While Europe prides itself with being one of the most emancipated places in the world, it does have its fair share of problems. Defying the law might be an occasional part of human nature but it does not help unsuspecting travellers in any way. For this particular reason, it is important to know the crime-statistics before heading off to a country – travelling blindly does not usually end well. So, today, we decided to compile a list for you with the most unsafe countries in Europe in terms of crime indexes rising. Traveller experiences and reports have also been taken into consideration, so tread lightly and buckle up for a sad ride!
A note, though – since Europe is generally safe, these contestants should not be taken for outright life-threatening areas. They are merely places where certain circumstances have caused stirs and should be examined. European crime rates and manifestations are not like their South American counterparts, where you would be in a lot more trouble if you walked off the beaten path.
Though the wars have ended in the former Yugoslav region, Montenegro still suffers from a few problems when it comes to crime. Understand, though, that being on this list does not necessarily mean a lot of misconduct as Europe is generally safe. That said, Montenegro is generally considered a safe country to visit. There is a Sunni Muslim population living within the borders and for that particular reason, modest clothing is recommended.
Though Sweden is often considered one of the most idyllic places in the world, it is vital to note that sometimes it does come down with the plague of crime. Stockholm, the capital city, is outright dangerous with recent firearm attacks adding to the bill. Keeping an annual average of above 90 murders, Sweden does not appear to be all that bad. However, crime rates are galloping ahead and there is little or no response from the government – in a few years, things are probably going to look even worse. This one should definitely kept an eye on and if you are planning on going there, keep a close eye out for your safety!
Albania is one of those countries that have managed to amass a nasty reputation over the years. With petty theft rampant throughout the major cities, even violent crime has attracted quite a stir. It is important to keep a low profile and dress to blend in. Note that over 58% of the population adheres to Muslim rites and this means that constant conservative attire is the best way to go about the problem. Wrongdoers, however, might just target anyone, so make sure you respect a 22:00 curfew and all should be well.
Called the heart of the European Union by many, Belgium is no doubt a well-developed country. However, even such perceived prosperity isn’t enough to keep wrongdoers away. Belgium’s crime rates have skyrocketed in the past few years and even terrorism has managed to breach its bounds. When visiting Brussels (the capital), you should definitely know where you’re going because some neighbourhoods like Schaerbeek and Molenbeek are more dangerous than other parts of the city.
Russia’s an interesting contestant on this list because its murder rates have decreased gradually for the past 18 years – with more than 10% per year. That is quite a feat, but then why is it on the list? Well, recent political matters have worsened interpersonal connections and petty crime is still rampant in less police-supervised areas. Moscow has its big-city dangers and is, at places, poorly lit (but, to be frank, most major cities in the world have this problem – this cannot be brought up against it as a valid point), but the main problem that keeps on going is drug trafficking. The border with Ukraine should be avoided at all costs as political tensions often bring up problems there. Stay smart and stay safe!
Well, this one is the elephant in the room by all standards. Since the Crimean annexation crisis, Ukraine has had it the worst in terms of safety. Theft is by far the most common case of wrongdoing there and you should definitely keep your belongings close in poorly lit areas. The major cities, however, are generally safe and are still popular tourist destinations. The Russian border is a general no-go zone and you should always ask the locals about the latest keep-a-thousand-eyes-open areas. Oh, and do not mention Russia in conversations – not a good idea, given the current political circumstances.
Did you find our list informative? What crime-related have you experienced in Europe and how did it manifest itself? Hit the comment section below and help your peers understand the countries you’ve visited better! Oh, and be sure to check back for some exciting new content from time to time! Stay safe!