Is Prague Safe? 7 Important Safety Tips for Travelers

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Scenic View of Vltava River and Historic Bridges, Prague - Serene river scene with iconic bridges and cityscape

Prague, the capital of the Czech Republic, is a city with much to offer. Prague is at the top of most travel bucket lists with its storied history and beautiful architecture. While traveling abroad comes with risks like pickpockets, taxi scams, or food poisoning, you should be fine here if you’re mindful of your surroundings and use common sense.

But is Prague Safe? Yes! As far as travel destinations go, Prague is a pretty safe city. It is one of the safest cities in Europe to visit. The Czech Republic is known for its low crime rates, and the beautiful city of Prague has low violent crime rates.

Regardless of where you go, unsuspecting tourists often struggle the most with travel safety. So, anytime you travel, it’s a good idea to invest in travel insurance. We love SafetyWing because they are an insurance company for nomads, by nomads. Their policies focus on health insurance.

For belongings and mishaps that may happen as you move around the world, AIG Travel Guard is hard to top. Depending on your circumstances, choosing a travel insurance policy depends on which reputable company suits your needs.

To quell any worries you have before you visit Prague, we’re happy to outline how to keep yourself safe because a Czech Republic experience is too good to be missed. Prague is one of my favorite places in the world, and I hope you love it at least half as much as I do.

What is the Crime Rate in Prague?

Police Car in Prague, Czechia
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

One thing that’s important to note for travelers coming from the United States is that Prague’s crime rates are well below that of the US – and that’s particularly true for violent crime. Prague’s murder and sexual assault rates are significantly lower than in the United States. So, this is a very safe city.

However, street crimes like petty theft occur around the city (like anywhere), but for a tourist destination, Prague is extremely safe. Even the petty crime rates here are lower than in the United States:

Metric Czech Republic United States
Total crimes per 1000 36.49 41.29
Intentional homicide rate 1.67 4.7
Murder rate per million people 17.26 42.01
Rapes per million people 45.77 274.04
Source: NationMaster

See Related: 3 Days in Prague Itinerary

How Safe is Prague?

Train in Prague, Czech Republic
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Since the fall of the Iron Curtain in the early 1990s, Prague has been a popular tourist destination. Central Prague boasts magnificent architecture and was less badly damaged than other European cities. And don’t even get me started on Czech cuisine like Řízek.

Even so, petty theft is still prevalent in the city. Some of Prague’s more popular scams involve crimes targeting tourists – specifically solo travelers. These include fake police officers and taxi drivers looking to make a quick buck off unsuspecting visitors.

Most tourists know they must be more wary of petty criminals in train stations or other public transport. But it’s worth repeating because this is where much of the crime will occur.

I never felt unsafe while visiting Prague, even as a queer-presenting traveler. This great city immediately hit the top of my return-to list. Not only will you meet some incredible people in the Czech Republic, but you’ll also walk away with unforgettable memories.

See Related: Virtual Walking Tour of Prague

What Are Some of the Most Dangerous Neighborhoods In Prague?

St. Vitus Cathedral and Prague Castle complex under a dramatic sky
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

As mentioned earlier, Prague’s low crime rates make it safer to visit than the United States. Even so, be more careful at night, particularly if you walk alone in tourist-heavy areas like Wenceslas Square.

A few other neighborhoods you should be a little more aware of at night include Bartolomějská, Benediktská, Holešovice, Malá Strana, and Smíchov. As always, you should use common sense during the daytime because popular tourist destinations (or unpopular ones) also draw criminal activity.

See Related: Vienna vs Prague: What’s the Difference?

How Safe is Public Transportation in Prague?

Busy Prague Main Train Station
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

It depends on what you mean by safe. Like many European cities, Prague’s public transit system is wonderful for getting around.

The buses and trains are clean, and public transit is an economically-friendly option for budget-minded travelers. These are some of the best public transportation systems you’ll find. There is also ample information in English, though knowing basic Czech doesn’t hurt.

When getting off at stops, though, there can be some safety issues, such as men who target solo travelers and female tourists waiting for buses. Sometimes, even a Czech police officer or bogus plain-clothes policemen will be seen hassling people. It’s not always because they’re trying to steal from tourists but sometimes about where they want you to go next so they can scam you with an illegitimate tour package.

It’s always a good idea to avoid hanging around the central train station, either by avoiding it or taking taxis from there. The area is also unsafe for someone who looks like they have money, as pickpockets are also common here – especially around major tourist attractions such as Old Town Square.

Like most public transport, you should avoid taking tram lines, metro stations, and buses late at night or after drinking—particularly crowded trams and buses. Trams attract petty thieves after dark.

See Related: Best Hotels in Prague, Czech Republic

How Safe is Prague Compared to Other Cities?

Firetruck in Prague
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

The Czech Republic is ranked eighth in the Global Peace Index, with “very high” peace and security. There is no violence or fear of violence across three primary domains: Safety and Security, Ongoing Conflict, and Militarisation.

For context, the United States is ranked 129th out of 163 countries on the Global Peace Index. The Czech Republic is above most other European countries, with the only countries ranking higher being Iceland, Ireland, Denmark, Austria, Portugal, and Slovenia.

Studies have even revealed that Prague isn’t just one of the safest cities in Europe; it is considered one of the safest cities in the world. So the question should be, “How safe are other cities compared to Prague?”

See Related: Reasons Why Traveling is Important

Safety Tips for Visiting Prague

Prague Old Town Square with horse-drawn carriage and baroque buildings
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Whether you’ve been to the Czech Republic dozens of times or never before, Prague will be a safe city as long as you do your part too. Just asking if Prague is safe isn’t enough. Even the safest of places can be dangerous for an unsuspecting tourist.

1. Pay Attention

One issue American travelers might encounter is being pickpocketed or robbed when visiting popular attractions crowded with tourists, such as the Astronomical Clock, Old Town Square, and the Charles Bridge. You need to pay careful attention when using public transportation, too.

Anytime you are out in public, particularly enjoying the city’s lively nightlife, you must be aware of your surroundings. This popular destination isn’t just popular for visitors; scammers flock to Prague to prey on distracted tourists.

2. Use Common Sense

Before you roll your eyes at this advice, keep in mind that most visitors are easily distracted. From staring down at our phones on Google Maps to getting wrapped up in exchange rates with foreign currency, tourists are easy targets.

You should always travel with common sense, stay alert to your surroundings no matter where you are, and if something doesn’t feel right, it’s probably not. These tips apply to nearly every situation and are not specific to visiting Prague, but even the very safe Czech Republic can be unsafe:

  • Stay out of the more dangerous neighborhoods
  • Avoid walking alone at night in crowded tourist areas or popular attractions
  • Only travel with a well-known major taxi company

3. Know the Taxi Scams

Is Prague safe? Absolutely. Is Prague safe from scammers? Absolutely not. Even the Czech Republic isn’t safe from people looking to make a quick buck. One of the most common scams in Prague and elsewhere, unfortunately, involves fake taxis and taxi drivers.

For that reason, you should be more aware when trying to arrange private transportation. A few easy ways to avoid being taken advantage of are:

  • Only trust yellow taxis — do not take black cabs that are soliciting riders at airports or train stations
  • Rely on major taxi or rideshare companies like AAA Taxi, Lyft, Uber, and Bolt
  • Trust your intuition if something doesn’t feel right; keep walking if you get a bad feeling about stopping somewhere

4. Get Travel Insurance

Always buy travel insurance before traveling internationally, so use SafetyWing or AIG Travel Guard, or get a quote using TravelInsurance.com to find the best policy. This will help you navigate unfortunate situations (including trip delays or cancellations) that many tourists face.

Insurance won’t just protect you from criminal activity either. Depending on the policy, travel insurance will help you if you get hurt or sick or plans fall through. Some travel insurance policies will get you out of a bind if your belongings are stolen.

Travel insurance is like an umbrella on a day forecasted for rain. You might not need it, but you’ll be incredibly grateful to have it if you do.

5. Use Credit Cards

Food and Beer at Lokal, Prague
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Credit cards can be dangerous when you’re in a “treat yourself” mindset on a vacation. Even so, credit cards have a lot of protections in place for unapproved purchases or identity fraud. They’re unlike debit cards when, if someone spends your money, you may be unable to recoup the stolen funds.

Since the Czech Republic is not on the Euro, exchanging money or buying a money belt is unnecessary. Most places in Prague accept credit cards. If you want some Czech koruna on you anyway, that’s fine. But it’s harder to get pickpocketed if you don’t have cash. Credit cards can easily be canceled or insured if lost or stolen.

6. Drink responsibly

Savoring a Classic Czech Pilsner: Budweiser Budvar against Prague's Iconic Backdrop
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

The Czech Republic, especially Prague, is an enjoyable place and a bit of a party destination because they are known for their excellent (and cheap) Czech beers and bar scene. This beautiful city has a lively party atmosphere that needs to be enjoyed responsibly.

When you’ve spent a lot of time drinking, being vulnerable in public isn’t the only safety concern. Public transportation also becomes a danger in itself, apart from petty theft.

Accidents involving trams can largely be avoided if you imbibe with safety in mind. Or, at the very least, do most of your drinking at or near your hotel so you don’t have far to go.

7. Know the Nearest Police Station

Alt Text: Pedestrians walking on a lit street in Prague at night with a historical building adorned with the word PRAHA.
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Even if you are staying with local hosts, you should know how to reach the nearest Prague police station and emergency services. Getting to the authorities quickly could be a lifesaver if you need to file a report or seek help.

See Related: Czech Republic Travel Guide

Safety Travel Essentials for Prague

Prague Architecture Along the Vltava River
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Prague is one of Europe’s most beautiful places, so you’ll want to prepare yourself with a high-quality camera. New smartphones also have incredible camera capabilities, so you’ll want to bring an external battery so you don’t drain your phone with all the photos and videos. A charged phone is also an important safety consideration in case you need to contact emergency services.

Good shoes are also one of the most important things for Prague’s cobblestone streets. Well-made shoes will protect your feet and hopefully keep you from falling. My recommendation is a pair of Skechers Go Walk Sneakers, which served me well during six weeks of backpacking in Europe.

A few more safety recommendations to add to your Prague packing list:

See Related: Best Things to Do in Prague with Kids

Where to Stay in Prague

Prague Castle over Old Town roofs with tourists
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Prague has a large selection of hostels to suit all budgets and travel interests. For example, Hostel Elf Prague offers dormitories with free high-speed internet. Or NYX Hotel Prague can be found in the city center and close to Prague Castle.

On the other end of the spectrum, Augustine Prague is a five-star hotel in an ancient monastery. The hotel provides elegant rooms with unreal views of Prague Castle. The city has many other hostels and hotels; some favorites are below.

See Related: Best Places to Visit in the Czech Republic

Design Metropol Hotel Prague

Room in Design Metropol Hotel Prague
Design Metropol Hotel Prague / Booking.com

Design Metropol Hotel Prague is near the train stations Národní třída and Mustek. This trendy yet affordable hotel is right in the heart of the city in Old Town Square. Staying here gives you easy access to a lot of the nightlife options Prague has to offer without having to rely on public transportation to get home.

Not to mention, the hotel has room service, a restaurant, and an on-site bar. Plus, you will have lovely city views from Metropol’s terrace — particularly at sunset.

See Related: Affordable Castle Hotels in Europe

Hostel Downtown

Bunk beds in Hostel Downtown
Hostel Downtown / Hotels.com

In traditional hostel fashion, Hostel Downtown features co-ed and gender-segregated dorm rooms. Their female-only dorm rooms are excellent for budget-minded, solo female travelers. Not only can you make friends in the process, but you can also save a pretty penny on your accommodation costs in Prague.

It’s also on a busy street, so you will always find people nearby when you have to come and go. From here, you can walk to Old Town, Wenceslas Square, Charles Bridge, and even Prague Castle — though this one is a hike.

See Related: Do Hotels Take Cash?

Dahlia Inn

Room at Dahlia Inn
Dahlia Inn / Booking.com

The Dahlia Inn is only three and a half blocks from IP Pavlova station. You could reach Old Town in 15 minutes and the river from here within 10 minutes. You’ll be in the New Town neighborhood with easy access to the must-see Prague Jewish Quarter.

You’re only a few minutes away from the Prague Botanical Gardens, Costa Coffee, and half a mile from the Mucha Museum. If you’re a fan of the Art Nouveau aesthetic, you must check out the Mucha exhibits in Old Town Square.

See Related: Different Types of Hotel Rooms

The Dominican

Luxury accomodation in The Dominican
The Dominican / Booking.com

The Dominican is a picturesque hotel with parts of the building dating back to the 1300s. You’ll find touches of vintage beauty throughout the hotel, an homage to the building’s centuries of service. Although it is a stunning property, its prices are moderate and not astronomical, though by looking at the accommodations, you’d think it was a pricey five-star locale.

Since it’s located in Old Town Square, you’re only a stone’s throw from most of Prague’s beloved sites. Imagine stepping outside for a day of adventure and being only hundreds of feet from the oldest working astronomical clock in the world.

See Related: Hotel vs. Motel vs. Inn

Safestay Prague Charles Bridge

Bunk beds at Safestay Prague Charles Bridge
Safestay Prague Charles Bridge / Booking.com

The hostel offers a female-only dorm, mixed dormitory rooms, and various double and twin rooms. Safestay Prague Charles Bridge is in a truly busy place, with the Národní třída metro station a short walk away. Cozy accommodations with some of the lowest prices you’ll find anywhere in Prague, Safestay is a fitting name for a place to lay your head.

Although it’s a bit further from some key locations than other hotels on our list, the Safestay is worth exploring in a part of the city. Plus, you’re only a few blocks from the Vltava River, more specifically, green space near the river where you can enjoy a picnic or watch the water shimmer.

Is Prague Safe to Visit for Solo Female Travelers?

The writer, Amanda Finn, in Old Town Square
Haggerty Photography / ViaTravelers

As one of the safest countries in the world, the Czech Republic is safe for solo female travelers. Unlike many other cities, exploring Prague should not pose any more danger to solo travelers than groups. So long as you mind your surroundings and use common sense, you will most likely be okay.

If your hotel choices are the biggest concern, consider staying somewhere close to public transportation or where you’ll spend the most time. Old Town and New Town will be two areas with the highest population of hotels to choose from. Any of our suggestions above are excellent choices depending on your budgetary needs.

I also highly encourage solo travelers to try and connect with other travelers during their adventures. That way, you’ll have someone to reach out to if you feel unsafe, but also so you don’t get so lonely in The Golden City. You can always use someone to cheers or Na zdraví with!

See Related: Best Museums in Prague, Czechia

Best Time to Visit Prague

Charles Bridge, Prague
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

The best time to visit Prague and its attractions is during the summer (specifically July and August) when the sun sets at about 11 pm and rises at around 3 am for uninterrupted sightseeing throughout the night.

Summer weather in Prague is usually sunny and warm, with temperatures averaging 86 degrees Fahrenheit. The city also hosts a Chill-Out festival every year in July.

That said, peak tourist seasons are the months of May, June, and September. Remember that because these are the most popular times, don’t expect a lot of travel savings.

At the same time, September and October will be more likely to carry deals since tourism slows down as the temperatures dip to an average of 67 degrees Fahrenheit during the day.

See Related: Most Famous Landmarks in the Czech Republic

What to Eat in Prague

Food and Beer at Lokal, Prague
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Several delicious dishes represent traditional Czech cuisines, such as goulash with dumplings and fried cheese curd mixed with potato salad called smažený sýr which is very popular among tourists visiting the city.

As someone with many Czech heritage, I can’t recommend dishes without name-dropping kolaches. These tasty pastries come with a variety of middle fillings, though my favorites are lemon and cream cheese. The traditional filling is prune; you’ll likely see these in hotel breakfast buffets.

If you want to try something that is not traditional, you must visit Old Town Square and buy crepes from one of the many stalls. You can choose from Nutella or strawberries with cream for dessert. Watching them make crepes or even chimney cakes that are divine with ice cream on a hot day is so much fun. (Be sure to grab a napkin, they’re very messy.)

If you love seafood, head to U Karla in Malá Strana, where they serve delicious Czech dishes such as fried goose liver with dried plums or beef steak with roasted potatoes.

Avoid eating at upscale restaurants because the food is costly for not much quality. The best way to eat local in Prague is through street vendors and small cafes that serve traditional dishes made by hand with love.

See Related: Cheap Places to Travel

Final Thoughts: Is Prague Safe to Visit?

People walking and gathering in Prague’s Old Town Square with the Prague Astronomical Clock and the Church of Our Lady before Týn in the background.
Kyle Kroeger / ViaTravelers

Czech authorities claim that the crime rate has decreased in recent years, so much so that the country is largely considered one of the safest in the world, with Prague being one of the safest cities in the world.

Like always, consider getting travel insurance before you go on a trip. We recommend AIG‘s comprehensive travel coverage, whether you’re headed to Prague or anywhere else, or SafetyWing if you plan on living that digital nomad life.

Theft is an issue in other cities and most certainly a problem in Prague. The busiest train cars or bus lines on public transport should be avoided because they can be dangerous — especially if you drink.

If you’re going to drink, make sure you do it in the safety of your own home base or hotel. Wherever possible, try to use a pay-as-you-go phone such as TravelFI or buy a SIM card so that all your data is secure if anything happens to your mobile device.

Don’t leave your devices unattended, like on a cafe table. If you leave your tech in your hotel room during the day, be safe and leave it somewhere out of sight. Utilize the room’s safe if it will help you avoid worry and have a better time.

FAQs

Is Prague safe for tourists?

Absolutely. The Czech Republic, in general, is very safe for tourists. It has very low violent crime rates, though you do need to be mindful of petty crime. Prague is considered one of the safest cities in the world.

Is Prague safe to live in?

For the same reasons as stated above for tourists, Prague is a very safe place to live. Not only that but it is also comparatively much cheaper than other European cities, especially if you want to live there.

What are the safest neighborhoods in Prague?

Because of their vicinity to popular attractions and populated areas, several neighborhoods are considered the safest in Prague. Nove Mesto, Malá Strana, Staré Mesto, Zizkov, Vinohrady, Josefov, Hradcany, and Karlín are generally the safest neighborhoods. But it would be best to still be careful when traveling at night, particularly alone.

Related Resources

Amanda Finn
WRITTEN BY

Amanda Finn

Amanda (she/they) is a Chicago-based queer travel, arts, and lifestyle writer who is passionate about exploring the world. Their work has been featured in Newcity Stage, The Chicago Reader, Huffington Post, and Yahoo, as well as the November 2022 book, "Chicago Like a Local" and other travel journals available on Amazon. Amanda's favorite destinations include Costa Rica, Prague, Dublin, Hong Kong, and every Disney park they've visited.

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