In the city
You can rest assured that Bolivia is one of the most
peaceful, safe, and hospitable countries in Latin America.
Fortunately, the guerillas don't belong to this society
and extreme crimes do not regulate the city, rather, they
are rare exceptions. This doesn't mean that you shouldn't
still be cautious; although serious crimes may occur,
you are more likely to be perpetrated by another foreigner,
however, there is always your typical robber who takes
advantage of every opportunity. Because of this, it is
a good idea to carry only what you need; avoid wearing
jewelry or other valuable objects such as watches and
excess money. Furthermore, try not to call attention to
yourself by exposing your camera too much. In general,
the thousands of tourists that have visited the country
over the years have experienced the hospitality of the
people and Bolivian citizens can surely consider themselves
courteous and hospitable, always willing to welcome visitors.
If you consider the hotel in which you
are staying reliable, you should consider leaving objects
of value in the hotel safe; be sure to double check what
you are leaving and sign a receipt that confirms the good
condition of your belongings so that nothing is taken
or replaced. Make sure that the doors and windows to your
room remain closed and secure, and if you leave things
behind in the hotel and take only what you need, remember
not to leave valuables in plain sight or reach of the
housekeeper. In Bolivia there is a division of the national
police force called Policia del Turismo (Tourist Police),
that help and protect all the tourists that visit the
Although Bolivia has had a female president, Lidia Gueiller
Tejada (1979-1980) and a female mayor in La Paz from 1993-1995,
Mónica Medina de Palenque; the male mentality has
not changed very much. The Bolivian, in general, does
not look fondly upon females that are traveling by themselves,
especially from the northern hemisphere, such as the United
States or Europe. They may look at you suspiciously and
have the preconceived notion that these "type of
women" are just like the females that appear in the
foreign magazines and movies, which can become frustrating.
It is okay, perhaps, to remember that this type of behavior
can be attributed to a simple case of ignorance. In any
case, it is always best to walk with somebody at night
in quieter, more remote areas.
La Paz (2)
|Nationwide Search Service
|Bolivian Red Cross
This is a list of suggestions to follow in order to ensure
a safe, hassle-free trip.
- Take a photocopy of your passport, a copy of both
sides of your credit cards and travelers checks. Carry
these copies in another pocket or bag.
- Have your passport, air ticket, credit cards, etc.
in a safe place.
- Don't leave valuables in your hotel room. Bring these
objects to the reception so they can store them in the
- Go to the ATM's in the morning or afternoon and try
to go with another person. If you don't have somebody
to go with, find one with a policeman close by.
- Ask somebody working at the hotel if it is safe to
walk in the area around the hotel and what areas are
dangerous that you should avoid.
- If you travel with expensive equipment, it is best
to obtain extra insurance for it ahead of time.
- Be alert, especially in crowded places.