Warnings & Dangers
OVERALL RISK : MEDIUM
Most crime occurs between individuals who know each other or in high crime-ridden areas of the city, in which tourists would have little reason to go to. We recommend you take normal safety precautions and exercise common sense as you would in any other major city. Watch out for pickpockets in tourist areas and protect your valuables.
PICKPOCKETS RISK : MEDIUM
Pickpocket and bag and purse snatching are common in tourist locations and public transportation. Remain vigilant for thieves that use different strategies to rob you.
MUGGING RISK : MEDIUM
Muggings are the crime for tourists to be concerned with, even in areas you’d consider safe like the Garden District. People walking alone are targeted more often than people walking in groups. Daytime is a better time to be out exploring than at night. Avoid entering isolated areas such as cemeteries alone. Though most victims are not physically injured, criminals usually do not hesitate to use force if the target does not cooperate; in case of being robbed, do not resist and hand over your valuables.
SCAMS RISK : MEDIUM
As in any touristic place, there may be people trying to scam you in New Orleans. Homeless people can be aggressive towards you if you don’t hand them money. Be aware of “gold ring” tricks, fake petitions, groups of teenagers acting strangely or trying to distract you. Credit card scams are also common. Never leave your card out of sight, and withdraw money from reputable banks or hotels.
TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : LOW
Driving your own car or renting one in New Orleans can make be better to fully experience the entire city since no buses run through the heart of the city, so most visitors only ride buses when traveling uptown or out to City Park. The Regional Transit Authority (www.norta.com) offers bus and streetcar services. The service is decent, but do not rely only on public transport during your visit, especially if you’re staying for a long time.
NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : MEDIUM
Hurricanes are a threat to the city.
TERRORISM RISK : LOW
Terrorist attacks are unlikely. However, they cannot be ruled out. Remain vigilant and take advice from authorities, hotels and tour operators.
WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : MEDIUM
Many women travel safely without any issues. However, drunk men in the French Quarter and along parade routes are an annoyance to women. Women in almost any clothing are likely to receive vulgar comments. For example, outfits considered provocative are prone to get comments like “show your tits.” This does not only occur during Mardi Gras. Many men think that any woman wearing beaded necklaces has gotten them by displaying herself on the street.