Cox's Bazar presents itself as relatively safe for solo female travelers. There is a good presence of security forces, particularly in areas of high tourism like the beach. Many of the hotels and restaurants cater to foreign tourists, so they maintain good safety standards. However, caution is always advised, especially at night. Also, cultural differences can affect the perception of safety, as it is a conservative country, so it's important to dress modestly and follow local customs.
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How safe is Cox's Bazar?
Safety at nightModerate
As a traveler, you must maintain a basic level of caution when traveling to Cox's Bazar, especially at night. While the area is generally safe, due to a significant presence of tourists and locals, it is still recommended not to walk unaccompanied during the night. Because it's a busy tourist spot, pickpocketing and other minor crimes can occur, particularly in crowded areas. It's preferable to travel in a group and stick to well-lit, populated areas to ensure safety.
Cox's Bazar in Bangladesh primarily uses auto-rickshaws, known as CNG, and regular rickshaws for public transportation. These are abundant, easily reachable, and fairly easy to navigate. However, it is advisable to haggle as drivers tend to charge more to foreigners. Pickpocketing is a concern on crowded transports, so keep your valuables close and hidden. Also, consider the traffic congestion in the city that may impact travel time. While the inherent risks are minimal, it is always essential for every traveler, regardless of gender, to be proactive about personal safety.
Cox's Bazar, as with many other destinations in Bangladesh, demands a sense of vigilance but the level of street harassment isn't particularly acute. The local people are generally courteous and helpful. However, it's good to be aware of your surroundings and ensure you dress conservatively to respect the local culture. Taking regular safety precautions should suffice in making your travel experience smooth.
Overall, Cox's Bazar presents a moderate risk of petty crimes. This includes pickpocketing, bag snatching and scams, particularly in crowded areas and tourist hubs. It is advisable to be attentive to your belongings, avoid flashing out valuables and keep essential documents in a safe place. These precautions can significantly reduce the likelihood of falling victim to such offenses.
Drinking tap water directly in Cox's Bazar may not be absolutely safe, especially for foreign travelers. The water quality can vary, and it may contain bacteria or parasites that could cause stomach issues, even though locals may be used to it. It is advisable to rely on bottled water, purified water or use a water purification tablet for safe consumption.
Is Bangladesh safe right now?
Travel to Bangladesh should come with increased vigilance. Visitors are advised to stay alert due to crime and the threat of terrorism. Be aware that political demonstrations and national general strikes can happen, often leading to violent confrontations. The upcoming general elections may also stir up civil unrest. Exercise a high degree of caution, stay informed about the current political situation, avoid large gatherings or protests, and follow the advice of local authorities.
United States Travel AdvisoryExercise a high degree of caution
The United States Government advises to exercise increased caution in Bangladesh due to crime, terrorism, and the upcoming general election. Some areas present an increased risk. Check the full travel advisory.
Last updated: October 12, 2023
Canada's Travel AdvisoryExercise a high degree of caution
The Canadian Government advises exercising a high degree of caution in Bangladesh. This is due to threats of terrorism, political demonstrations, national general strikes, and violent clashes. Check the full travel advisory.
Last updated: February 26, 2024
Australia's Travel AdvisoryExercise a high degree of caution
The Australian government advises to exercise a high degree of caution overall in Bangladesh, due to the threat of terrorism and civil unrest. Check the full travel advisory.