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Is downtown Winnipeg actually unsafe at night?

New York City, New...
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Is downtown Winnipeg actually unsafe at night?

Hey guys. I'm going to Winnipeg for the first time next month. I'm going to see a concert at the MTS Centre in the center of downtown. I realize Winnipeg isn't really a tourist destination. So I don't know what to expect during my trip.

I'm in the process of booking a hotel for my 3-night stay in Winnipeg. I'm looking into various hotels located in the downtown area. Right now, it's a tossup between the Radisson, the Delta, and Place Louis Riel.

However, when I started reading Tripadvisor reviews on these hotels, I've noticed many Tripadvisor members commenting on how downtown Winnipeg is "seedy" and "sketchy" at night. They were even told by hotel staff not venture out alone during late-night hours. In fact, I've heard all around the internet how conditions in Winnipeg aren't that great.

Is downtown Winnipeg really seedy and sketchy at night? Is the downtown area really as "bad" as people say it is?

If that is truly the case, I'll probably stay at the Radisson, which is only a block and half from the MTS Centre. However, the Place Louis Riel and the Delta are much more affordable for me.

Truthfully, I've been to Edmonton, and I have friends who live in Calgary. And both seem to be decent cities. So I don't see how Winnipeg could be any different from any other Canadian Prairie city.

SE Ontario
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1. Re: Is downtown Winnipeg actually unsafe at night?

All 3 of these hotels are relatively close to the MTS, with the Radisson and Delta being the closest. I would say comparison wise, Winnipeg is more like Edmonton than Calgary. If you are from New York City, what you will notice is that Winnipeg, like many Prairie cities, is somewhat deserted at night, which makes it seem rather sketchy. I wouldn't say, in my experience, it is dangerous. But like all cities it has good and bad areas, and it is best to use the same common sense you would use in any place - keep your eyes and ears alert.

It is true that Winnipeg is not a big tourist destination, but they do have a lovely art gallery in the downtown area, and the Exchange District has some stunning historical architecture which is always worth a look.

Canada
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2. Re: Is downtown Winnipeg actually unsafe at night?

In my opinion the problem is way overstated. A lot of the reviewers are suburbanites or people coming in from surrounding small towns who fail to see the difference between a panhandler asking for change (which is not an unusual sight) and a mugger (which is highly unusual) .

While I would not suggest going out for walks by yourself at 4 am, I do not think downtown Winnipeg is a dangerous place to avoid at night. All of the downtown hotels mentioned in the original post are fine choices (and for what it's worth, the Delta is connected by skywalk to the MTS Centre so there is technically no need to set foot outside anyway).

I'd be interested in hearing the OP's thoughts after their trip. Is downtown Winnipeg really the post-apocalyptic hell on earth that some hyper-skittish Tripadvisor commenters think it is? :-)

Edited: 30 September 2011, 14:45
Winnipeg, Canada
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3. Re: Is downtown Winnipeg actually unsafe at night?

I also concur with patrolman and phpr's comments about the safety issues. like they said, it is just using basic common sense. i also would also say, that in my opinion, living here, that area is by far *not* the most dangerous area of the city, that would be an area north of there not even near where you will be staying.

I think you will find the downtown area where you are staying very much like Edmonton. With the MTS centre there, there are a lot of of great new restaurants and bars/clubs open, as well fantastic galleries and the exchange district.

hope that helps,

Jo

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4. Re: Is downtown Winnipeg actually unsafe at night?

Thanks for the reassurances, guys. I'm leaning toward the Place Louis Riel, because it's $200 cheaper than the Radisson. I could just walk to and from the MTS Centre.

It shouldn't be a problem. There will be lots of people streaming out of the MTS Centre after the concert.

That's what usually happens at Madison Square Garden.

Calgary, Canada
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5. Re: Is downtown Winnipeg actually unsafe at night?

Hi again Jehrico1979. I would strongly recommend the Radisson Hotel,. It's closer to the MTS Centre and its a very nice hotel, I stayed there for my cousin's wedding last year. And you have nothing to worry about any more than any other Canadian city. I'm orignially from Winnipeg and can tell you, it's fine. Honestly, I think you may be a little overlyworried about Candain cities at night, they are cities of course so you have to use a bit of common sense and "street smarts", but I think they will all seem pretty mellow to you compared to NYC!

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g154913-i285-k4765…

Edited: 30 September 2011, 19:55
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6. Re: Is downtown Winnipeg actually unsafe at night?

Hello again Canadian071,

Nice to see you again. Thanks for the input.

I'd love to stay at the Radisson close to the MTS Centre. However, the Place Louis Riel is $200 cheaper.

Would it still be okay to stay at the Place Louis Riel? The walk to the MTS Centre shouldn't be too bad.

SE Ontario
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7. Re: Is downtown Winnipeg actually unsafe at night?

It's been a few years since I stayed at the Place Louis Riel, but it was perfectly fine. Not luxurious, but clean and adequate. It's only a 5 - 10 minute walk to the MTS. With a $200 differential, I'd stay at the Louis Riel.

Winnipeg Canada
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8. Re: Is downtown Winnipeg actually unsafe at night?

Place Louis Riel is in a great area also. Winnipeg is over look tourist destination. I worked downtown for years and had no problems.

There is also always something happening downtown whether it is concerts at MTS center or a NHL game or a play at Praire Theatre exchange

From downtown you can walk to Exchange District for more great Canadian designer shopping . Also you are very close to The Fork another great shopping destination.

I have been to New York city numerous times, so I can say that Winnipeg is as safe as New York City.

"They were even told by hotel staff not venture out alone during late-night hours. In fact, I've heard all around the internet how conditions in Winnipeg aren't that great."

I was told the same thing about New York.

Give me some ideas about what you to like to eat and I wil give you some tips

Calgary, Canada
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9. Re: Is downtown Winnipeg actually unsafe at night?

I can't comment on Place Louis Riel Jehrico, as I have never personally stayed there, but if it is that much cheaper than the Radisson and the others on here say its okay, then I'm sure its just fine. I do agree that it still is not a very long walk from PLR to the MTS Centre, and plus if you are at PLR, you are actually closer to the Forks, which you should go check out. Lots of cool little shops there, and good places to eat.

By the way, you will love the MTS Centre, it's a great place for concerts, the sound in there is amazing. Much better than the Saddledome out here I'm afraid, so hopefully you aren't too disappointed by that when you get out here.

I know this is a bit off-topic, but where did you decide on staying while you are here in Calgary if you don't mind me asking? If I remember correctly you were torn between the Hotel Arts and Delta Bow Valley.....

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10. Re: Is downtown Winnipeg actually unsafe at night?

…canoe.ca/CNEWS/…18765491.html

WINNIPEG — This city's core area is so dangerous and riddled with crime that Canada's largest airliner is no longer allowing its pilots and flight crew to stay in downtown hotels during layovers.

In a rare move, Air Canada has issued a bulletin to its flight crews saying staff will no longer be staying at the Radisson Hotel downtown due to increasing concerns over violent crime in the area.

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