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Honolulu, the vibrant capital of Hawaii, conjures up images of white sand beaches, blue ocean waters, and swaying palm trees. But is this paradise as safe as it seems? If you’re wondering “Is Honolulu dangerous?”, you’re not alone.

In short, Honolulu has typical big city crime issues like theft and assault but overall violent crime rates are well below the national average. Tourist hot spots like Waikiki Beach are heavily policed and generally very safe. However, like any city, being smart and using common sense goes a long way in staying safe.

Honolulu’s Crime Rates Compared to Other Cities

When it comes to crime rates, Honolulu holds its own against other cities in the United States. Let’s take a closer look at how the crime rates in Honolulu compare to those in other cities.

Violent Crime Rate Below National Average

Contrary to popular belief, Honolulu has a relatively low violent crime rate compared to the national average.

According to the latest statistics, the city’s violent crime rate is below the national average for cities of similar size.

This means that residents and visitors can feel relatively safe when it comes to violent crimes such as homicide, assault, and robbery.

However, it’s always important to remain cautious and aware of your surroundings, as crime can happen anywhere.

Property Crime on Par with Other Cities

When it comes to property crime, Honolulu’s rates are comparable to those of other cities. Property crimes include offenses such as burglary, theft, and motor vehicle theft.

While the crime rate may not be significantly lower than in other metropolitan areas, it is important to note that Honolulu is a popular tourist destination, which can attract opportunistic criminals.

Taking basic precautions, such as locking your car and securing your belongings, can go a long way in preventing property crimes.

It’s worth mentioning that crime rates can fluctuate over time, so it’s important to stay updated on the latest statistics.

The Honolulu Police Department provides regular updates on crime trends and prevention tips on their official website. You can find more information at

Hot Spots for Crime in Honolulu

While Honolulu overall is considered a relatively safe city, like any urban area, there are certain neighborhoods that have higher crime rates than others.

It’s important to be aware of these hot spots to ensure your personal safety while visiting or living in Honolulu.

Waikiki Beach Area

Waikiki Beach, with its beautiful sandy shores and vibrant nightlife, is a popular tourist destination. However, it’s also known for having a higher crime rate compared to other areas in Honolulu.

The most common crimes reported in this area are theft, including purse snatching and pickpocketing.

As a visitor, it’s important to be cautious and keep an eye on your belongings, especially in crowded places such as the beach or shopping centers.

Downtown Honolulu

Downtown Honolulu is the bustling center of the city, home to government buildings, businesses, and a vibrant arts and cultural scene.

While it is generally safe during the day, it’s advised to be cautious when walking alone at night, as there have been reports of robberies and assaults in this area.

It’s always a good idea to be aware of your surroundings and take well-lit, busy streets when walking at night.

Chinatown District

Chinatown, located just west of downtown Honolulu, offers a unique blend of history, culture, and cuisine. However, it’s important to exercise caution when visiting this area, especially at night.

Drug-related crimes and property crimes, such as car break-ins, have been reported in Chinatown.

If you plan to explore this vibrant neighborhood, it’s recommended to stay in well-lit, busy areas and avoid walking alone at night.

It’s important to note that while these areas may have higher crime rates compared to other parts of Honolulu, the overall crime rate in the city remains relatively low.

It’s always a good idea to stay informed, take necessary precautions, and use common sense to ensure your safety while exploring the beautiful capital of Hawaii.

Also read: Is Chinatown Honolulu Safe? Everything You Need To Know

Staying Safe as a Tourist in Honolulu

Use Common Sense as You Would at Home

When visiting Honolulu, it’s important to remember that personal safety should be a top priority. While Honolulu is generally a safe destination for tourists, it’s always wise to use common sense and take precautions, just as you would in any unfamiliar city.

Be aware of your surroundings and trust your instincts. If something feels off or unsafe, it’s best to avoid the situation and find a safer alternative.

One way to ensure your safety is by staying informed about the current safety conditions in Honolulu. Check the local news or reliable websites for any updates on crime trends or areas to avoid.

This will help you make informed decisions about where to go and what activities to participate in during your stay.

Stay in Well-Lit, Populated Areas at Night

While Honolulu is generally considered safe, it’s always a good idea to take extra precautions, especially at night.

Stick to well-lit, populated areas when exploring the city after dark. Avoid walking alone in dimly lit or deserted areas, as these can be more prone to criminal activity.

If you’re unsure about the safety of a particular area, don’t hesitate to ask the locals or hotel staff for advice. They can provide valuable insights and recommendations on the best places to visit, ensuring your safety and enjoyment during your time in Honolulu.

Don’t Leave Valuables Unattended on the Beach

Honolulu’s beautiful beaches are a major draw for tourists, but it’s important to keep an eye on your belongings while enjoying the sand and surf.

Beach thefts can occur, so be cautious and never leave your valuables unattended. Consider using a beach locker or keeping your belongings within sight at all times.

Additionally, it’s a good idea to leave any unnecessary valuables, such as expensive jewelry or large sums of cash, at your hotel.

By minimizing the amount of valuable items you bring to the beach, you can reduce the risk of theft and ensure a worry-free beach experience.

While it’s essential to be mindful of safety precautions, it’s important not to let fear overshadow the enjoyment of your trip. Honolulu offers a wealth of incredible experiences, from stunning beaches to cultural landmarks.

By taking simple steps to stay safe and being aware of your surroundings, you can fully embrace all that this vibrant city has to offer.

Also read: What To Do In Oahu, Hawaii: The Ultimate Guide

Tips for Avoiding Scams and Theft

Be Wary of Stranger Danger

When visiting Honolulu, it’s important to be cautious of strangers and potential scams.

While Honolulu is generally a safe city, like any other popular tourist destination, it is not immune to petty crimes such as pickpocketing and scams targeting unsuspecting tourists.

To avoid falling victim to these scams, always be aware of your surroundings and keep an eye on your belongings.

Don’t engage in conversations with strangers who seem overly friendly or suspicious, and never give out personal information to anyone you don’t trust.

Only Take Official Taxis

When it comes to transportation, it is recommended to only take official taxis in Honolulu. These taxis are licensed and regulated, ensuring your safety and protecting you from potential scams.

Avoid accepting rides from unlicensed individuals who may approach you offering cheaper fares, as they may not have the necessary permits and insurance. Official taxis can be easily recognized by their marked vehicles and identification cards displayed on the dashboard.

Additionally, it’s a good practice to confirm the estimated fare with the driver before getting into the taxi to avoid any surprises at the end of the ride.

Keep Your Hotel Room Secure

Your hotel room should be a safe haven during your stay in Honolulu.

To ensure the security of your belongings, always lock your room when you leave and use the hotel’s safe for valuable items such as passports, jewelry, and large amounts of cash.

Keep your room key secure and avoid leaving it unattended in public areas.

If you notice any suspicious activity or individuals around your hotel, don’t hesitate to notify the hotel staff or security. Taking these precautions will help minimize the risk of theft and ensure a worry-free stay.

Also read: The Safest Place To Live In Hawaii


While no city is crime-free, Honolulu remains one of the safest tourist destinations in the United States. By using basic street smarts and situational awareness, visitors are highly unlikely to encounter any issues.

The aloha spirit is alive and well in Honolulu. Don’t let fear of crime stop you from fully experiencing the beauty and culture of this island paradise.

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