Are there personal security concerns to be aware of at this post? Please describe.

Yes, lots of muggings, robberies, etc. You have to be aware at all times of your surroundings. - Oct 2019


Yes. There is danger. Keep your head on a swivel at all times. - Sep 2019


For the three years I was there I didn't have a problem, but an intern was robbed at gunpoint in Ipanema, a friend was carjacked in the Centro with his fiancee and parents in the car, and a Consular colleague was shot when they stopped on a country road. - Apr 2019


Almost everyone gets mugged. You will constantly watch your back and think about what you carry in public. Some robberies are violent. We regularly hear gunshots. That said, we have been safe so far. - Jun 2017


Most of the consulate housings are in zona sul area, which is safer. I generally feel safe walking around this area and I don't worry that someone will steal my phone. Things like a cell phone are an easy target at the beach so keep your eyes on your phone at touristy area. Don't wear necklaces, if possible. They are easy targets too. - May 2016


Um...yes. Crime is better now than it has been historically but it is definitely still a dangerous city. In the past 2 years, American tourists have been murdered, gang raped, kidnapped and shot. Political unrest is rampant, with 1,000,000 people protesting in the streets in the past few months. Tear gas and riot police are ubiquitous. Buses, cops, firemen, teachers, bank employees...all have gone on strike in the past year. Friends have been held up at knifepoint and gunpoint, some people more than once. Pickpocketing is very frequent. Credit and debit card cloning is rampant. The ONLY safe ATM machine is inside the CG. Bus drivers are psychotic and will regularly run red lights, skip stops, drop passengers in the middle of traffic etc. Traffic fatalities are among the highest in the world. - Aug 2013


YES. Every week you hear of someone else being mugged or robbed or stopped in an arrastao. These are essentially road blocks set up by armed thugs where they just walk from car to car and take your belongings. If they really like it, they can even try to take your car. - Jun 2011


Lots. One has to be prepared not to wear a watch and not to carry a wallet or any other valuables unless you are fully ready to part with them. There are regular incidents of expatriates -- as well as tourists -- being attacked or carjacked. This can happen anywhere in the city. - Jul 2010


I don't find it any worse than other big cities I've lived in (NY, Mexico City, Nairobi, London) but security is a much bigger issue than in small-town USA.The much-publicized high homicide rate is true, but most of those happen in the poor favelas where they do not have government services and a police presence. There is quite a bit of tourist-related crime in the city so you really really should not carry expensive or important things like your passport with you when you go out and about. That said - this is an outdoor city and walking along the well-lit sidewalks next to the beaches in the main tourist areas is common any time of day, late in the night and early in the morning and if you look like you're jogging/walking as opposed to carrying your vacation money and camera you should be OK.I do not, however, walk down by the water at night after it's dark - I stick to the well-lit sidewalks. Also do not carry/use cell phone/ipod much when walking alone in public, etc. though lots of others do. - Jun 2010


Rio is a dangerous place, no doubt, but you just have to be careful and give up what you have if targeted. - Nov 2009


Lots. Armed robberies in broad daylight on crowded streets are common as are carjackings and kidnappings in which victims are taken to ATMs and forced to withdraw money. As if this weren't enough, there is the omnipresent danger of a taking a stray bullet due to the ongoing war between drug dealers and the police. All this being said however, I personally never had any problems although I witnessed a double murder in front of the Consulate one afternoon. - Jan 2009


New book from Talesmag! Honest and courageous stories of life abroad with special needs.

Read More