Safety Tips for the Best Nighttime Experience on Your Next Vacation!


Bright lights shine upon ancient cathedrals, cobblestone streets overflow with excited locals, and hidden cafes serve stronger drinks by the hour. That’s just some of what to expect when exploring a foreign city at nighttime, and from Paris’ jazz-filled lounges to Moscow’s neon center, nighttime is the best time to explore your destination. However, it’s always important to stay safe while traveling, and nighttime can often seem highly unpredictable while abroad. With these tips, you will be able to safely enjoy yourself anytime and anywhere!

Know About Emergency Services

Wherever you travel, it’s important to know the local numbers of emergency services. Your trip is likely to go smoothly, but it’s always good to be prepared just in case. Especially at nighttime, you may see someone else who needs assistance, and simply dialing for an ambulance could save their life. Before trekking out to explore the city lights, make a small note to keep in your wallet that details:

  • The number for local police
  • The number for local medical services
  • The number for a medical transport service in case of a severe emergency

Now that you’re prepared for anything, it’s time to step out into the night!

Nightlife With a Language Barrier

You can easily enjoy nightlife anywhere in the world without knowing the local language; however, you may want to study up a bit on simple words for beer and other drinks. While ordering should not be a problem, and neither should making small-talk with some English-speaking locals, you should be aware of your surroundings nonetheless. While English will likely invite curious strangers, it may also attract the wrong type of attention. Bars around the world can be host to people looking for a fight, and your language can put you on their radar. Luckily, you can avoid these people by ordering or speaking away from them. To find out what type of person to avoid, simply look for:

  • Those acting louder or more disorderly
  • Anyone falling over or dropping things
  • Someone being overly pushy

Alcohol will enhance people’s emotions, and their overly fun attitude may switch to an overly aggressive one quite quickly. Don’t be afraid of meeting great people especially since the majority are likely to be great. Just avoid those that act out of the ordinary to avoid any problems. In some cases, even yelling at a bar can bring the police. In some countries especially around Eastern Europe, the police may demand bribes in order to be left alone. By minimizing your presence and joining well-behaved groups, you’ll have a greater time wherever you go!

times_squareDetermining Shady Areas

Nighttime provides a beautiful glimpse into a city’s culture. The lights enhance and mask the buildings in vibrant ways, music pours out from clubs, and the streets are filled with adventurous energy. While you can generally be safe by following the crowds, there are some ways to determine the areas to avoid.

Whether you’re a guy or girl, pay attention to where women walk. Groups of local women are less likely to venture down unsafe alleys or boulevards, and you are advised to do the same. While parks are beautiful in the daytime, they are often places for the homeless at night which can make them potentially unsafe. You want to generally stay on the beaten path at night, and while that Gothic alleyway in downtown Barcelona may look enticing, understand that there may be pickpockets waiting for a drunk tourist. If you see people dancing and having fun, then by all means go. If you’re the only one walking, then maybe it’s time to return back.

Letting Go While Maintaining Alertness

This guide is not supposed to get you nervous; in fact, by preparing for anything, you will have a great time since nothing bad is likely to happen! While some cities are undoubtedly safer than others, it’s important to still keep your wits whether you’re in Tokyo or Santiago. To do this, you can read about some common local scams before you arrive in your next destination. Ask the hotel concierge for any tips or advice before heading out at night as well. They can tell you certain things to avoid along with recommending the best ways to return after your adventure.

While thieves are generally the same everywhere, their methods are different and it’s important to understand each cultural variant. In a city like Valparaiso, thieves are likely to be more confrontational and demanding. In Beijing, thieves will often be seem innocent. As opposed to using force, thieves in Beijing will likely use a young and attractive girl to invite you to a tea house. You’ll order tea and have a nice conversation, and then an outrageous $500 bill will come. This is an unfortunate situation, but you can simply walk out instead of feeling guilt into paying like most tourists do. In Budapest, many strip clubs and bars operate on this same inflated-price scam. You can still let go and enjoy the night, but always remember that if it’s too good to be true, then there’s likely a hefty price. By utilizing these tips, you are guaranteed to have the time of your life at any hour!



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