While you might be at a higher risk of having something stolen, it's likely not going to be forcefully taken from you.
TERRORISM RISK: MEDIUM
Since Leawood is part of a large metro area, there's medium risk. We give that risk to all large cities, so there's nothing special about Kansas City that makes it stand out from other large cities in the Midwest. The Department of Homeland Security puts out bulletins several times yearly to discuss specific terror concerns and how to be a vigilant community member or tourism to help combat terrorism.
SCAMS RISK: LOW
There's a low risk of a tourist scam here, but the typical "get rich quick" and senior scams do happen to people here. You should never have to purchase gift cards for any purpose other than if you choose to for a gift. If someone ever directs you to buy gift cards, it's likely a scam.
WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK: LOW
Women should feel safe, if not ecstatic, visiting Leawood since there's such a low risk. The only point of concern is walking around with a designer bag and tons of shopping bags because that can make you an easy target.
TAP WATER RISK: LOW
WaterOne reports in the Annual Water Quality Report that the water meets or exceeds all requirements here, and there were no violations in 2021.
Safest Places to Visit in Leawood
Town Center Plaza is the central hub of Leawood, and if the city had a downtown area, this would be it.
More than 80 stores, boutiques, cafes, and beauty options line this section of the shopping center of the city.
In every direction, you’ll see shopping heaven.
Park Place is another shopping Mecca, with plenty of restaurants, spas, stores, and entertainment to keep you busy, even when you’re tired from your time at Town Center Plaza.
Farmer’s markets, movie nights, and live music are available on certain days of the week.
Ironhorse Golf Course is on the south side of Leawood and offers a four-star championship course.
This is the only Troon Golf Course you can find in the metro area, and tee times can be booked online.
Camp Branch Glade is a nearly 60-acre park that’s designed to expand with other parks as the development happens.
My research about Kansas has really squashed any notion that Kansas is just a big, flat state.
This park is rich with limestone rocks and outcroppings, a sinkhole, and prickly pear cacti.
A stream runs through it, offering relief from the summer heat.
Just four miles west of the park in Overland Park, you can visit the Overland Park Arboretum & Botanical Gardens.
You can wander this 300-acre attraction on your own or pay a little extra for a guided tour through the lush landscape.
You also have several wineries to choose from just south of Leawood.
Serendipity has a tasting room open daily and is a great venue for a special event.
There’s even a “She Shed” with four rooms and a living space you can rent for the weekend or week.
You can’t miss the bright red building where Aubrey Vineyards is located.
Wine tastings are available, complete with a Charcuterie board and some light dining options.
You can also order wine by the bottle with custom labels.
Places to Avoid in Leawood
There aren’t any neighborhoods too dangerous to drive around in Leawood.
In fact, this would be the type of place I’d love to drive through and just admire the elegant homes.
There are plenty of Home Owner’s Associations here, and the neighborhoods just look immaculate.
I know you know about car safety.
I know you know to lock the car, roll up the windows, and not leave personal items inside the car.
I know you know to put all the shopping bags in the trunk.
Here’s something you probably don’t know.
54% of thefts in Leawood involve a car being broken into or having an accessory stolen.
Thieves are FOUR TIMES MORE LIKELY to break into a car than shoplift here too.
Please, protect your car.
If you’re doing a lot of shopping, don’t let anyone see you loading up the trunk with bags and go back inside.
Run back to the hotel or ask the concierge to watch them.
You can also valet park and have the valet people put your bags in the car as you go.
Just don’t forget to tip for this service.
Safety Tips for Traveling to Leawood
- You can view a live interactive crime map on the Leawood Police Department’s website. In a new twist from the hundreds of crime mapping websites I’ve seen, you can actually turn on the “heat map” to show the areas that have the highest number of crimes.
- State Line Road is the actual state line between Kansas and Missouri, and it runs north/south. The east/west roads all change names as you cross the state line, except for 135th Street.
- The park system here has its own police department. If you need police while visiting a local park, call the Park Police at (913) 782-0720.
- You can also review quarterly crime reports on the Johnson County Parks website. It shows each park, the number of crimes, and a comparison to the previous year’s crimes.
- The Leawood Police Department has a form where you can file a traffic complaint. This could be anything from construction problems to aggressive driving. Be sure to get the license plate, if applicable, so that the police can track down the other driver.
- Sign up for Notify JoCo alerts through the city’s website. This is an emergency management program that will send users emergency emails or text messages when severe weather is forecasted, developing, or happening.
- When there is a snowstorm in Leawood, the city will have GPS-enabled snow plows working their way through the city, and you can track the progress on an interactive map. Main roads are given top priority, and then the plowing is done by districts. The city aims to have all snow cleared within 24 hours after snowfall ends, so if you can stay put in your hotel during the snowstorm, that’s the safest option.
- Ok, so maybe you can safely get yourself to the Leawood Pioneer Library for some sledding. This is a popular sledding area during fresh snowfall, but you sled at your own risk. It’s advised to wear a helmet while sledding, and don’t be embarrassed if you choose to do so.
- When making purchases here and you get that option of, “Do you want the receipt in your bag or with you?” take it with you. Receipts give a lot more personal information than we realize. You should shred (not just rip) receipts before disposing of them. Ask the front desk of your hotel if they will shred them for you.
- If you need to contact a police officer to report a crime or non-urgent issue, you can call the police department 24 hours a day at (913)642-7700.
So... How Safe Is Leawood Really?
Leawood is really very safe when it comes to violent crimes.
There were 14 reported in 2020.
Three of those were sexual assaults, one was robbery, and the rest were aggravated assaults.
Half of those crimes happened against strangers, so while the risk is low, the chance of a tourist being a victim is higher than in most cities.
40% of violent crimes happened in homes.
Theft is the real safety concern here, for all the reasons we’ve discussed.
The average household income in Leawood is $157,000, and the homes average $472,000.
To a thief, this place could be a gold mine, and they will be looking for crimes of opportunity.
It’s important to realize not every city in the Kansas City area is going to be this safe.
You should review the neighboring cities if you plan to venture outside the Leawood city lines.
How Does Leawood Compare?
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You should plan about three to four months ahead of time to go through the U.S. Visa process. It's going to cost at least $160. You will need your visa at the airport, but not as you travel around Kansas City.
You can only use the U.S. Dollar here, and there are many ways to spend it. It's wise to use one credit card for all purchases so you can easily track purchases and spot fraud. Let your bank know where you'll be traveling and how much you estimate you'll spend. Set a limit for purchases so large numbers will be declined. Carry cash for tips if you prefer, or you can ask anyone who needs to be tipped if they have a Venmo account and tip that way.
You'll want winter clothing from November through March, but there might be milder days there. Layers of clothing will be helpful in spring and fall because temperatures can fluctuate a lot, even throughout the day. Summer will be hot and humid. There is a great deal of nightlife here, so bring some nicer outfits.
Kansas City International Airport is at the opposite end of the metro area, and you'll need at least 45 minutes to get there. If there is a lot of traffic, plan for an hour.
Travel insurance is a great idea, and don't forget the insurance on a rental car, too, with such a high risk of a break-in here.
Leawood Weather Averages (Temperatures)
Average High/Low Temperature
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Kansas - Safety by City