Is Vancouver safe to visit? A comprehensive safety guide

Published by: Bounce8 February, 2023
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Vancouver is the most populated city in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia and one of the most beautiful. It is surrounded by clear blue waters and soaring mountain peaks, and these picture-perfect landscapes are unlike any other. It is also a hub for arts and culture and has a fantastic quality of living.

The city sees an average of up to 10 million visitors each year, most of who come to see the outstanding natural beauty or to experience cultural establishments like the Vancouver Art Gallery. The city is usually busier in the summer between the months of mid-June and mid-September, but there can also be an increase in tourists during the Christmas holidays and on spring break. The downtown area is quite dense as well with about 675,000 citizens of its own.

Whenever you're traveling somewhere new you have to think about where you'll be staying and what you'll want to see. With sights like Vancouver Maritime Museum and Grouse Mountain, Vancouver won't disappoint and when you need a safe place to store your bags in Vancouver you can trust Bounce. We'll keep any sized bag for the same price, and our mobile app makes booking luggage storage a simple and pleasant experience.

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Is Vancouver safe to visit right now?

Some people don't think to check for travel advisories or restrictions when planning a trip, but in reality, that should be your first step. Currently, there are no dangers of vacationing in Canada and it is a great country to travel to. In fact, it is the 10th safest country in the world according to the Global Peace Index. That being said, you should always consult your own government's advice before you visit any city, including Vancouver.

How safe is Vancouver really? No city is truly crime-free, and minor crimes can still happen in Vancouver. Overall the city has a very low crime rate, does not have a risk of natural disasters and there is almost no chance of any serious crimes happening. As a tourist, you'll only have to watch out for property crime and pickpockets, but scams or other major crimes are not a threat. You still have to know how to be safe in a new city and this guide will help you with Vancouver safety tips. Remember, no guide is perfect and we do recommend whether you're a seasoned traveler or not that you do your research.

Top petty crimes and scams in Vancouver affecting tourists

The truth is that you won't find much crime in Vancouver at all, but that doesn't mean that you should let your guard down. Here are some petty crimes that you might encounter during your trip and what you can do to avoid being a victim.


The top crime that you should look out for in Vancouver is pickpockets. Petty theft can occur, often in crowded areas like public transit stations or tourist attractions. Thieves can be quite skilled at taking personal items without you noticing which is why you should take extra precautions and protect your belongings when out dining or enjoying the city's fabulous entertainment.

All of your most precious items, including your passport and wallet, should be stowed in a secure and slash-proof bag, or left in a Bounce luggage locker. We suggest not carrying your bag on your back while walking through busy places since pickpockets might steal from it when you aren't looking. Instead, keep your bag in your line of sight at all times by carrying it in front of you.

Property crime

Another common danger in Vancouver includes property crime. People suggest not leaving anything expensive in a parked vehicle as car break-ins do happen, even in parking garages. Some items that may not seem valuable to you might still encourage someone to break into your vehicle, so it is important to stash all items in the trunk when you're going to be away from your car for a while. Even if you're going to be gone for just a minute, you should always lock your car doors and roll up the windows when it will be out of your line of vision. If you follow these safety tips then this crime will most likely not be a problem for you.

Cyber crime

Although cyber crime is not specifically common in Vancouver, it can happen in any major city and it is important to be aware of it. The risk of having your information stolen is ever increasing as more transactions are made online and you should protect yourself no matter where you go, even back home. Some things to do include using complex passwords, and unique ones, for every account. You should also be careful when using public Wi-Fi networks, especially if you're entering sensitive information into a website while online.

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Is Vancouver safe to travel alone

Good news for solo travelers; Vancouver is absolutely safe to visit on your own. Tourists are safe all over the city whether you're vacationing in a group or on your own. There are some areas that are safer than others, so you'll just need to avoid the bad neighborhoods at night. For your personal safety, stick to well lit areas when walking by yourself after dark, even in the city center. Be aware that this is a populous city and a significant number of homeless people live here, but they won't bother you aside from possibly asking for money. If you don't want to interact with them just keep your distance, mind your own business and walk away.

Female solo travelers will be happy to know that Canada is 8th on the Bounce Women Travel Safety Index, meaning that it is a very safe city for women to explore by themselves. Although there is nothing that makes Vancouver dangerous for women you should still take the regular precautions as you would back home. If you use your common sense it is incredibly rare that anything will happen to you, but as a friendly reminder, don't accept drinks when offered by someone you don't know or give out information about yourself to a stranger.

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Safest neighborhoods in Vancouver

Just like any other major city, different areas can have higher crime rates than others. Most of Downtown Vancouver is safe during the day because there are always people around, but here are a few more areas that you won't have to worry about.

Stanley Park

Aside from being one of the most beautiful places in the city, Stanley Park is also very safe. Reserve an entire afternoon to explore this area as it is huge, connecting West Vancouver and North Vancouver to the West End and Downtown core. We'll recommend though, that due to its sheer size and quiet atmosphere that you visit during the day.

Davie Village

Davie Village is the hub for the LGBTQ+ community and is a friendly and accepting place. It is a very safe place to wander around. Shop for fun fashion or stop for a coffee in a cozy cafe.

Robson Street

Vancouver's Robson Street is also safe and has plenty to offer in terms of entertainment and shopping. Said to have an international character, it's the ideal locale to spend some time during your trip.

Vancouver is a big city and there are a couple of places that are considered dangerous to wander around, especially at night. This is important information you should always check for when spending time in unfamiliar cities. While in Vancouver be careful and aware in the Downtown Eastside area of East Hastings, especially after dark, as well as in Mole Hill and Chinatown.

Is Vancouver public transportation safe?

Vancouver's public transit system is terrific, does not have any major crime and is fairly safe at all times of day or night. However, as with other large cities Vancouver does have petty crime occurrences like pickpocketing that can sometimes happen at train stations or even around the Vancouver International Airport. To be smart, look out for pickpockets when in densely populated areas like the public transit system.

Services like taxis are safe, and Vancouver also has ride-sharing apps like Uber, Lyft and KABU that you might be able to use to get around metro Vancouver. If you ever encounter any issues while using the transit system, contact the Vancouver police department for help.

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Important emergency numbers in Vancouver

One of the most vital things to do when traveling to any other city is to inform yourself of the different emergency services that are offered. There are numbers that you can call as well as plenty of hospitals around the Greater Vancouver area to assist you in an emergency. Any time you travel to another country we recommend you know your embassy number.

  • Ambulance, Fire and Police: 911
  • HealthLink BC: 811
  • Poison Control: 1-800-567-8911

Being safe in Vancouver, BC

It is normal for major cities to have crime but Vancouver is actually very safe. Lots of people like to vacation here and it is a great place to visit. Don't miss sights like Vandusen Botanical Garden for a calm stroll or the Capilano Suspension Bridge Park for a thrilling adventure. Want to do some more research before planning your trip? Read up on How to Get Around Vancouver and Where to Stay in Vancouver: The Ultimate Guide.

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