Please sign in to post.

Safety in Budapest?

Are both sides of Budapest equally safe? We are staying on the Pesh side and have been warned by a former resident that this side of the city is not as safe as the Buda side. Thank for your help!

Posted by
14419 posts

Either side of the Danube is probably safer than Franklin, TN. Pest side is the "downtown". Wonderful city and trying to figure out why anyone would say one side is "safer" than the other.

Posted by
8882 posts

Can't imagine where that comment came from. Budapest's crime rate is remarkably low ... on both sides of the river ... Buda and Pest. Of course there are some less than desirable neighborhoods all over town, but for the most part they are remote from the areas where tourists stay.

And Buda is the suburbs (except for castle hill) and Pest is the "downtown" and where you want to stay for convenience to 90% of the major sights

Posted by
1903 posts

I have always felt safe in both sides, often out at night on the Pest side and during the day I have ventured far from the tourist areas with no sense of impending doom—on the contrary, the Hungarians have always been very helpful if I needed directions.

Posted by
304 posts

I traveled around the tourist areas of Pest in October, solo female traveler, and felt absolutely safe with just normal precautions. I took trams along the river to see the lights after dark. The area near the basilica was bustling and lively in the evenings, as were most of the streets in the tourist area. I never felt any concern.

Posted by
8882 posts
Posted by
295 posts

Thanks so much....we are on our way there on Saturday......t

Posted by
295 posts

Thanks so much....we are on our way there on Saturday......this comment was made to us by a gal that checked us out of our Hallstatt hotel when she asked us where we were going. She was a former resident.

Posted by
11259 posts

I would much rather pick Budapest to wander around in than SF. Of course, my geographic scope up to now in Budapest is still pretty limited.

Posted by
18 posts

I would have to add that Budapest is safer than anywhere in the USA, and ive been out and about at night and in very deserted parts of the city and not felt in danger.
In fact in all the months I have spent exploring Budapest I have never witnessed any crime.

Posted by
8882 posts

I would have to add that Budapest is safer than anywhere in the USA,

I love Budapest, I know how safe it is. But that doesn't make your statement statistically correct.

https://www.numbeo.com/crime/compare_cities.jsp?country1=United+States&country2=Hungary&city1=Boise%2C+ID&city2=Budapest&tracking=getDispatchComparison

So let's not get reckless and careless. Im sort of related to the tourist industry so I hear a lot of stories each year. I have never met or heard of someone being pickpocketed in Bpest, but you know it has to happen on crowded subways. Burglaries are a bit of a problem in some parts of town, but I understand it's getting better. I have been offered "new" IPhones for sale by nervous looking "street vendors" on a couple of ocassions. Antisemitism is 2 to 3 times the rate in the US (typical for much of Europe). The outer part of District VIII can be a bit dicey, but worth the time to visit, just be aware at all times and it's probably no worse than most of Chicago.

G-d that was negative! Sorry. Basically every open street in the parts of Bpest you are likely to visit is as comfortable and probably generally as safe as my gated community in the US.

Posted by
84 posts

Let's not forget that the USA is much larger and more diverse country than Hungary. It may be true that Budapest is safer than any large city of the USA(although I think Anchorage must be pretty safe, not?), but there are thousands of small towns in the USA, actually whole states(Alaska, Vermont, Montana?) I think which are way safer than Budapest or Hungary in general.

I had an English teacher from Colorado and we were totally stunned when he told us that the small town he lives in people don't close the front door of their houses and leave the cars open on the street.

That's when I learned not to think or talk about the USA in black or white, because it's simply way too large, to be simply like this or that. It has everything and the opposite as well.

Leave your rose tinted glasses at home when coming to Budapest, but use your common sense and you'll be fine.

Posted by
1364 posts

We have just been in Athens. In Athens, there are a ton of pickpockets, there are refugees begging everywhere, there are refugees selling junk in the markets. We continually felt targeted and unsafe.

In Budapest, things are great. I don't feel unsafe at all. Perhaps I am being silly, but the situation in Buda-Pest is more controlled than in Athens.

Posted by
3488 posts

I could write volumes about the sentiments in the post above. Bottom line, refugees are not dangerous and painting them as an unsafe element is harmful.

Posted by
1031 posts

I guess it's all about perception wherever we travel. After traveling throughout Europe and other parts of the world, I have never felt uncomfortable. 2 years ago we traveled in Greece.
We never felt unsafe. Looking forward to Budapest in a few months and embracing the culture and diversity in Central Europe and beyond.

Posted by
3488 posts

Locals always blame the foreigners. You really believe a local security guard who has every reason to blame refugees? Statistics consistently show that locals are the perps.

Posted by
1997 posts

Nigel, Thanks for the chart comparison on crime. I love visuals and facts. Good to see that there are reasonably safe places in the US, as I am tired about the generalizations that anyway in Europe is safer than the US. And being a Bostonian I really like that chart!

However, that being said, woman have a different sense of safety than men due to the added dangers to women in general. Men usually don't see the dangers that women see. I operate differently at night than my husband does. To some degree, most everywhere will have more dangers for women than men. However, that doesn't stop us. And in the Budapest case, the Pest side might not be as safe as the Buda side, but both might be safe in comparison to other places.

Posted by
224 posts

One thing to remember about numbeo's charts is that the methodology behind them is shaky at best.
For starters, it's all self-reported, so it is basically the glorified "I never felt unsafe" vs. "I had a bad day and I really hate this place".
Even with that said, for most non-US locations the numbers of those polled are ridiculously low, resulting in stats that are potentially misleading (just as an example, Moscow's rating is based on about 500 responses, which amounts to about 0.003% of the city's population).
Lastly, the numbers are really easy to manipulate - all you need is some determination, free time, and a bunch of IP addresses.

Posted by
224 posts

Well, what it ultimately proves is that people are way more willing to trust something that is presented in the form of a pie chart or has a web link associated with it...

Posted by
11259 posts

@ James... I go by statistics and evidence. In history that's called quantification buttressed by evidence. The pie charts and web links I'm not interested in. I would be surprised if BP's gritty areas are as dumpy, and I mean dumpy, as are parts of SF, if any these BP gritty area exceed those in SF. As long as I know I won't get jumped in streets or get " jacked American style," I myself see BP as safe, maybe in some areas with more caution, but safe...period.

Posted by
8882 posts

I agree, but these guys want absolutes. Are you as safe in the tourist zones of San Fransisco as an orthodox Jew is in the tourist zones of Paris? I have no idea. Is a woman safer at Carnival in Cologne or New Orleans? Again, no idea. Or you in Cairo vs two men holding hands in Moscow? Again, no idea. How much petty theft = a mugging? How many muggings to a murder? Just how do you judge? "I felt safe"? The passengers on that Egyptian tour bus a few weeks ago probably felt safe. Of course that only happens a couple of times a year, so how many exploding busses = unsafe (I would still go).

I have no problem walking at night in a third of my home town. There is another third where I would hide till sunrise. The final third I would walk, but would rather my kids not. My worst third that I never need to visit is someone else's daily reality. So is my town safer than LA? Depends.

As for Budapest, I noticed 15 years ago that single women had no fear of walking home alone late at night in much of the town. That's decent evidence of either safety or different cultural expectations. Dont know. Even I realize the links I posted were problematic. But I didn't notice any pie charts. Hmmmmm. What's the word I am looking for Fred? Still, it was a place to start. While it may have only represented .0003% of the population, even that is better than the opinion of 1 individual.

Posted by
8882 posts

I arrive in Bpest in about 12 hours, and now I am afraid!!!!!

Naaaa, I've spent the equivalent of 18 months there over the last 20 years. I've done some pretty stupid things while there. And I never had the tiniest problem with crime.

Posted by
295 posts

Returned home from Budapest a week ago....it was WONDERFUL. I have no idea why the hotel clerk in Austria said she had grown up in Budapest and was warning us of the danger......there was no danger and we felt completely safe. Hope others will read this and enjoy this beautiful city!

Posted by
11259 posts

How about the "inexactitude?"

Most places daytime I would walk through solo in SF, but there are parts I would not, such as " the projects" (some) way out there.

Those areas I would go because I'm used to it, however gritty, dumpy, urban blight, you name it, I know the streets, where is where w/o a map or Smartphone. Plus, you develop a feel for a place. A place may be considered safe, etc until some shooting happens out of the blue and you get hit by a ricochet bullet totally unintended for you.

Posted by
11259 posts

In SF if one appeared as an Orthodox Jew, no one cares or would even bat an eye,

Posted by
11259 posts

What happened in Cologne on that New Year's Eve did not take place only Cologne, those incidents took place in other cities too, such as Bielefeld. Cologne got the most media coverage.