Latin American countries do not exactly always get good press with regard to personal safety and security. Yet most tourists travel to Ecuador without incident each year, so safety in Ecuador is perfectly possible. When people take common sense measures to avoid issues, most safety issues in Ecuador can be avoided. Here are some of our tips for safety in Ecuador while travelling in this South American country.
One of the most common personal safety issues in Ecuador is pickpocketing or robbery in public places. Pickpockets in Ecuador work in crowded places, as they do in many countries all over the world. This issue is likely to impact on traveler safety in Quito or in Guayaquil, or on busy buses or transport. Taking care with your personal belongings can help with minimizing any impact that these individuals or groups can have on you. One very simple step that you can take to reduce the impact of such an event is to not carry too much money or too many valuables on you in the first place. Take only the money and/or card and ID you might need for your outing and leave the rest locked up safely in your hotel safe. Ecuador is likely a cheaper place than your country of residence, so don’t carry unnecessary money – our guides at Ecuador and Galapagos Insiders are happy to give guidance in this regard. The less you have on you, the less you have to lose if something does happen.
The same is true of expensive items such as jewelry, watches, electronics, cameras. In fact, with jewelry and watches unless there is some compelling reason you need to bring them with you, they may be better left at home. After all, as well as the chance of theft, there is also the possibility they could get damaged or lost on the trip. As well as being careful with money while out and about, flashing around expensive items, or being careless with them can lead to pickpocketing, petty theft or robbery.
Your safety in Quito is likely to be higher if you do not leave your bag on the back of your chair at a restaurant, or if you do not put your smartphone on the table for all to see. Keep expensive items tucked away where you can keep a close eye on them, and be aware of where they are. Pickpockets in Ecuador are likely to be tempted by items that can be seen. In crowded areas such as markets, make sure that any bag you are carrying is held on your front rather than your back, so you can keep an eye on it.
Safety in Quito and other parts of Ecuador is also increased by being careful with public transport choices. Walking the streets at night in bigger cities is certainly not recommended, and neither is walking along beaches at night. Doing so will make you stand out as a target for robbery or other unpleasant situations. Taking taxis, unfortunately, can also lead to risk. In general, it is better to take a taxi than to walk, but flagging a taxi down in the street is not a good idea. If you are at a restaurant or bar, it is better to get that establishment to call you a taxi. Where possible try not to take buses late at night, and be sure to sit near the front, paying attention to your belongings at all times.
Other aspects of safety in Ecuador include safety when carrying out activities. Ecuador is a wonderful place to take part in all kinds of fun, outdoor activities such as hiking, rafting, climbing, mountain biking, rappelling and lots more. For some visitors to Ecuador these may be the main reason for going. While all of these activities are inherently risky, it is important to select a reputable provider to lower your risk of having safety issues in Ecuador.
Ask providers of activities about their qualifications and experience. Also, make sure you check out the equipment before setting off on your adventurous activity, or it could end up being a lot more exciting than you anticipated or wanted. Ecuador and Galapagos Insiders works with reputable operators, but there are plenty of other activity providers, and not all are experienced or qualified. Taking care to check out the situation is important. To browse reputable Galapagos Cruises and the best Galapagos tours you can follow this link and choose the best option for your particular case.
Again, safety in Ecuador is not an issue for most travelers to Ecuador, and most visits occur without incident. Applying a bit of common sense is important to avoid running into issues – such as not carrying a lot of expensive valuables and if you are, not flashing them about. If you’re travelling with Ecuador and Galapagos Insiders we can offer you tips before you travel, and our guides are happy to give advice when you’re on your tour to help ensure that your trip passes off without incident.