United States : Safety by City
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The fifth most populous city in America, Philadelphia, is located in Southeastern Pennsylvania.
Geographically, it is positioned adjacent to the New Jersey and Delaware borders, and with that, its metropolitan area covers counties in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware.
Philadelphia has substantial historical significance for the United States of America.
It was once the capital of the United States, and it counts numerous cultural and educational venues like universities, museoums, companies and laboratories that are of world class.
With great history, comes great heritage! Philadelphia has to offer some amazing historical venues too.
For example, you shouldn’t miss out on the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall, where the Constitution and Declaration of Independence were signed.
The city has lived through a mid-20th century decline, and is now recovering, becoming slowly the city for those wishing for a true urban American life, without the glitz and glamour of other popular and populous cities in the U.S.
Warnings & Dangers in Philadelphia
OVERALL RISK : LOW
Philadelphia is overall very safe to travel to. Even though it is said that it's one of the most dangerous cities in America, this only applies to dangerous parts of the city, which are rarely frequented by tourists.
TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : LOW
Philadelphia is a God's gift when it comes to walking and many adore its convenience when it comes to talking long walks. However, it also has a safe and convenient public transport like the Philly PHLASH Downtown Loop. Also, bear in mind that the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA) is the fifth-largest and most inclusive transit system in the nation.
PICKPOCKETS RISK : LOW
Pickpockets and purse snatching can be an issue in public transport and locations frequented by tourists, though 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 a public transport or in crowded places.
NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : LOW
Occasional natural threats exist in some areas of Philadeplphia, like floods, fires, winter storms, tropical storms, tornadoes, windstorms, earthquakes, and landslides.
MUGGING RISK : LOW
You're not in danger in Philadelphia, when it comes to chances of being mugged or kidnapped. 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 : LOW
Excluding isolated shootings, Philadelphia 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 : LOW
Just like in other tourist destinations, there will be people trying to scam you in Philadelphia, too. Homeless people can turn agressive if you refuse to give them money. 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 : LOW
Philadelphia is very safe for female solo travelers. Following basic precaution measures should completely minimize the chances of anything going wrong.
So... How Safe Is Philadelphia Really?
Philadelphias has a reputation of being extremely unsafe, but it isn’t quite so.
It is frequently cited as being one of the most dangerous cities in America, but even though the statistics back this up, tourists should bear in mind that this is a huge city with both very safe and very unsafe neighborhoods.
While violent crime remains at a high level in comparison to other American cities, most of it won’t affect tourists: only those included in drug trade, street gangs and the likes.
These are parts of the city that tourists rarely see. All tourists should take usual precaution measures, just as they would in any other city or their own hometown.
You should, by all means, stay informed on which neighborhoods should be avoided due to heightened criminal activities and avoid those neighborhoods.
For example, the Center City and all its surroundings are very safe and considere to be wealthier neighborhoods, like Rittenhouse Square, Old City and Society Hill.
This goes for most central districts, too, including the Art Museum Area, Chinatown, the Parkway, Northern Liberties/Fishtown and Bella Vista.
As for the unsafe parts of the city, violence is generally an issue in the north central, west, and southwest portions of the city, which includes areas surrounding Drexel and Temple.
- 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 Philadelphia. 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 - Philadelphia has a humid subtropical climate characterized by four distinct seasons. Though the climate is subtropical, winters can be really cold and often snowy, with temperatures around 0°C during the colder months.
- Airports - Philadelphia International Airport is a major airport in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States. Most of the airport property is located in Philadelphia proper.
- Travel Insurance - Just like anywhere else, we recommend getting travel insurance when traveling to Philadelphia, since it covers not only the costs of medical problems, but also theft and loss of valuables.