Safety in Vancouver BC

May 28th, 2014, 06:11 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: May 2014
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Safety in Vancouver BC

Are there any areas we should avoid while visiting Vancouver later this year? We are senior citizens - both in our 70's. Thank you for any helpful information you can give us.
Grandmom is offline  
May 28th, 2014, 06:29 PM
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Please put this in the Canada forum.
I think the west side of Vancouver is safer than anything east of the train station.
tomfuller is offline  
May 28th, 2014, 06:57 PM
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Been some years, but there was an area between I believe Gastown and Chinatown that was really sketchy, even during the day. Looked like lots of druggies and drunks, with some dubious things happening in the alleyways. Other than that, we found Vancouver to be a beautiful, safe, very walkable city.
curiousgeo is offline  
May 28th, 2014, 06:58 PM
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I'm in my 70's too and I have never been anywhere in Vancouver that MOST visitors would even think of venturing to that seemed in any way "unsafe."
Dukey1 is offline  
May 29th, 2014, 07:21 AM
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I was in Vancouver a couple of years ago.

I was in Chinatown & Gastown and never felt unsafe anywhere.

I don't remember when we were in Chinatown but were in Gastown in the evening.
A lot of tourists.
Myer is offline  
May 29th, 2014, 07:37 AM
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We have never had any problems. We stick to areas that have the hotels in which we stay, the restaurants in which we eat, and the attractions and stores that appeal to us.

happytrailstoyou is offline  
May 29th, 2014, 08:21 AM
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We were there last year and I would say Vancouver is safe. The area that is generally avoided by tourists is called Downtown Eastide (DTES), because of the abundance of drug users, homeless people and prostitutes in the area. Chinatown and Gastown officially fall in the DTES area, but are safe to visit during the day and as one poster said above, Gastown is bustling with tourists at night as well. Just don't venture further EAST than Gastown and NORTH from Chinatown, and aviod Main and East Hastings if you don't want to check out the main artery of the DTES.
jamierin is offline  
May 29th, 2014, 01:04 PM
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Ditto the others - I was in Vancouver four years ago (so not the most current info, but fairly recent), and the only time I felt uneasy was taking a "shortcut" back from Gastown to my hotel that went nearish to Chinatown, I think. The main streets of Gastown were totally fine. I'm a single woman, 29 at the time, and was by myself most of the time (I was there for a conference).

The main part of downtown, Stanley Park, etc were all totally fine.
jent103 is offline  
May 29th, 2014, 03:21 PM
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jamierin, that was the area I was referring to. Funny, we took what looked like a shortcut on the map and ended up there. We walked quickly and were fine, just not exactly what you want to see on vacation.
curiousgeo is offline  
May 29th, 2014, 03:41 PM
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Vancouver has over many decades been far more safe than any comparable U.S. city to its size. A major reason for that is that normal people are roaming the street at all hours of the night in numbers not generally equaled by U.S. cities of similar size.

Just look over your shoulder to make sure that a BIG hockey game hasn't gone the wrong way (or the right way either) and you should be fine in just about any area in which you could talk yourself into having reason to walk.

*** and in the event of a hockey riot... just give your companion a passionate kiss... and the police will leave you alone, and you may become relatively famous in the process.
NorthwestMale is offline  
May 30th, 2014, 07:53 AM
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I've been to Vancouver 3 times and northwestmale's sentiment sums it up to me "you should be fine in just about any area in which you could talk yourself into having reason to walk." Going from Gastown to Chinatown, I ended up at the corner of Hastings and Main... a very depressing place with drug addicts clearly not coping with life and I'd avoid that corner and all within a one block radius corner of that but chances are, like me, you'll make it out unscathed.

Vancouver's a beautiful city. Enjoy! Daniel
Daniel_Williams is offline  
May 30th, 2014, 05:31 PM
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I once wandered into the downtown east side by mistake and although I did not feel exactly threatened, it was a depressing experience, and as another poster has suggested, not what you want to experience on a vacation. Be prepared for panhandlers as well. Just avoid eye contact, or give them a courteous refusal and that should be the end of it. I must say though, some of them give inventive and convincing stories about why they need a handout.

Vancouver is a beautiful, walkable, friendly city. I can't imagine you not enjoying it.
eliztravels2 is offline  
May 30th, 2014, 06:25 PM
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Just avoid eye contact...

I think that's true if one is going to register horror or disgust, but not if you want to communicate, "I acknowledge you as a fellow human being."

happytrailstoyou is offline  
May 31st, 2014, 04:27 AM
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Happytrails , I don't agree that avoiding eye contact indicates horror or disgust. It's just a way of saying 'I don't want to engage with you" . The OP was asking about safety in various areas of the city and I felt this was useful information, that's all. I don't encounter much panhandling the the small city where I live and was unprepared for the assertiveness of the panhandlers in Vancouver last time I was there, and had to figure out how to navigate the streets in a way that felt comfortable for me.
eliztravels2 is offline  
Jun 8th, 2014, 06:18 AM
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Gee. I pass people all the time in cities who don't make eye contact with me. I never knew that they were showing horror and disgust towards me! Note taken.
NeoPatrick is offline  
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