Portugal and Lisbon

Portugal is the Westernmost country of Europe, and one of the most isolated (it only shares a border with Spain). Because of that, it has a very unique culture, a beautiful coast on the Atlantic, as well as some isolated islands such as Madeira and the Azores. It is currently one of the top destinations in Europe.

Portugal is very safe overall, with a low crime rate, although some cities have some dangerous areas that tourists should better avoid.

City Safe has compiled information from numerous sources make sure you have a safe trip in Portugal and Lisbon and be aware of all potential dangers.

Portugal is the 13th safest country in the world, based on the safest and most dangerous countries ranking.


Portugal Safety Index: Very Safe

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Is Portugal A Safe or Dangerous Country?

Portugal is one of the safest European countries. Crimes rates are very low and often concern a few isolated neighborhoods. It is ranked 13th on the ranking of world’s safest countries.

The main issues are pickpockets in touristic areas and mugging in some dangerous of areas of Lisbon and Porto.

Pickpockets are present in crowded streets, train, bus and subway stations, and bag-snatchers or thieves operate in restaurants.

Beaches are also common targets for thieves: never leave any valuable unattended when you go swimming.

While on the beach, always check the warning flags before going to swim : every year, people die from strong oceanic currents.

If you travel by car, never leave any valuable in it – especially if it is a rental car : thieves occasionally operate on parking areas.

Protect your personal belongings at all times, especially your ID and passport. Petty crime, like bag snatching and pick pocketing, is a serious problem around touristic areas and on public transport.


There is a national toll-free number for emergencies, the 112.


For more details, see city specific advice or take a look at our travel articles.


Is Lisbon a Safe or Dangerous city?

Lisbon is a safe city to visit or live, although travelers are often targets of petty crime.

Pickpocketing happen at crowded places and public transport such as the cable cars, trams (be careful on trams n°15 and 28). The airport, bus and train station are also frequently targeted by group of pickpockets.

Mugging can happen at night in some neighborhoods such as Bairro Alto and Santos (see the map), or while taking money from an ATM during the day even in the city center.

Near touristic areas, scammers often find very imaginative ways to make you hand out some money : some say they need loan and will pay you back later, some will sell you drugs while a fake police officer will come and ask for a “fine”, etc.

If you rent a car, be sure not to leave anything of value inside. Also, when you try to park some “illegal parking assistants” can sometimes ask you for some money in order to “protect” your car while you’re away. If you don’t pay them, there is a risk of getting your car damaged.




Lisbon Safety Index: Safe

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Warnings & Dangers for Portugal

Low Priority-96OVERAL RISK: LOW

Portugal is a very safe country. It is ranked 13th out of 162 on the ranking of the safest and most dangerous countries.



As a top touristic destination, there is a high pickpocket risk in Portugal. A few simple precautions will minimize your chances of being pickpocketed. Take a look at the city maps to see the most frequent pickpockets locations.

Bank Robbery-96


Portugal is an averagely safe country regarding the chances of being mugged or kidnapped. Be aware of dangerous zones by asking local advice.



As in any touristic place, there may be people trying to scam you in Portugal. Be aware of “gold ring” tricks, fake petitions, groups of teenagers acting strangely or trying to distract you; and people offering help with your luggage.



Transports and taxis are generally very safe in Portugal. Watch out for pickpockets.



There are no natural hazards in Portugal.



Portugal is a very safe country in respect to terrorist threats.


Portugal is generally very safe for women travelers.

Useful Information

Visas are not usually required for stays under 90 days, and EU nationals (Schengen) can stay in the country as long as they want.

Make sure your passport has at least six months’ validity from your planned date of return to the country you’re visiting.

www.doyouneedvisa.com is a useful website that can help you know if you need a visa or not based on your nationality and the country you’re visiting.

The currency in Spain and most of Europe is the Euro. Portugal is cheaper than other European countries, but the costs can add up in the main cities. It is comparable to Spain, so  so allow a budget of between 50€ and 70€ per day including accommodation.
Portugal is one of the warmest countries in Europe, with mild summers and very hot summers between 35°C and 40°C (86°F – 95°F) in mainland. It is better to visit during Spring or Summer to take advantage of the beaches, but Lisbon and Porto can be visited any time during the year.
The main international airports are the ones in Lisbon, Porto, Faro and Madeira.
If you’re looking fore cheap flight deals, you can find some on JetRadar
As in any country, we advise travelers to get a travel insurance that covers not only medical problems but also theft and loss of personal items. Learn more on our travel insurance page
Got more questions? Ask them in the Q&A forum!

Here are four of the best Travel Guides for Portugal