top of page

6 Ways to Feel Safer in Cape Town, South Africa

Despite how dangerous everyone says Cape Town is, I didn’t feel unsafe once. As a female traveller from Canada,

I recently spent two months living and working in Cape Town as a digital nomad from January to March in 2022. Staying safe in Cape Town basically comes down to being aware of your surroundings. Use common sense, and trust your instincts. I have gathered my top tips for the best ways to ensure a safe and enjoyable stay in Cape Town.

I followed these simple steps and I suggest you do the same, no matter where you are travelling in the world.

1. Don’t walk alone.

It’s best to commute in groups if possible. If you need to go somewhere alone, stick to busy areas during the day and share your location with a friend or family member. In Cape Town, it is important to take extra precautions to stay safe. Whenever possible, avoid walking alone and instead travel in groups with friends or family. If you do need to go somewhere alone, stick to busy areas during the day and share your location with a trusted friend or family member. Avoid shortcuts and stick to well-lit, well-travelled routes. If you feel threatened or unsafe, seek help from local authorities. Taking these simple steps will help ensure your safety when travelling in Cape Town.

2. Uber everywhere after dark.

Cape Town is a beautiful city, but it’s important to take safety precautions while exploring. You'll want to take in the beautiful sunsets because they are like nothing I've ever seen before but once the sun goes down, make sure you have a plan! To stay safe while travelling after dark, it’s best to use Uber. Ubers are super affordable and there are plenty of them. Make sure to download the app before you land. Before requesting your ride, make sure you check the driver’s profile and check the ratings from past customers. You can also share your trip status with a friend or family member so they know where you are and when you arrive. Additionally, it’s best to stay in well-lit areas and avoid walking alone. If you’re out late at night, avoid dark alleys and shady areas. Finally, make sure you have a fully charged phone with you in case of an emergency. With these tips, you can confidently get to where you need to go in Cape Town after dark.

3. Use a cross-body bag.

Not only are they great for walking around and exploring but all of your valuables are kept close to you and it’s not easy to grab. When travelling in Cape Town, or anywhere, there are a few safety tips to keep in mind. If a situation feels off or unsafe, try to avoid it. When out and about, make sure to keep your valuables close to you, preferably in a cross-body or belt bag that is difficult to grab. Make sure to stay aware of your surroundings at all times and avoid carrying large amounts of cash or other valuables. Basically, just don't be flashy. Additionally, be aware of the pickpocketing and purse snatching that is common in tourist destinations so be sure to keep your wallet and phone in a secure pocket.

4. Lock the doors in your Uber and keep the windows halfway up.

When using an Uber, it is also important to lock the doors and keep the windows halfway up. This will help to deter any potential thieves from targeting you, as it is more difficult to grab items from a car when the windows are rolled up. I know this might seem a bit ridiculous but if you're stopped at a red light and you stick your phone out of the window to take a picture, it's not hard for someone to grab it. Additionally, you should be aware of your phone and make sure it is not visible or accessible to potential thieves.

5. Don't be flashy.

Keep flashy valuables tucked away when not in use. Don’t put your phone in your back pocket or somewhere where it can easily be swiped. It’s best not to be flashy or seem careless with your valuables.

6. Simply use common sense.

Keep your wits about you, enjoy the beauty that surrounds you, and if something feels off, trust your gut and remove yourself from the situation. Be kind to everyone! We encountered many amazing locals that made our trip quite memorable. By doing these simple things you can help ensure a safe and enjoyable trip to Cape Town.

Honestly, South Africa is one of my most favourite places I've ever travelled to. I would go back and live there in a heartbeat. Stay tuned for so many more blog posts on my 2 months there because I just can't get enough.

I wouldn't suggest driving in Cape Town but we did end up renting a pretty big rig to do the Garden Route which I would highly recommend! It's a pretty well-known route from the Western Cape to the Eastern Cape and there are sooo many cool little towns that you can travel through and stay in. I will be doing a full separate post on the Garden Route!


bottom of page