Is Shymkent Safe for Solo Female Travelers?

Shymkent is generally safe for solo female travelers. The locals are friendly and helpful, and public transportation and taxi services are reliable. Violent crime against foreigners is relatively rare. However, like everywhere else, always remain vigilant, especially at night and in less crowded areas. It is also important to respect local customs and traditions to ensure a smooth journey.

Safety rating

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How safe is Shymkent?

Safety at nightModerate

Shymkent is generally a safe city with low crime rates. However, as with any location, travellers should remain vigilant, particularly at night. It is still recommended to avoid poorly lit areas, to be cautious of your surroundings, and not necessarily to walk alone at night if possible, to minimize any potential risk.

Public transportationSafe

Public transportation in Shymkent is generally quite reliable and safe. Buses are frequent and reach most parts of the city and intercity services are also available. Marshrutkas (shared minibuses) are a common form of transportation, but they can get crowded at times. While minor pickpocketing incidents can occur, this is rare as locals are often kind and helpful. Remember to avoid displaying expensive items and always keep an eye on your belongings. Services usually operate from early morning until late evening.

Street harassmentLow

In Shymkent, you'll find that the locals are generally sociable and willing to help. Street harassment is relatively low compared to some other destinations, offering a comfortable travel experience overall. However, it is still important to exercise typical travel precautions, like avoiding walking alone at night in less frequented areas.

Petty crimesLow

Shymkent generally has a lower crime rate, particularly when it comes to petty crimes. However, it is always wise to stay vigilant. Pickpocketing and bag snatching can occur, especially in crowded markets or public transport. It's best to avoid displaying expensive items and always keep a close eye on your belongings. But overall, the city is considered relatively safe for travelers.

Tap waterUnsafe

The tap water in Shymkent is generally not recommended for consumption, especially for those who are not used to it. It may contain bacteria or other substances that could potentially cause stomach upset or gastrointestinal problems. It is often best to purchase and consume bottled water, which is widely available. It's also suggested to use treated or boiled water for brushing teeth. While some locals may consume the tap water without problems, visitors, especially those with sensitive digestion, should tend to be more cautious.

Is Kazakhstan safe right now?

When planning to travel to Kazakhstan, exercise a high degree of caution due to potential civil unrest reported. Follow standard precautionary measures as advised by the U.S. and Canadian Governments. Stay informed about local conditions, avoid large crowds and demonstrations, and abide by all instructions issued by local authorities. Ensure you have comprehensive travel insurance and your trip details are known by someone not traveling with you. Always keep personal belongings and travel documents in a secure location.
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United States Travel AdvisoryTake normal security precautions

The United States government advises exercising normal precautions in Kazakhstan. Check the full travel advisory.
Last updated: June 30, 2023
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Canada's Travel AdvisoryTake normal security precautions

The Canadian Government advises taking normal security precautions in Kazakhstan. Check the full travel advisory.
Last updated: January 25, 2024
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Australia's Travel AdvisoryExercise a high degree of caution

The Australian Government advises to exercise a high degree of caution in Kazakhstan due to the risk of civil unrest. Check the full travel advisory.
Last updated: August 4, 2023

Is Shymkent safe to visit?

Is Shymkent safe to live?

Safety in Kazakhstan