Buenos Aires Warnings and Dangers
The capital of Argentina and the nation’s largest city, Buenos Aires is the heart of Latin America. While it’s one of the safer cities in this part of the world, you will want to take into account issues such political demonstrations and problems with the upkeep of streets.
Stick to Licensed Taxis Only
When hailing a taxi, look for a red and white sticker that says IRA on it. This indicates the taxi is licensed. Licensed taxis have meters and must follow certain city regulations. The taxis, known as radio taxis, should be yellow and black on the outside. Radio taxis can be further recognized as they have a sign on all four doors of the taxi rather than just the front two. As a passenger, you should keep the windows closed, especially when traveling through the poorest neighborhoods like La Boca or you may get besieged by people begging. Keep a map on hand so you can make sure the taxi driver is not deliberately heading along side streets to increase the fare.
Argentina is one of the more stable cities in South America, but it does have underlying problems. Social unrest has been known to spill into the capital. It is not uncommon to encounter demonstrations of hundreds or even thousands of people, particularly in places like the Plaza de Mayo. Keep away if you can, as the police and public officials are not always known for their restraint.
The Bird Poop Scam
Many locals are honest and kind. A few, however, may try to scam you. One of the more popular scams is to come over and tell you that you have bird poop on your shirt. They will try to clean your shirt with water and tissues. In the process, they will typically ask you to take off some of your clothing and hand it to them. The intent is to find your wallet and run off with it. Ignore anyone who tells you this.
Watch Where You Walk
The sidewalks and major streets in Buenos Aires are not always well maintained. Large cracks and gaping holes are common. Look where you’re walking in the city and try to avoid really high heels or you might risk injury.
Keep some extra cash on hand at all times, as some restaurants and many taxis don’t take credit cards. Keep cash on hand when leaving the country as well. You are charged a departure tax that is not included in the price of your ticket. You must go to a booth where you pay the tax and get a stamp before boarding.
Editor’s note: The information contained on this page was compiled using real traveler reviews about warnings or dangers in Buenos Aires.