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Crime And Public Safety in the Philippines

The Philippines has been feared by Foreigners and Tourists for at least the past 10 years, mostly because of the Kidnappings and the heinous actions of Terrorists/Rebel Groups such as the New People’s Army (NPA) and Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF). However, a majority of crimes that occur in the Philippines are mostly petty crimes such as Pickpockets, Snatching (of bags and baggage), hold-ups, and the occasional Frauds and swindling.

Most of the streets of the Philippines are safe, as long as you exercise caution like anywhere else in the world. There are some certain places you should definitely try to avoid, such as bad neighborhoods in most Urban Areas, and Provinces/Regions where Terrorist Groups abound. Most of the crimes that do occur however, does not involve killings. People in the Philippines would generally not hurt Tourists, and are even polite in dealing with Foreigners, which lead to the infamous “Filipino Hospitality”. Even common criminals and street crooks don't commonly target Foreigners and tourists since they fear that they will press heavier charges against them.

The Police Force of the Philippines is certainly not the cream of the crop in Asia. Many Filipinos even call them “Buwaya” (Crocodile) since they seem to prey on the hapless civilians thru corruption and extortion. Still, some Policemen are true to their duties and serve the public diligently. A Tip to Tourist and Foreigners: If you ever get in trouble with the Police, or a Police Personnel tries to extort you, try and contact your Embassy immediately.

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