How Safe Is Tucson for Travel?

Tucson, United States
Safety Index:

United States FlagUnited States : Safety by City

United States - safety as a country

Tucson is the second-largest city in the state of Arizona.

The best thing about Tucson is it’s proximity to some of the most beautiful places you’ll ever see.

Arizona is an incredibly ecologically diverse state, within a few short hours you can drive to serene lakes, huge mountains, and beautiful desert landscapes.

There are places with water and falls in the mountains surrounding Tucson, as well.

The wildlife is extraordinary.

Roadrunners, javelinas, quail, rabbits, coyotes, etc. are quite common.

The weather is remarkable in the winter months.

You would rarely require a winter coat in the daytime.

It rarely rains, and it is sunny on average 286 days out of the year.

Warnings & Dangers in Tucson

Overall Risk


Tucson, unfortunately, can't be considered a safe city. It's not as dangerous as many others, but it requires a special amount of awareness and caution.

Transport & Taxis Risk


Although reliable, taxis and other means of transportation are only somewhat safe to use in Tucson, apart from pickpockets and petty thieves in buses, trains, and stations that may try to steal from you while it's crowded.

Pickpockets Risk


Tucson has one of the highest rates of vehicle theft in the USA. Bag snatchers aren't a rare sight either. Be very careful when on the streets of Tucson and leave all your valuables at home.

Natural Disasters Risk


During the monsoon season (which usually lasts between July and September), Tucson does experience flash flooding. Do not drive across a flooded road that is barricaded, by no means. Also, If you go walking in the desert parks, or on your own, you should learn desert-safety tips.

Mugging Risk


Muggings and other forms of violent crimes are common in Tucson. Residents of Arizona are allowed to carry concealed firearms and this applies to Tucson too, so be very careful, especially after dark.

Terrorism Risk


Excluding isolated mass shootings, Tucson 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


There aren't many scams in Tucson. Still, be wary of people trying to distract you to steal from you and of people overcharging you for various services. We advise you to be extremely careful when handling money and around ATMs.

Women Travelers Risk


Tucson, unfortunately, isn't safe for female solo travelers. There are no issues that would endanger females specifically but extreme caution is advised. Following basic precaution measures should minimize the chances of anything going wrong.

So... How Safe Is Tucson Really?

Tucson isn’t a safe city, though many that live here and that have traveled here have gone through the city without any problems.

In certain areas of Tucson, there is a lot of crime, mostly theft related.

Tucson does seem to have a bit of a drug problem, mostly with methamphetamine.

Many people living in Tucson haven’t encountered this problem, but you might run into some zombies walking the sidewalks on your way to work.

Depending on where you live, this might be a problem.

There is a huge homeless problem that the government does nothing about.

This, coupled with an enormous drug problem creates utter chaos and child abuse rates are quite high.

Property crime is high, particularly in urban areas.

You can easily have your car broken into, your garage too, and your house burgled.

Many species pose a threat, such as black widow spiders, rattlesnakes, scorpions, centipedes, Gila monsters, etc.

Even “jumping” cholla cactus can ensnare you and make you wish you were anywhere else.

The thing for which you probably aren’t prepared is the fact that you might see rattlesnakes, a scorpion, a centipede, a Gila monster, and a mountain lion from much too close, and also by accident.

How Does Tucson Compare?

CitySafety Index
St Louis58
Los Angeles56
Rio de Janeiro (Brazil)43
Sofia (Bulgaria)73
Siem Reap (Cambodia)63

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, contact your local US embassy for further information.
  • Currency - The United States dollar is the official currency in Tucson. Credit and debit cards are accepted nearly everywhere, and ATMs are widely available.
  • Weather - Arizona's climate is arid and semi-arid, characterized by sweltering summers, cool and dry winters, and mostly clear skies year-round.
  • Airports - Tucson International Airport is a joint civil-military airport, serving Tucson. It is located some 13 km south of downtown Tucson, in Pima County, Arizona. It is the second busiest airport in Arizona.
  • Travel Insurance - Just like anywhere else, we recommend getting travel insurance when traveling to Tucson, 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

Tucson Weather Averages (Temperatures)

Jan 11° C
Feb 13° C
Mar 16° C
Apr 19° C
May 24° C
Jun 29° C
Jul 31° C
Aug 30° C
Sep 28° C
Oct 22° C
Nov 16° C
Dec 12° C
Choose Temperature Unit

Average High/Low Temperature

Temperature / MonthJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec

Where to Next?

21 Reviews on Tucson

  1. Safe if you don't go outside

    It is very hot outside, and it has some very dangerous animals in the wild. I recommend to not go outside when it’s hot, and be prepared to meet scorpions and some other creatures, although if you are in a hotel, there is a high chance that it will not happen. Also, make sure to return to your home/hotel when it’s dark.

  2. L
    Lee Hendricks. says:

    No problems ever in Tucson!

    I used to live in Phoenix and would drive down to Tucson all the time on weekends. I have never ever had any problems in the center city, 4th ave, or hiking the desert trails outside of the city! This time was from 1997 thru 2014…..I love Tucson!!!!

    1. j
      jay grant says:

      Statistically insignificant!

  3. Make Safe Tucson Again

    I have visited Tucson over the last 55 years. As a youth it was so safe. I have seen an increase in homeless, drugs and street walkers. The City needs to take a tougher approach to these problems. The liberal attitude is at the core of the problem. Lock up the thieves, druggies and prostitutes. Because the weather is so temperate the homeless run the streets. Get tough on crime. Vote out Liberal council members. Make Tucson safe again.

    1. t
      tucsonan says:

      how do homeless people or “prostitutes” make you unsafe? get a grip, buddy.

      1. W
        Wannasee Tucson says:

        Just saying

        I can’t say much for Tucson itself, but when you ask the question about how does the Homeless, prostitutes, etc. make an area unsafe, I am thinking you must be on Meth.

    2. D
      David McCord says:

      GOP Cannot Win Here

      I have lived in Tucson for 40 years and wouldn’t live anywhere else. Crime? It’s high in every city of our size and is fueled by meth and opiate addictions. This claptrap about “liberals” is a tired, old right-wing load of nothing. See, Republicans can’t win jack in Southern Arizona, Pima County, and especially in Tucson. Mayor? Democrat. City Council, all Democrats. The gop can’t win here because no one buys their lies.

      1. M
        Mr.Tony says:

        Please, get your crazy “left-wing” head out of the sand and look around you David McCord! ALL of Tucson’s crime, drug and illegal immigrant problems are a directly related to Tucson’s extremely liberal agenda and policies. It doesn’t have anything to do with, what you say is a “right-wing load of nothing”.
        If you blind “libs” had your way, you’d completely do away with all the jails and police. Oh yeah, lets just get them all “help” for their addiction and criminal behavior, right? Because it’s not their fault that they do drugs, deal drugs, and rob and kill people, right? Now that’s a load of bulls**t! Most of them will get out of rehab and go right back to their old ways, for the most part. Not always, but most of them do.
        And yes, you’re right, Republicans/GOP can’t win in Tucson, which is exactly why you have such a huge drug and crime problem there! Republicans believe in Police/law enforcemtnt, “legal” immigration, and putting criminals in prison so they don’t harm or kill innocent, productive members of society! So, what the hell is wrong with that?
        I’m not right or left, but I did live in Tucson from 2009 – 2012. What a pit! Crime is insane there. The roads are absolutely horrible, and it’s not a cheap place to live, unless you compare it to L.A. or N.Y.C. or S.F.
        It seems like most of the population in Tucson are non-english speaking Mexicans or illegal immigrants, UofA liberals who pretent everything is fine, crazy meth/drug heads and lots of homeless people who were not just good people who were down on their luck. Most of them were scary, crazy, drunk agressive types. This is what I saw there. I’m sure there are some good people living there, I just never saw or met any of them in three years, unfortunately. My neighbors were all unfriendly and bizarre. Three years and they still wouldn’t even say hello or wave. They just pretend they don’t even see you. Now that’s just weird!
        The first month I lived there, there was a triple murder directly across the street from our new house. A month later a drive-by shooting at 9 am in front of our house while my wife was on the computer and looking out our front window – no joke! And this was in a newer neighborhood ($200,000 houses, HOA, etc.). These were Sinaloa drug cartel related (two rental houses in the neigbhorhood had Mexican drug dealer/gang members living there). Police had been called out several times before, but did nothing. Welcome to Democrat run Tucson. I decided to move to Florida, and the crime in Florida was noticably less than in Tucson. And that’s saying something, since FL isn’t exactly a low crime state.
        Tucson is a horrible place, unless you have loads of money and can live in Oro Valley or way out east near the mountains. These are the places where all the wealthy liberals live – so they don’t have to deal with all the crime and problems in the rest of the city, which they created!
        It’s really unfortunate because Tucson is located in such a beautiful part of Arizona, and the climate there is great most of the time. Unfortunately, these are the only two good things I can say about the place.

        1. A
          Anonymous says:

          It’s unfettered capitolism that leaves these people out in the streets at night. Stay in Florida with the swamp creatures.

        2. M
          Mr. Jim says:

          Mr. Tony, you watch too much Fox News. Phoenix actually has higher crime rates than Tucson. You haven’t lived in Tucson for a decade.

      2. LOL- well with all the people leaving California and thousands going to AZ, guess what??? The majority are Republicans and those Democrats in office will be pushed out. Biden and his puppet masters are a joke and they’re ruining the Country.
        Watch and see Tucson and other AZ cities make the change to BETTER and get those darn disgusting Democrats out!

        1. A
          Anonymous says:

          Most of those from California are Democrat

  4. A
    Anonymous says:

    I agree about the homeless and drug epidemic there, however they need help. Not jail

    1. j
      jay grant says:

      who’s money are you spending?

  5. O
    Owlephant2 says:

    Devil's playground

    Tucson is the devils playground. I lived here about 25 yrs ago. Absolutely fell in love with it. Wanted to come back here so badly. Biggest mistake ever. I lost my job and fell into homelessness for 8 months. Once there it is so hard to climb back up. The street lives by totally separate rules. Cops harass ya. I have no criminal background nor drug use and I was constantly being stopped. They say there is all this help to re-home. Not true. Not true at all. It was a living hell being homeless. I don’t wish it on my worst enemy. Thankfully I made it out. Taught me I am so much stronger than I ever thought I could be. Once in a better position I am leaving this place. To many weird and unexplainable things happen too.

    1. K
      Karin Sis says:

      I’m sorry, there are so many different Agencies that practically feed the homeless 3 meals a day and plenty of shelters. If you are not able to find help, google help for the homeless, you have your choice.

      1. A
        Anonymous says:

        With your homeless phone?

    2. God bless you. It takes courage to overcome such dire circumstances.

  6. G
    Garth Garthly says:

    A good life for ordinary people

    For ordinary Brits like me, life in Tucson is safer than life in, say, Cambridge, UK, where I came from 20 years ago. In Cambridge, I came up against quite a lot of criminal behaviour, whereas in Tucson, I have only once had a problem when some young people through a brick through my bedroom window. I called the police and they quickly came and were very courteous and professional. If you are an ordinary employed person, life in Tucson is safe and problem-free. Of course, if you fall into the homeless life here, it is pretty bad, as it is anywhere in the US.

    1. Sceptical

      Only good review was of yours, they scared me out with this much “high criminal rate” & scary depiction of Tucson

  7. J
    Just saying says:

    Something about the State of AZ

    My experience is that AZ, and the politics of the state are a growing disaster. They can’t even run a straight election.

Rated 3.43 / 5 based on 21 user reviews.

Share Your Experience