Dedicated to providing you with credible information about living overseas
Best Places In The World To Retire Community Questions and Answers about living and retiring abroad

Questions & Answers

Q & A Menu Q & A BY TOPIC
To navigate, use menu bar to the left
Evan Sweeney  of Gran Pacifica – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Nicaragua is one of the safest countries in Central America.  The crime for the most part is petty.  Being an American or a foreigner in general gets a lot of looks.  Coming from a different background and having less opportunities, the Nicaraguans are curious more than anything.  The best is to be yourself and be friendly.
 
Having said that, be smart to stay out of dangerous areas.  You can go anywhere in the world and find bad places. Don't put yourself in a situation you can't get out of and be conscientious of your surroundings. 
Mike Cobb of ECI Development – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Safety in Nicaragua is a huge concern.   But the reality is very different from the perception.    The UNDP (United Nations Development Program) in 2013 rated Nicaragua as the 2nd safest country in Latin America only after Chile.   Nicaragua came in with the best ranking in one of the categories. 
 
That said, all countries and cities in the world have safe areas and dangerous areas.   Common sense will keep you out of areas that you should not be in.   If you are looking for drugs or prostitutes, you will likely be in a more dangerous area.   Going to the movies, to the beach, to the mountains, to dinner, or driving through the country are all safe activities for the most part.
martin nelson – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Nicaragua enjoys being a safe place to live. I've lived there over twelve years and my car was once broken into when I foolishly left my carryon luggage on the back seat while having lunch in an unfamiliar neighborhood in Estili. The police took fingerprints of the entire car and gave me a detailed report which my insurance company in the US honored.
 
I'm driving about six hours a week or more and I've been stopped less frequently in the last couple of years, and always the transito police have been polite and fair. When beckoned over, I always turn off my engine, lower my window and have my documents ready without being asked. I greet the officer with a smile and a cheerful "buenos dias." I wait patiently with respect and am more often than not treated with respect. If I have broken a silly law I will try and negotiate showing my second wallet without many cords ("cordobas"; Nicaraguan money) in it. If its something more serious I have taken the "multa" and paid the fine which is usually cheap and now handled through the mail ... mostly.
Barry Oliver of Surfing Nahua – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Aminta Granera Socasa,  Director General of the National Police of Nicaragua – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingNicaragua is very safe. There’s a persistent perception that there’s a war going on still in Nicaragua, that it’s very dangerous, and there are a lot of guerillas running around the country. If you really look into it, the national police chief of Nicaragua is a female who has been written up in Time Magazine and The Economist because of what a great job she’s done and how high crime is falling tremendously in Nicaragua and all the bordering countries. The police chief has a significant policy against corruption and fires about 200 policemen a year for this. 
 
The national police chief of Nicaragua started anti-gang programs where ex-gang members are brought into the inner cities in Nicaragua to help get rid of the gang problem. She’s done an amazing job that’s spread throughout the country. Crime is starting to grow as more and more money comes in, including a lot of petty theft. In northern Nicaragua, there are very few incidents of robberies. 
 
I’ve got a wife and two young kids with me here in Nicaragua, and it doesn’t scare me as much as far as safety is concerned. In fact, it doesn’t really cross my mind. Up in northern Nicaragua, crime is almost non-existent at this point. 
 
Residents of northern Nicaragua are trying to nip any potential crime problem in the bud by working with businesses and organizations to make sure that high crime rates don’t hit northern Nicaragua. I rent homes in northern Nicaragua all the time that don’t even have locks on the door, or I would forget to lock my car at night and feel very safe. Nothing has ever happened. That’s something I can’t do in San Diego or Costa Rica.
 
Though I haven’t been in San Diego in a while, I’ve seen that there’s a somewhat organized police system in San Diego, so crime rates in San Diego are fairly low, but you can still become a target there. Crime and murder rates are lower in Nicaragua. The murder rate in Nicaragua is actually lower than the top 100 cities in the US, which is the reason I do feel very safe here in Nicaragua, especially in northern Nicaragua. 
 
Not much crime has occurred in Nicaragua as far as tourism or big investments are concerned, which often would be the reason for the thefts and crimes.  
 
(Aminta Granera Socasa,  Director General of the National Police of Nicaragua, pictured.)
 
 
Immanuel Zerger of Solentiname Tours - Discover Nicaragua – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Nicaragua is the safest country in Central America. We have the advantage because the concept of the police here is to solve problems as opposed to putting people in jail. Sometimes, some young people have some crazy ideas, so the police will go to the neighborhood and they ask the local people what happened and then the police decide on what to do to solve the problem. They usually do social work and mostly the cases are solved. This also makes the public safety a positive endeavor. 
 
Many people come to Nicaragua to walk around the colonial towns because they cannot do that in their own countries. But of course, it is also good to know what is socially acceptable or not in order to be on the safe side. Some neighborhoods in the old areas are not safe.
Arlen Pérez of Hospital Metropolitano Vivian Pellas – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Port of Moyogalpa, Rivas, Nicaragua – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingNicaragua is the safest country in Central America and for the last 5 years, Nicaragua has been in the top 5 safest countries in all of Latin America.
 
But of course, just like anywhere else, if you go out in a dangerous neighborhood at 2 AM and you have your wallet and your cell phone, you could get robbed.  However, even if you are the type of person who does not take lots of precautions, regardless of where you are, I can assure you that there are fewer possibilities to be hijacked or to be the victim of a similar crime here in Nicaragua than in any other country in Latin America.
 
My patients who are expats here in Nicaragua live in cities like Managua (the capital city), Granada, and Rivas. They also live in different cities other than the capital and they tell me that they can walk at night without any problem at all. They feel safe here in Nicaragua.
 
(Port of Moyogalpa, Rivas, Nicaragua, pictured.)
Darrell Bushnell – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
"Is Nicaragua is safe?" is the number one question we receive here. Nicaragua is certainly safer than other Central American countries, but it is a poor country, so petty theft is very high. You cannot go to a restaurant and leave an item on the table and then turn away. It would be gone immediately. We hear of violent crimes from time to time, but it is rarely with weapons. We never see guns. We have been here for eight years and we have never been molested, mugged, robbed, or bothered in any way.
 
All homes in Nicaragua and almost all of Central America, have "portones" or steel bars on the doors and windows. In addition to having these bars for safety reasons, another use of these bars is so that you can leave your wooden doors open, lock the portones, and still have the air flow through the house. We still encourage people to have dogs. I am a dog person. Dogs bark and will alert you if something is going on.
 
Charlotte, North Carolina (where I used to live), is a very nice and safe town, but it also has some areas where I wouldn’t walk at night. That would be the same here in Nicaragua. At night, we take taxis. We do not drive at night, because we do not want to run over somebody, since there are no sidewalks here. We are outside of the city. People here walk on the streets. Some bicycles do not have reflectors, and some cars do not have bright lights. Again, Nicaragua is a poor country so this is expected. We avoid street accidents by trying not to drive at night.
Tanya Hartill of NicaTour Group – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
For me, personally, yes, Nicaragua is safe. Nicaragua is ranked as one of the safest countries in Central America.
 
I've hopped on Nicaraguan buses, I've zigzagged across the country, and I've taken taxis in Nicaragua, alone, and I've never had a problem. There is petty crime all over the world, so I always try to use my common sense when I travel anywhere, be it in Nicaragua or even my in my home country.  So far, I've had more problems in Canada. My parents had their house broken into and my car was broken into in Canada.  I've never had those problems in Nicaragua.
 
I'm a female and often travel by myself. I've never gone out at night, alone, anywhere in the world, but I have been out at nighttime in the streets of Nicaragua, and I've never had a problem.
 
When people ask me if Nicaragua is safe I say, "Yes." You just have to remember that when you’re in a foreign country, you have to be smart and safe.
Jeffrey Soderlind of Horizon Group – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Safety is common concern in Nicaragua.  However, most people do not realize that Nicaragua has repeatedly been deemed one of the safest countries in Latin America over the last several years.
 
This said, whether you're a tourist traveling through Nicaragua or a resident living here, you must always take precautions to avoid vulnerable situations.
Jan Reynolds – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
I live alone in Nicaragua and practice obvious safety practices as any single woman would living anywhere in the world.  I have never felt threatened or unsafe in my 3 years of living here.  The people in the area that I live in (north of Managua) are very helpful and caring.  I understand that certain areas of Managua are dangerous, however, that can be said for most cities in the world and common sense is key. 
Lucy Valenti of Liv Nicaragua – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
Nicaragua cultural flavour – Best Places In The World To Retire – International LivingSafety in Nicaragua is one of our most precious advantages, even though this is not the perception overseas. Maybe this is because people still remember the years in which Nicaragua suffered from the consequences of a war which took place over 35 years ago.
 
I have lived in Nicaragua most of my life and I feel more secure here than when I visit other countries, even some of which are much more industrialized. We are still able to sit outside of our homes in cities like Granada and Leon with ease, just like our grandparents did many years ago. 
 
The crime rate in Nicaragua is one of the lowest in all of the Americas. I think this says much about our standards of security. Of course, like in most countries, people have to take elemental measures to avoid been robbed on the street, but this is something normal everywhere you go.
Victoria Kuhl – Best Places In The World To Retire User Account
I have lived in Nicaragua since 1998 and have driven to many parts of Nicaragua either by myself or with my mother, so it has been two women traveling driving on dirt roads, through small towns, over rivers, etc.  We have never had any trouble or felt in danger.  We find Nicaragua to be safe to foreigners and the locals to be overall helpful and friendly. 

If you're interested in Safety in other places, look here...

Go Here Next

 
Best Places In The World To Retire Expat Stories contains text, video, and photos by people just like you who are already living abroadUse the menu on this page to go to categories of Stories.
Best Places In The World To Retire Community Questions and Answers about living and retiring abroadUse the menu on this page to go to other categories of questions.
The Best Places In The World To Retire Location Advisor makes personalized recommendations for where to live and retire overseasGet matched to your ideal location to live abroad.
Best Places In The World To Retire Community Questions and Answers about living and retiring abroadAnswers about living, working or visiting abroad.
Best Places In The World To Retire Expat Stories contains text, video, and photos by people just like you who are already living abroadStories by expats & others about their life aborad.
Best Places In The World To Retire - MarketplaceFind for profit, non-profit and religious organizations.
 

Our Pledge To You

Best Places will present information from the Community in a transparent way, unedited, except to conform with our Conditions of Use.

You can trust that Best Places does not manipulate content to sell you anything. All opinions in the Community Q & A and Expat Stories are those of its authors, not Best Places.

Get Known To The Community

Those who contribute to the Best Places Community are our heroes! And being a Best Places hero is fast, fun, and easy. Just go to Questions & Answers, find your first question to answer, click on it, and then click the Contribute Your Answer To This Question Button. If you’d rather enter a Story, go to Expat Stories and click the Contribute Your Story Button".

Contact/Support

Please contact us. We would love to hear from you! Customer Service
Technical Support
Business Development
Suggestions
Press
Phone: (US) 520-940-0481