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Columbia Safe?

Indianapolis
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Columbia Safe?

A group of my co-workers (mainly police officers) are taking a spanish immersion trip to Bogota, Cartagena and Santa Marta in Dec. I have the abilty to go, but I fear for my safety. Any advice would be great!

Thanks!

Coral Gables...
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1. Re: Columbia Safe?

If you are gonna be staying in these metropolitan areas there is nothing to be worried about. Bogota is a pretty big city and as long as you use common sense, nothing should happen to you, and what I mean about common sense is things like... not wearing expensive jewelry, trying to carry much cash, etc. The last thing that you may want to do is to carry a lot of dollars on you or to be showing off that you are coming from the U.S. that would be a dumb thing to do, just apply common sense that you would use in any other big city. And if you do go out, of course, don't accept drink from strangers and try to go out with locals that you can trust.

Bogota, Colombia
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59 posts
3 reviews
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2. Re: Columbia Safe?

It is just a pity that I cannot give you an unbiased opinion about my own country, just because I love it! I hope somebody from abroad can tell you about their experiences.

My opinion, based in what I have seen by travelling along 4 continents (I still lack Oceania) is that the three cities you are coming in are so dangerous as some sectors in New York or San Francisco at noon, excepting that using drugs in public is not common here . All big city has safety problems and you should use common sense everywhere. In spite of what some junk films insinuate there is no machine guns nests in the corners in the cities, or gangs with weapons shooting at each other everywhere. This is a standard latin american country, and believe me, is plenty of charmful people (we are half caribbean and half andean, as you may infer from our location in Southamerica).

I hope other persons can supply you with lost of facts for your decision. If you decide to come here (and I hope so) you will be always welcome.

I am always available at skype (jorge_payan) for answering questios about my country. I am an engineer and a translator and spend the entire day in front of the PC.

Saludos

London
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5 posts
8 reviews
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3. Re: Columbia Safe?

Definitely Go! I lived in Bogota for a year and visited both Cartagena and Santa Marta as well as many other places and did not encounter any troubles other than what you might expect in any other cities when you look foreign. If you are blonde and blue eyed expect people to look and pass comment as you walk by, dont draw attention to yourself by being loud and flashing your riches about and you will be fine. Cartagena is absolutely lovely, there are some nice places to stay in the old city with far more character than the massive hotel complexes near the beach. Oh and good luck with practising your Spanish on the coast they speak damn fast and sometimes the rest of the country can't understand them!

Ecuador
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1 review
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4. Re: Columbia Safe?

GO!! Don't miss this opportunity to see one of the most beautiful and interesting countries in the Americas! I'm an American woman who has lived in Colombia and who travels there for business frequently. I feel perfectly safe but I observe the safety tips below:

1) Don't take cabs off the street (except in Cartegena)- take ones arranged by your hotel, or call a radio taxi service. Arrange for your hotel to pick you up a the airport (not necessary in Cartegana.)

2) Keep an eye on your drinks at bars, etc. because someone can put a substance in it, similar to the "date rape" drug used in the US, to knock you out and steal your money.

3) Do not take jewelry with you and do not flash money around. Use your ATM and credit card.

4) Finally, use the same street smarts that you would in any big American city.

Buen Viaje!

Bogota
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29 posts
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5. Re: Columbia Safe?

Hi my name is Paul. I use to live in Miami but now im living in Bogota because I do business here. There are many places to go and have a great time, safety depends on following advices and your common sense. When I first got here I stayed for 2 months at this great and fairly cheap hotel in between north and down town. people were greatly kind, service was excelent and they´ll show you how to move wisely around the city.

e-mail me back ill give you some good tips about this great city. paul_boloco@hotmail.com

San Francisco
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122 posts
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6. Re: Columbia Safe?

Paul:

Hi, I am planning to visit just Bogota some time next year, and I am concerned like Prancer1, and lots of bad publicity on the internet about Colombia.

I want to spend just a week in Bogota. By the way, I am originally from Cuba, and I do speak Spanish even though it is getting rusty.

Also I'd like to know how much money will I need to spend just one week in Bogota to have a good time. By the way, I don't drink (for medical reasons) and I do not smoke, and I look more like a white old Spaniard (I will be 54 by the time I visit Colombia).

Let me know. My email is orestesdd@yahoo.com. Y si hablo y escribo español perfectamente, pero si creo que esta un poce desusado.

Regards,

orestesdd

7. Re: Columbia Safe?

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