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Things you should know
In Latvia one can relax without particular worries or risk both in the country-side and in the cities. If basic safety precautions are taken, travelling in Latvia will be safe and worry-free.
Indeed, it must be admitted that the global popular sites of mass tourism, compared to Latvia, are sometimes more dangerous. In Latvia several services take care of travellers’ safety and comfort. For example, the Tourist Police was established in the capital of Latvia, Riga. If travellers have any questions or differences, they can call the information telephone line 1188, but in any extreme situation seek assistance by phoning the toll free emergency number 112.
This is the contact number for the universal rescue and assistance service on which you can reach the ambulance and the police, fire-fighters and gas emergency service.
Of course, just like in any other country one must be careful also in Latvia and take basic safety precautions, avoid initiating conflicts and not to ask for trouble. One must careful in crowded places, for example, in the capital of Latvia, Riga – the tunnels near Riga Bus Station and in the Central Railway stations, pick-pockets may prowl there. Keep your money, credit cards, camera, video-camera in such a way that others cannot get easy access to them.
If you have to withdraw money from an ATM, is better to do so in a bank or in a hotel, not in the street. If there is no other choice, it is better at least to be together with someone. In restaurants, pubs and other places, do not leave your belongings unattended. There is an unwritten rule that is worth abiding to in any country – never leave your glass unattended. If that happens, it’s best to order a new drink.
To avoid fraud or misunderstandings in pubs, start by asking for the menu and study the prices. If unknown girls want to join you in a café, asking to buy them drinks, it is better to stay away from this friendship – they may order very expensive cocktails and share the profits with the pub.
Close circuit video-cameras make the Old Town of Riga a much safer place, allowing the police to record violations and arrive at the place of incident fast. You can enjoy the night-life in Latvia safely, however – moderation is advisable. When paying with a card, do not let it out of your hands and check the sum of the bill.
In general it is, indeed, safe in Latvia. Furthermore, hostile attitudes towards people with a different colour of skin or religion are not typical of this country.