Is Seattle safe for new travelers?
U.S.A is one of the best countries in the world for tourism. Whether you’re visiting like a first-timer or you’re living like a local.
Although many tourists go for the typical cities, LA, NYC, or Chicago, there are always alternative cities that visitors deem as even better.
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Is Seattle Safe?
Seattle is such a huge part of American culture, but never really receives a positive reputation.
America can be considered quite similar to other English-speaking countries such as New Zealand or Australia in terms of culture and quality of life, so visitors know what to expect.
The big question though, is whether this is the same for a city like Seattle?
It’s viewed as one of the more remote cities in the country, being in the northwest of America. Is it safe?
Let’s find out!
How Safe is Seattle?
Whereas many cities in America have a consistent crime rate, Seattle is currently a very special case.
Even as recent as 4 or 5 years ago, we would’ve called Seattle one of the safest cities in the western hemisphere.
However, due to the political situation in America today, there’s no telling when the next protest will be and how bad it will get.
Seattle is known as the “Emerald City” and is the most populous city in Washington state. It is said that there is a 1 in 152 chance of being a victim of violent crime in Seattle.
Get a FREE travel insurance quote from SafetyWing to get the right (and timely) support when it comes to protecting yourself in Seattle.
Seattle Crime Rate
- Homicides in Seattle increased from 34/100k in 2019 to 53/100k in 2020.
- Murder is below the national average, but violent crime is above the national average.
- Most of the crime occurring during the first pandemic lockdown has dwindled.
- Washington state set a record for homicides in 2020, with 302. That topped the previous high of 297, from 1994.
- Adjusted for population, this is still is lower than 1994. But that rate jumped an unprecedented 45% due to the pandemic.
Is Seattle Safe For Tourists?
Seattle is a safe city for most people, but that doesn’t mean you should let your guard down. Even when on the hop-on/hop-off bus for that matter.
Common sense dictates you shouldn’t leave your smartphone in plain view in a locked car and expect it to remain there, etc.
Even busy areas of the city have smash-and-grab thefts, so lock your car doors and don’t leave visible temptation.
We checked the Visit Seattle website, and this is what they had to say:
After fifteen long months, Seattle is OPEN.
Thanks to increased vaccination rates, Washington state businesses were permitted to reopen at full capacity as of June 30. Seattle, the first major American city to fully vaccinate 70% of residents 12 and older, is safely welcoming back visitors. Travelers to Seattle—and all destinations—should continue to observe the health recommendations of national and local public health officials, as they plan to travel, while in transit, and while visiting any destination.”
Where To Stay in Seattle
Seattle is quite limited in choices for staying compared to the likes of New York City or other cities like Los Angeles or Chicago.
Most visitors decide that Downtown is the only option, but we’re here to tell you otherwise! Check out the following neighborhoods instead:
For many, Queen Anne is the most pleasurable neighborhood, not only for people who are relocating to Seattle but for visitors too. The rooftop views at the The Mediterranean make you not want to leave.
A haven for art lovers and if you’re into Queen Anne Avenue’s selection of shops and Specialty coffee cafes then you’re in luck. This is a great base if it’s your first time in Seattle.
As Seattle’s most densely populated neighborhood you won’t have trouble meeting like-minded friends here.
Aside from the luxury stays at Hotel Ändra it is home to many nightclubs and live-music venues you can find a place to dance the night away.
1st and 2nd avenues have some of the city’s buzzing atmospheres -especially during the early evenings.
Seattle: Travel Safety Tips
- If you find yourself in a situation where you feel unsafe, always remember to dial 9-1-1.
- The emergency services in Washington just in general are incredible, always helpful, and never ignore calls. Make sure you only use the number when it’s an emergency situation and stay safe.
- Never let your drink out of your sight and don’t sample drinks from anyone – even friends or acquaintances.
- Seattle doesn’t target tourists but don’t assume you won’t be pickpocketed in crowded areas.
- if you are visiting on a budget, or, prefer to spend your funds elsewhere consider staying in one Seattle’s top-rated hostels for a truly unique experience.
- Do not carry a weapon for self-defense, as introducing a weapon can increase the severity of an attack.
- Carry cash and valuables in a front or inside pocket and consider if you need to carry a purse or bag. A Pacsafe is good choice for concealing your valuables.
- See more safety tips on preventing drug-facilitated sexual assaults.
- Alcohol and “date rape” drugs are used in many sexual assaults – if you are going to drink, do so responsibly and be with trusted friends so you can look out for each other.
- Always have a cell phone along with you, if you have one.
- Make sure you find out if there are any protests or demonstrations before traveling.
- Stay alert, stand tall and be confident, if an attacker targets someone, they’re most likely scared.
Overall, you won’t need to abide by any rules or advice for safety.
Seattle has hardly any crime towards tourists, so imagine yourself at your own place of personal safety at home.
Don’t do anything you wouldn’t do at home, and don’t put yourself in harm’s way.
Best Time To Visit Seattle
We went to our trusted source on all things meteorological, Travel US News:
“The best time to visit Seattle is from September to October.
Summer marks the city’s high season, meaning room rates rise and availability drops, while cold winter weather can deter even the most avid sightseers.
Early fall, however, is a sweet spot for tourism: Summer weather lingers as the crowds disperse, leaving plenty of hotel rooms (and lower rates) up for grabs.
Meanwhile, spring offers lower lodging rates as well as warmer temps, but you’ll likely encounter some rain and cooler breezes.
Just remember to pack the appropriate attire to battle chilly winds and yes, the seemingly ever-present drizzle.”
Here are some key events in Seattle to consider:
- Bumbershoot (September)
- Earshot Jazz Festival (October-November)
- Seattle Restaurant Week (October-November)
Is Seattle Safe? Final Words
Overall, there is nothing to worry about if you’re looking for a grunge-style hangout in Seattle.
It’s a very safe city with great record stores and coffee shops.
It really is an introvert’s dream. You may have a perception of danger due to the news reports, but this is largely untrue!
What do you think? Book your trip to Seattle today and follow our sustainable travel tips if you’re not already familiar with them.
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