Montana : Safety by City
- Big Sky
- Great Falls
- Miles City
- West Yellowstone
One of the most beautiful states you can visit is Montana.
Home to several National Parks, it is a state that does see a bit of travel each year.
The amazing wildlife, glacier views, and small-town hospitality make it an attraction for thousands each year.
Those that call this state home enjoy small-town living, which is found throughout the state.
Unlike other states that you may have visited, the weather and wildlife can pose a different kind of threat if you are not prepared or paying attention.
If you are looking to travel to Montana soon, keep reading about the possible travel risks and how to prepare for your trip coming up.
You need to be aware of what dangers lie ahead and how to avoid them for your safety and protection.
Warnings & Dangers in Montana
OVERALL RISK: LOW
When you are traveling in Montana, the overall risk for crime is low. There just aren't a lot of people in the state and the environment for some crimes just aren't there. When it comes to car accidents and natural disasters, however, you may find that risk to be a little higher. The danger in Montana comes from the weather and the wildlife that call this state home.
TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK: LOW
If you need transport in Montana, your risk of crime is low and that's because public transportation is not as prevalent as in other states. Once you fly into Montana, you are responsible for your own travel because the state is so spread out. Most visitors rent a vehicle for the duration of their visit so they can get to their destinations. There are some buses that will get you across the state and their risk for crime is low, also. The biggest concern you should have with transportation is accidents and driving slower in unknown terrain. Be prepared to drive slower when traveling and always be looking out for wildlife that could be in the roadways during the day or night.
PICKPOCKETS RISK: LOW
The risk for pickpockets in Montana is relatively low considering there are not a lot of congested areas. Any real concern about this activity is more prevalent in the National Parks, where the largest crowds in the state are gathered. This is certainly not a common crime across the state, even in the cities with the highest crime rate.
NATURAL DISASTERS RISK: MEDIUM
Possible natural disasters in Montana come with medium risk. While there are no active volcanoes, there are earthquakes that happen regularly throughout the state. Most are minimal in damage but they have the potential to be worse. In addition to earthquakes is the severe winter weather that Montana gets from November through April. Everything from rain, ice, and snow on top of freezing temperatures can make the natural disaster rid higher than other states.
MUGGING RISK: LOW
The risk for mugging is low in Montana since there are only a couple of big cities. The ability to get around freely and without congestion in these areas is high, minimizing the mugging risk.
TERRORISM RISK: LOW
The risk of a terrorist attack is low when traveling to Montana. Despite the attraction of the National Parks, the rest of the state has a low and rural population, decreasing the impact of an attack.
SCAMS RISK: LOW
While the scam risk is low for the overall state, it is a medium level when you are traveling near the National Parks. Because of the number of travelers to the area, scammers flock to take advantage of it.
WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK: LOW
Women who are looking to travel to Montana have a low risk, with all of the airports being friendly to travelers of all kinds. Women can use all of the different transportation options and get around the state safely.
TAP WATER RISK: MEDIUM
The tap water risk is medium since some areas have been known to carry metals and arsenic in the water. One of the biggest concerns that visitors have when they visit Montana is the water, and the numerous abandoned mines that have been left throughout the state.
Safest Places to Visit in Montana
While the state, in general, is pretty safe, there are a few cities that carry some of the lowest crime rates:
- Columbia Falls
These cities are great for visitors and residents alike when it comes to crime and safety.
They have full-time residents and healthy economies where the population is working and not seeking out crime.
Places to Avoid in Montana
There are a few towns that you want to avoid when you are visiting Montana because of their higher crime rate.
- Wolf Point
These areas are all small towns where the economy is not as prosperous.
Even in Ronan at number one, the statistics indicate that you still have a small chance of becoming a victim in this town.
Safety Tips for Traveling to Montana
While Montana is one of the more relatively safe areas to travel to, there are some safety tips to keep in mind when you travel to the open country and travel to the area.
You want to keep in mind the natural elements such as the terrain, weather, and wildlife so that you are staying safe and able to thoroughly enjoy your trip.
- Drive slow and defensive. For those who have never driven in Montana, a lot of the roads are curvy and travel through mountains. If you are not used to this type of terrain, you must take it easy and drive carefully. Many new drivers have accidents because they were going too fast or did not pay attention to the way the road curved.
- Keep emergency supplies available. Montana is one of the most rural states within the United States, so you could find yourself traveling for hours without access to essentials. Make sure that you pack emergency supplies and essential items before you get out on the road. If for some reason, you have vehicle trouble and need to pull over, you need to have nonperishable snacks, water, and items to keep you warm available until help can get to you.
- Expect wildlife. Whether you are on the road or you are hiking through a park, Montana is home to lots of wildlife. Prepare yourself before you enter any trail or wooded area where you may come across large wildlife and need to protect yourself. You can carry things like bear spray with you to ward them off.
- Keep your valuables out of sight. If you are traveling to somewhere like Yellowstone National Park in Montana where there are thousands of visitors at one time, you should be mindful of those around you and where your valuables are. Not everyone in these parks is from Montana and some are looking for quick grab valuable items while you are out on a trail or visiting a landmark.
- Travel Insurance is Essential. Because Montana has extensive wildlife and poor weather conditions half of the year, you want to make sure that you protect your investment in this trip with travel insurance. You can get compensation for your trip with this coverage and have the best protection.
- Pay attention to posted signs. There is lots of delicate and dangerous terrain in Montana that you could come across while visiting. If there is postage that says stay back and avoid an area, it is posted for a reason. Someone has probably already gotten hurt, which prompted the sign in the first place.
- Take layers of clothing. Since the weather in Montana is cooler and can change from the morning to the evening, you want to wear lots of layers and warm clothing. Without essential warm clothing in Montana, you may find yourself in a dangerous situation.
- Notify your bank about your travels. Before you leave for Montana, you need to let your bank know that you will be traveling so that they can expect these charges to your account. The last thing you need is to get to Montana and not be able to use your funds for your trip.
- Keep bottled water. While the tap water in Montana is safe, there are lots of places out in the countryside where you may come across spring water. Due to inactive mines in the area, some of these creeks may carry traces of arsenic and lead, which are not safe.
- Carry a first aid kit. You need essential materials on your trip if you are planning to visit Montana soon. With so much of it being far away from any healthcare facility, you need essentials in a first aid kit that can keep your body stable until you can get to a facility.
So... How Safe Is Montana Really?
Montana is truly one of the safest states that you can visit when you are traveling in the United States.
Whether you are visiting the rural towns in the area or checking out National Parks in the state, you can expect to have a safe and fun experience no matter where you are traveling.
Safety concerns are not directed at crime as much as being prepared for the weather and the wildlife that have the most impact on this state.
How Does Montana Compare?
If you are traveling domestically to Montana, you do not need a visa to visit. If you are an international traveler, you will need a passport to get into the country and visit. If you are planning to stay and work, you will need a worker's visa that you can obtain once you get to Billings.
Because Montana is located in the United States, US Dollars are used as the currency in the area. If you need to do currency exchange, several of the local banks in Billings will be able to do that transaction for you.
In the Summer and Spring months, the weather in Montana is enjoyable. It is not too hot and there is not too much moisture from rain causing issues while you travel. From late Fall, through the Winter and Spring, you want to avoid Montana because of the frigid temperatures. Also, there is an extensive amount of rain, snow, and ice, making travel difficult.
There are several airports in Montana that you can fly into when traveling: • Billings • Bozeman • Butte • Great Falls • Kalispell • Helena • Missoula • West Yellowstone
If you are planning to travel to Montana at any time, it is a good idea to get travel insurance, as the weather in Montana can stop a trip, especially if you are planning to travel during the colder months.
Montana Weather Averages (Temperatures)
Average High/Low Temperature
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Montana - Safety by City