How Safe Is New York City for Travel?

New York City, United States
Safety Index:
67

New York City – the most vibrant city in the world, also called The Big Apple or, simply, NYC, is the most populous city in America (with approximately 8.2 million residents), and without a doubt, the most popular in the world.

Many call it “the factory of dreams” or a “city where dreams come true”, “the city of opportunities”, etc.

New York got these nicknames because of its reputation that anyone and everyone has a chance to make it in this city, and become something, make their dreams come true.

New York is located at the mouth of the Hudson River in the southernmost part of the state, which is, furthermore, a part of the Mid-Atlantic region of the U.S.

New York City is the American, and possibly the world’s center for media, culture, food, fashion, art, research, finance, and trade.

Don’t forget its magnificent and world-famous skyline, dominated by the iconic Empire State Building.

There is nothing you can’t do in New York City as a tourist.

There’s something for literally everybody, so there’s no doubt you’ll have a magnificent time.

Warnings & Dangers in New York City

Overall Risk

OVERALL RISK : MEDIUM

New York is a very safe city to travel to. Tourists are unlikely to experience any incidents or inconveniences. What contributes to the general feeling of insecurity in this country are the isolated terrorist attacks, but they are unlikely to occur at places frequented by tourists.

Transport & Taxis Risk

TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : LOW

Since this is such a huge tourist city, it's expected that public transport works like a charm and is very reliable and safe. Means of transportation are numerous in NYC.

Pickpockets Risk

PICKPOCKETS RISK : MEDIUM

There aren't any pickpockets in New York, and the rate of petty crime is on a major decline for the past couple of years. Still, it is wise to watch your belongings while on public transport or in crowded Midtown streets or packed subway cars.

Natural Disasters Risk

NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : LOW

Occasional natural threats exist in New York in the form of occasional blizzards and extremely low temperatures during the winter months.

Mugging Risk

MUGGING RISK : LOW

When it comes to chances of being mugged or kidnapped, they are very low in New York. Violent street crime is not a common occurrence but only if you avoid dangerous areas of some cities that even locals rarely dare to walk around.

Terrorism Risk

TERRORISM RISK : MEDIUM

New York hasn't been the target of any terrorist attacks recently, but the attacks shouldn't be ruled out. Be aware of your surroundings at all times.

Scams Risk

SCAMS RISK : LOW

Just like in other tourist destinations, there will be people trying to scam you in New York, too. Be wary of anyone trying to distract you, flashing large signs in front of you or ATMs that look like they've been tampered with.

Women Travelers Risk

WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : LOW

The city of New York is very safe for female solo travelers. Following basic precaution measures should completely minimize the chances of anything going wrong.

So... How Safe Is New York City Really?

No worries – New York is statistically the safest large city in the United States.

Due to constant police presence, it’s probably the safest place you can find yourself in.

Of course, since it is so large, it’s expected that some parts of it are very unsafe for tourists, but even the risks that are listed here, are highly unlikely to happen.

Most violent crimes that do occur in the US, occur in suburbs or urban areas of some cities.

It is by no means as widespread throughout the entire city as the media would have us believe.

Even though there is a minor chance that, as a tourist, you might experience petty theft incidents, it is highly unlikely because petty theft crimes such as pickpocketing and bag snatching have been on a decline for the past couple of years.

Violent crime rates are also pretty low, so you should feel mostly safe here, especially because, since 9/11, most touristic landmarks have been severely backed up by police presence, so New York City is the safest place you can find yourself in.

You may even get frisked and searched near the touristic landmarks.

How Does New York City Compare?

CitySafety Index
New York City67
Atlanta58
St Louis58
Los Angeles56
Oakland57
Sao Paulo (Brazil)45
Rio de Janeiro (Brazil)43
Sofia (Bulgaria)73

Useful Information

  • Visas - The US is famous for its harsh policy for acquiring a tourist, let alone a resident visa. The US embassies usually ask for interviews before granting tourist visas, and tourists usually have to pay up to 160 USD to get a visa. 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 - The United States dollar is the official currency in New York City. Credit and debit cards are accepted nearly everywhere, and ATMs are widely available. The prices vary but you can plan on spending about 100 dollars per day.
  • Weather - The climate in New York City is humid continental characterized by all four seasons. It is hot and humid summers ( from June to September, cool and dry autumns (from September to December), cold winters, from December to March, and wet springs (from March to June). Bear in mind that temperatures in the winter can go down to as low as -18°C and in the summer, as high as 38°C.
  • Airports - John F. Kennedy International Airport is the primary international airport serving New York City. It is the busiest international gateway into North America. It is located in New York, 30 km southeast of Midtown Manhattan.
  • Travel Insurance - Just like anywhere else, we recommend getting travel insurance when traveling to New York City, since it covers not only the costs of medical problems but also theft and loss of valuables.
Click here to get an offer for travel insurance

New York City Weather Averages (Temperatures)

Jan 1° C
Feb 2° C
Mar 6° C
Apr 12° C
May 17° C
Jun 23° C
Jul 25° C
Aug 25° C
Sep 21° C
Oct 14° C
Nov 9° C
Dec 4° C
Choose Temperature Unit

Average High/Low Temperature

Temperature / MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
High
°C
451017222729292518127
Low
°C
-3-22712182120161050
High
°F
394150637281848477645445
Low
°F
272836455464706861504132

Where to Next?

18 Reviews on New York City

  1. T
    Tyler Boro says:

    New York City is crowded

    Before you judge just how big a city is, take a look at the tourists themselves shoving and pushing, those aren’t serious crimes but shove someone who’s already committed a crime and you’re in trouble.

    1. A
      Anonymous says:

      bruh. NEW YORK AND NEW JERSEY IS SAFE I LIVE HERE

    2. That’s the tourist’s problem. We’re generally cool with anyone, but we expect anyone coming to OUR city to treat us with respect.

  2. This review is as bullshit as their Mumbai review. New York City is my homeland, and never have I encountered a pickpocket. Overall risk is low, low. Medium is on par with the most dangerous city in the United states, detroit. We are safer than Detroit.

    1. A
      Anonymous says:

      well they are still saying its safe for a big crowded city.

  3. A
    Anonymous says:

    NYC has become far too dangerous. Mugging takes place very often. And here it’s mentioned low. Keep hearing about shooting some place or the other every second day. At this moment, overall risk is high.

    1. That’s strange. I’ve been living in NYC for years and nothing went wrong.

  4. G
    Graz Bail says:

    Scams should be high, and mugging should be medium. Whoever made this is an absolute retard.

  5. Safe in daytime

    Generally very safe. Do not wander in Central Park or ride the Subway at night – a policeman I met said there are organized gangs that will wander around looking for solitary people in Central Park at night and stab them. Pickpockets are most active in Times Square, and operate from rings in Columbia, though not as active as before.

    1. I beg to differ

      Robbery, mugging, assault, petty theft, drug addicts roaming the streets, And let’s be honest… New Yorkers are downright rude.

      No friendly business here. And unless you wanna be there and are used to it… it’s literally like a third-world country. There’s garbage and trash everywhere, shocking.

      And the smell in NYC is disgusting. That’s just being honest!

  6. N
    Nathan J. Potter says:

    New York is Great

    New York City is the greatest city of the United States ever. It has Times Square, Broadways, etc. It is Generally Safe for me.

  7. I listed to this review and then I was mugged, Police did nothing but laugh...

    I read this review before I visited so this happened…..
    This city if full of scammer and rude people…I was mugged walking back to the W hotel at 8pm….The cops laughed at me when I reported the mugging and took down my statement… Since I “ONLY” lost $250.00 in cash. I gave them a person sketch of the black guy who committed the crime but it never made it into evidence.. They told me they have a back log and won’t even check the Camera the NYPD had set up in that area….I called back weeks then months later and was told they have not looked into it yet due to all the back log of murders and I was encouraged to just cut my losses and not pursue it further….People thing NY is a great city but it’s because they never been to any other city that was not in a Blue state….I was

  8. Not as safe as I would have liked

    New York City certainly has a lot to offer but since there are also a lot of muggings, pickpockets and some people are rude, I didn’t enjoy it as much as I thought I would. Too bad, because this city is a great one but the Police doesn’t seem to be on top of things or is understaffed and a lot of bad things happen without getting solved and it diminishes trust in the city as a whole. If the city was safer, it would deserve a 4 or even a 5 for the many museums, interesting bars and cafes and many other attractions.

    1. Right on rude

      Yep, your right on rude. The only nice people were immigrant taxi drivers. I’m shocked at the trash, filth, graffiti, and garbage everywhere… no wonder they have a rat problem. And that was Manhattan!

      You can’t walk down the street without being bothered for money or political issue. For the amount they charge for food and hotel you think the money was well spent, not!

  9. 17 years in NYC and never encounter any problem, most people mind their own business.

  10. R
    Resident says:

    Lively, Vibrant, Diverse, Mostly Safe

    I’ve lived in NYC for almost 8 years in both Manhattan and Brooklyn. For the most part, the city is very safe and in many ways, predictable. You know which areas to visit or hang around in, and which areas to just avoid. Certain metro stations are only fine into the evening, others are a 24/7 affair. Certain areas are a bit dirty and can smell (especially parts of midtown, which I avoid) due to the high population density and constant flow of tourists and workers, but other areas are simply beautiful, charming, and extremely safe. Even many parts of Brooklyn are stunning and safe, with well preserved architecture, tree-lined streets, small cafes, popular shops, etc. It’s the only city of its kind outside Asia, and most people end up loving it even if they wouldn’t choose to live here.

    However, definitely avoid empty metro cars late at night that smell bad. NYC has a lot of homeless people who will camp out on the metro, and empty cars usually symbolize that a homeless person is in the car and the entire car smells horrible. Obviously most do not smell bad, but it is something to be aware of. Mental illness affects many of the homeless, so it is also wise to keep your distance, especially if you are a woman, and said person looks agitated or seems to be acting strange. Use common sense in these situations and leave the area or talk to someone who looks friendly nearby and explain that you feel uncomfortable. New Yorkers are not the most nice people, but they are very protective of others and have most likely been in your shoes.

  11. NY fan for life, can’t wait to go back

    As a general rule, I would avoid parks, wooded areas or poorly lit areas, being them tourist hotspots or not. I never stray past this no matter what city I’m visiting, better to be safe than sorry.

    Scammers can target pretty much everywhere, especially in public spaces. Don’t engage, don’t try to be friendly, just mind your own route.

    If you hit Manhattan you would be pretty much safe, even more so if we’re talking about lower Manhattan. Here you’ll have the Statue of LIberty ferry, the Ellis Island ferry and the Staten Island ferry. Mind you, you can opt for guided walking tours or self-guided tours. We went for the first one since we wanted to make sure we won’t miss any important places. The three oh-so-popular bridges: Brooklyn, Manhattan and Williamsburg are also a must see, each offering different views.

    I keep reading about muggings but I never had the misfortune of dealing with this or seeing anyone being mugged during the two weeks we’ve spent in NY. Where you’re staying is also key; we switched between two airbnbs which worked for us. If you choose a hotel I would go for reputable, well-known ones not for dinghies that offer huge discounts. This way you are making sure you opt for a good neighborhood too.

    I for one was super careful with my wallet but imho I felt way more unsafe in Paris than I did in NY.

    If this is a budget trip than the classic ny cab is your friend, way cheaper than uber. You might have to look for one a bit longer but you will save quite a few bucks.

    TRUTH BOMB: Don’t listen to naysayers that are shaming NY just because they had one bad incident or because they saw god knows what movie that portrayed it kinda wrong. There’s so much stuff that NY has to offer that makes it worth at least a visit.

  12. Uncertain Under the Current Leadership

    I’ve been to Manhattan on multiple occasions, mostly work related, a few leisure. From all the times I’ve been, pre-2019, they were fantastic…loved it and was excited to plan returns for more leisure. Now in 2022, I find myself very reluctant to allow my teen to travel there with the high school they currently attend. Even as a chaperone, I’m hesitant to go…all I read, see, and hear, leads me to be very concerned and it seems like there are no honest answers on whether we should go. The risk vs reward in today’s climate, just isn’t there for me. Any input would be appreciated…plans are for Dec 2022…if we keep them.

Rated 3.28 / 5 based on 18 user reviews.

Share Your Experience