Is Cambodia Safe?

Cambodia is one of these attractive places you would love to visit or reside. It is a fantastic country in Southeast Asia, centered between China and Thailand. Recently, the nation has been on the backpacking track due to the fantastic sites like Ko Rong, Angkor Wat, and the Mekong, known for the pink dolphins, among many other sites.

It is a place you would love to visit again or live once you set foot there. The locals are known to be welcoming, and you cannot keep off of these attraction sites. But the main question remains, is Cambodia safe? Is it safe for travel? Is it safe to live? And more importantly, is Cambodia safe for women?

For these and more details concerning the safety of Cambodia, keep reading. 

Is Cambodia Safe?

Generally, Cambodia is safe to visit and live in. It is politically stable, but now and then, with short or no notice, there could be protests that sometimes turn violent. However, like any other country, Cambodia has its share of crime and security issues. Therefore, you need to be aware of the issues and measures before landing there for your vacation.

Petty Crimes 

These are the main security concerns in Cambodia. Though tourists flock to the nation and leave millions of dollars as revenue every year, many people live below the poverty line. Locals indulge in petty crimes to sustain their families and themselves and mainly target these tourist destinations.

Sometimes, the crimes might turn violent, especially during holiday or fisting seasons when the demand for money increases. Crimes like robbery, pickpocketing, snatching and luring to theft nest become rampant. For a couple of years, crimes have been reported and are on a rising trend.

However, these crimes do not take place in the whole land of Cambodia. There are known places where these acts are primarily dominant because of poor lighting and take place in the wee hours. Sihanoukville, the riverfront, BKK areas of Phnom Penh, beaches, and nearby islands Sihanoukville are the most common places to experience these petty crimes.

With these security concerns, many wonders and ask, is Cambodia safe for females? Yes, Cambodia is safe for females. However, there have been reported rape cases in various parts and during the night or dark hours. These crimes occur mainly on riverfronts, beaches, and poorly lit places. Therefore, as a woman, it is safe to even walk alone during the day but extremely dangerous to be out alone in these poorly lit places during the wee hours. 

Nightclubs and bars are other centers of crime in Cambodia. Though they are primarily safe, this does not rule out the possibility of losing your possessions. People are drugged and lose their belongings in the process. Also, finding a beautiful lady or gent and deciding to take them into your place for a fun night might turn out tragic. It is not surprising you wake up next to no one and discover the disappearance of your possessions, including your travel documents. 

Such scenarios mainly occur in tourists’ densely populated places like Siem Reap and Phnom Penh. Therefore, it is best you know your drinking limits and would be better to tag a friend or two along. Sometimes, you might be robbed when walking or riding home. 

Another alarming issue in Cambodia is the fake monks in the famous Angkor temple. Many tourist flocks to this old temple for various reasons, allowing locals to distort them in the name of monks. Also, women and children line up as beggars, where some are genuine, and others are pretenders hungry for your dollars. 

To avoid these petty crimes in Cambodia, you are urged to take the necessary precaution measures like:

  • Leave your belongings in your safe accommodation room.
  • Avoid too friendly Cambodian strangers.
  • Avoid walking alone at night or during dark hours, especially in poorly lit places.
  • Avoid drinking excessively and late at night.
  • Handle your belongings properly when in public.

Road travel

In the Southeast Asia region, Cambodia is famous for road traffic accidents. High mortalities and severe injuries are recorded mainly because of low driver safety and poor vehicle standards. The high demand for drivers and the corrupt state of the institutes in Cambodia play a significant role.

Ironically, you are not permitted to drive any machine in Cambodia if you do not have a Cambodian license, whether you have an International Driving Permit or not. This gives the local drivers an upper advantage which sometimes turns out to be a bad option.

Hiring a vehicle or any traveling machine can be hectic too. Owners of these rental vehicles of motorbikes are known for their notorious ways of demanding money for unprecedented reasons. If you use your passport or any valuable item to rent a traveling machine, owners might hold on to it against claimed machine damage, which poses a significant threat. 

Police are also known to be a bit corrupt due to the low salary. Therefore, reporting any matter will be challenging. You should be wary of Cambodia’s many other security threats before settling on traveling and living in the country.

Drug crime 

Having drugs in Cambodia is illegal. However, drug-related deaths, psychotic cessations, and freak-outs are common in Cambodia. Therefore, you never know what you might be getting when purchasing drugs or permitted pharmaceuticals, thus the need to be more cautious.

Moreover, police drug operations frequently take shape in Cambodia, and you surely don’t want to end up behind bars, pay a heavy fine or face deportation. So, take more precautions when dealing with legal or illegal drugs in the region.


Cambodia is a safe place to live or travel, but it has its share of insecurity records like any other country. Women can travel to this beautiful nation with or without company and explore the different attractions the Cambodian nature offer. 

However, there are many petty crime issues beneath the beauty of Cambodia. As a visitor, you might find it hard to cope if you ignore the simple rules of self-security measures. Most of these crimes like walking alone in poorly lit places, walking in the night, and being in insecure places like riverfronts, beaches, and areas rich in unexploded ordnances can be avoided. 

Taking good care of yourself and your belongings can make your visit to Cambodia memorable, while slight ignorance can turn the visit into a nightmare. So, security in Cambodia depends on your response, but it is a safe place to travel and live.