Brussels Travel Guide

Health & Safety

Brussels is generally a safe city. Some suburban neighbourhoods have a poor reputation, but most travellers are unlikely to visit them. The neighbourhoods of Schaarbeek, Brussels North, St-Josse, Marollen, Anneessens, Molenbeek and Anderlecht should be avoided at night if possible.

However, pickpockets, sometimes in teams, operate in crowded tourist areas, and the train and metro stations (particularly at night) as well as parks (even in daytime) attract drug addicts and other shady types. Travellers should be particularly alert for distractions such as being asked for the time or directions and having attention diverted from their hand or shopping bag. Particularly popular at the moment seems to be the "soccer move distraction", when they suddenly stick their foot between your legs as if they are playing an imaginary soccer game. Avoid travelling with laptops at any time.

In the Parc de Bruxelles/Warandepark, between the Royal Palace and the Belgian Parliament, criminals have been noted threatening their victims with violence. Do not leave your bags unwatched but keep them close to your body. If you are robbed, there is a police office right next to the gate in front of the Belgian Parliament (on the right side when leaving the park, hidden in the bushes) where experienced policemen will help you. Most of them speak French, Dutch and English well.

In addition to the above advice be aware of Brussels Midi-Zuid train station, one of the poorest areas in the city: it is not advised to wander there alone at night.

In train stations, especially the Nord-Noord train station, scam artists show up in groups trying to distract you with some questions and steal your belongings. They are really professional, and business travelers are often targeted. When being approached by strangers in Brussels at any time, be very vigilant and keep your belongings in close sight.


source: Wikivoyage

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