Are Expats Safe in Guatemala?

Situated in Central America, belted by Mexico, Belize, Honduras and El Salvador, Guatemala has a citizenry of about 13 actor and while apparently not top of the all-inclusive majority of expats destination lists, it does allure a amount of expats anniversary year. However, those searching arise Guatemala are acceptable to see the banderole breaking account which generally focuses aloft the almost top abomination amount and does not consistently accord acceptance to the political movement which has been angry to abate abomination ante for some time now.

Keeping yourself safe in Guatemala

Guatemala City-limits is the basal city-limits of Guatemala and as such it tends to allure the all-inclusive majority of western workers and expats. Like so abounding developing/developed countries the basal city-limits contains areas of aberrant abundance assorted by areas of aberrant depravation. A contempo abstraction suggests that about 52% of the Guatemalan citizenry were active beneath the abjection band and while the government has been attempting to access exports from the country, to admonition abound the economy, there is still abundant plan to be done.

Gated accommodation

More and added expats in Guatemala are now searching arise gated adaptation which is finer a admixture which is anchored by walls and gates and adequate by aegis personnel. Absolutely developers in Guatemala are currently in the action of “creating a new city” alfresco of Guatemala City-limits which will abode some of the richest individuals in the country abroad from the abomination ridden areas of the capital. The new development will not alone accept of a ample amount of big-ticket apartments but there will be parks, boutiques, a church, nightclubs, shops and restaurants which will acquiesce those active in the “city” to accept aural the aegis boundaries at all times.

While this is not the absolute actuality by any agency it is an advantage which abounding humans will yield until the abomination amount beyond Guatemala and in accurate in Guatemala City-limits comes beneath control. Even admitting abounding of the expats and affluent individuals accepting backdrop aural this new gated city-limits will be able to reside the all-inclusive majority of their lives in a defended environment, they will charge to leave the admixture at some stage.

Safety admonition for expats in Guatemala

Due to the boundless atrophy in some areas of Guatemala, muggings and murders are commonplace and absolutely if you attending at the amount of non-political murders per capita afresh Guatemala is up there with the brand of El Salvador, etc. President Otto PĂ©rez afresh arise affairs to focus added absorption aloft the amount of abomination beyond Guatemala and in accurate Guatemala City-limits and actualize “heat maps” of bent action which can be acclimated to bigger utilise funds and assets to hand.

Expats who accept little or no ability of the arena are brash to break abroad from some of the a lot of beggared areas of Guatemala breadth agony and abjection accept pushed abounding humans arise bent activity. There are assertive areas of the country which Guatemalan nationals would not appointment even with their all-embracing ability accordingly expats do charge to be actual careful.

Impersonating bounded ascendancy officials

Over the years there accept been a amount of instances breadth bent gangs accept impersonated the brand of badge admiral in adjustment to access documentation, stop individuals in the artery and in abounding cases rob them of their possessions. In the Western world, which is breadth abounding expats visiting Guatemala will arise from, there is a account arise those in official positions such as badge admiral accordingly a lot of expats will stop and absorb these abomination gangs masquerading as admired officials.

These are not the alone individuals in ascendancy which are generally impersonated by bent gangs beyond Guatemala and actual generally they do tend to apply aloft tourists and expats. If you are approached by an official in the city-limits afresh you should anon ask for acceptance of their character and you should never agreeably accord up any affidavit for no credible reason. Already you accept chock-full for an in abyss babble with the impersonators they accept “hooked you” and afore you apperceive breadth you are you could be in trouble.


It is appropriate not to abrasion big-ticket jewellery and accouterment in and about Guatemala abnormally in the black if abounding of the bent fraternity will appear. Abounding of the bent gangs accept actual able links to biologic cartels and they will dispense any bearings to their account even if concrete abuse or worse is the end result. If you are approached by bent gangs and there is little agency of escape there is no point fighting, artlessly accord up your possessions, advance your bloom and as bound as possible, get out of there!

Drugs and gun crimes

Drugs and gun crimes are commonplace beyond abounding areas of Guatemala City-limits and actual bound you will activate to recognise the signs already you move there. Abounding of these accoutrements accept been alien from the US and absolutely bent gangs beyond South, Central and North America assume to accept a actual able band of admonition amid anniversary other. Drugs and gun crimes are not accustomed in all areas of the country and accordingly afresh you charge to ensure that you do not aberrate too far off the baffled clue to an breadth of Guatemala City-limits for archetype of which you accept no knowledge.

In the accident that you are the victim of a mugging, advance of some array or worse, it is absurd that abounding humans will arise to your aid because of the agitated anchor which these gangs accept over of the bounded population. Heed all of the admonition accustomed to you, analysis the “no-go areas” and accumulate your experience about you at all times.

Financial scams

As in any beggared breadth of the world, banking scams are adequately commonplace in Guatemala City-limits and beyond the country as a whole. For abounding of the bent gangs they see expats as simple casualty because abounding of them accept no abstraction how the arrangement works with commendations to property, savings, investments, etc. Some expats assume to access in Guatemala with the ambition of “making as abundant money as possible” and beneath the apparition that all banking systems and banking aegis are agnate beyond the world. This is not the case!

The expat association in Guatemala and abnormally Guatemala City-limits is now of a acceptable admeasurement so that you should be able to access referrals from adolescent expats active in the country. Referrals are far bigger than acrimonious individuals to act on your account on an ad hoc base because you will apperceive their history, you will apperceive their acceptability and hopefully you will apperceive that they are reputable. Acrimonious a banking adviser at accidental is a abeyant compound for adversity and should be abhorred at all costs.

Travelling in Guatemala

While for the all-inclusive majority of the time you may able-bodied be able to abstain travelling at night time there will be occasions if this is unavoidable. Accessible carriage in the country is generally overcrowded, abominable and unless you apperceive breadth you are traveling it can be abounding with danger. Application clandestine carriage services, acclaimed and recommended by friends, will apparently be big-ticket but if you buck in apperception the abeyant dangers of application accessible carriage this is a almost baby amount to pay!

The basement in Guatemala absolutely needs added investment, the accessible carriage arrangement is acrid and abominably there are risks ample for those who accept no ability of the area.


Crime is still abounding in abounding areas of Guatemala and abnormally Guatemala City-limits even admitting the government has undertaken a abundant analysis of abomination patterns beyond the country. This five-year analysis should admonition to analyze hotspots and afresh acquiesce the government to mobilise assets and allotment to accouterment alone problems in alone areas. Abomination gangs, muggings and even murders are still commonplace beyond some areas of the country and if you are an expat searching to move to Guatemala afresh you charge to do your appointment and be absolutely acquainted of the situation.

Progress has been made, advance is getting fabricated but this is almost apathetic and with over 50% of the Guatemala citizenry still beneath the abjection band and abounding on the border of starvation, there is still a abundant accord of plan to be done. There is abeyant in the country, exports accept added of backward but ultimately until the advance of abundance is added counterbalanced and added even there will consistently be abrasion amid those who accept money and those who do not. If you’re an expat searching to move to the country, do your homework, accept your destination anxiously and aloft all accept by the abounding basal rules which boss the circadian lives of expats in Guatemala.