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Osaka Safety: Am I Safe to Travel to Osaka, Japan in 2024?

Wondering about safety in Osaka for your trip? It's a typical traveler concern. Let's explore why Osaka is a safe and worthy adventure destination.

Tobi Miles
March 31, 2024
Osaka Safety: Am I Safe to Travel to Osaka, Japan in 2024?

Osaka, Japan's third-largest city, is renowned for its vibrant culture, delicious food, and warm hospitality. However, like any major city, it's wise to understand the safety landscape before you go. Rest assured, we'll guide you through the ins and outs of staying safe in Osaka, ensuring you're well-prepared for a fantastic trip.

Key Takeaways

  • Osaka is considered a safe city for travelers, with one of the lowest crime rates globally, highlighting a decreasing trend in crime rates over recent years.
  • While violent crimes are rare in Osaka, visitors should remain cautious of petty crimes like pickpocketing, especially in crowded areas, and adopt safety measures such as using anti-theft bags and staying aware of their surroundings.
  • Engaging respectfully with local culture and customs, including learning basic Japanese phrases and understanding local etiquette, enhances safety and improves the travel experience in Osaka.
  • Public transportation in Osaka is efficient and safe, but travelers should stay informed on schedules, mind their belongings, and be cautious when traveling at night.
  • In case of emergencies, knowing important contact numbers (e.g., police: 110, ambulance/fire: 119, Osaka General Medical Center: +81-6-6645-5454) and the availability of English-speaking services can provide vital assistance.
  • Preparation, awareness, and respect for local norms are key to ensuring a safe and enjoyable visit to Osaka.

Crime Rates in Osaka

When you're planning your trip to Osaka, it's crucial to look into the city's crime rates to get a comprehensive understanding of how safe you'll feel wandering around. The good news is, Osaka is remarkably safe for both residents and travelers alike. Japan, as a country, boasts one of the lowest crime rates globally, and Osaka is no exception to this rule.

To put things into perspective, here are some numbers:


Crime Rate per 100,000 Inhabitants







These statistics show a gradual decline in crime rates over the past few years, highlighting the effectiveness of Japan's law enforcement and the overall societal commitment to maintaining harmony and safety.

Violent crimes are exceedingly rare. You're more likely to encounter petty crimes like pickpocketing, especially in crowded areas or on public transport. To avoid such inconveniences, always keep your belongings secure and stay alert in bustling locales.

Another aspect to consider is scams targeting tourists, which are virtually nonexistent in Osaka. The Japanese culture of respect and honesty extends to how travelers are treated. However, staying informed about common travel scams worldwide will arm you even better during your journey.

Osaka's approach to public safety goes beyond policing; it includes well-lit streets, 24/7 security cameras in public spaces, and a helpful community ready to assist should you find yourself in an unexpected situation. It's these measures, among others, that contribute to the city's reputation as a safe haven for tourists.

Remember, your safety also depends on your actions and awareness. Stay informed, respect local customs, and exercise common sense to ensure a pleasant and secure visit.

Safety Precautions for Travelers

While Osaka is renowned for its safety, embracing certain precautions can enhance your security during your visit. Being informed and prepared is your first line of defense against any potential risks, however minimal they might be.

Stay Aware in Crowded Places

Osaka's bustling streets and tourist hotspots, such as Dotonbori and Shinsaibashi, are thrilling to explore but also attract pickpockets. Keeping your belongings secure and maintaining awareness of your surroundings can greatly reduce the risk of petty theft.

  • Keep valuables close: Use anti-theft bags or keep your valuables in inner jacket pockets.
  • Stay vigilant: Be especially cautious in crowded areas and during night time.

Use Technology Wisely

Technology offers fantastic tools for staying safe. Apps for emergency services and maps can be lifesavers in unfamiliar environments. However, it's crucial to use technology responsibly to avoid becoming a target.

  • Download safety apps: Apps like Japan Official Travel App provide useful information and emergency contacts.
  • Be discreet with devices: Flashing expensive gadgets can attract unwanted attention. Use them discreetly.

Understand Local Scams

Though Osaka is virtually free of tourist scams, being knowledgeable about common scams elsewhere helps maintain vigilance. Remember, if an offer seems too good to be true, it likely is.

Engage with Locals Respectfully

Osakans are incredibly friendly and helpful to visitors. Understanding and respecting local customs not only enriches your experience but also fosters positive interactions. Simple gestures, such as polite greetings and thanks, can go a long way.

  • Learn basic Japanese phrases: Phrases like "Sumimasen" (Excuse me) and "Arigatou" (Thank you) are essential.
  • Respect local etiquette: Be mindful of local norms and etiquette to avoid inadvertently offending anyone.

By adopting these straightforward measures, you can ensure your trip to Osaka is not only enjoyable but also secure. Remember, the key to a safe travel experience lies in preparation and respect for the destination's culture and norms.

Public Transportation Safety

When you're exploring Osaka, knowing about public transportation safety is crucial for a worry-free trip. Osaka's public transportation system is renowned for its efficiency and cleanliness, yet, like any major city, it's wise to stay alert.

Stay Informed on Schedules and Routes

Osaka's transport network, encompassing trains, subways, and buses, operates with remarkable punctuality. Familiarizing yourself with the schedules and routes of the Osaka Metro and JR lines will save you time and minimize the risk of getting lost. Websites and apps like Hyperdia and Google Maps are invaluable tools for real-time information.

Mind Your Belongings

Though cases of theft are comparatively low, it's essential to keep an eye on your valuables, especially in crowded stations like Umeda and Namba. Investing in anti-theft bags or waist packs can provide an additional layer of security.

Night-Time Travel

Traveling at night through Osaka's public transportation system is generally safe. However, it's advisable to stay in well-lit areas and avoid empty carriages. Be mindful that some train lines stop running shortly after midnight, so plan your journey accordingly to avoid being stranded.



Crime Rate

Osaka has a significantly lower crime rate compared to other major cities globally.

Pickpocketing Risk

Low, but higher in crowded places

Public Transport Incident Rate

Very low, with incidents rarely reported

Remember, staying aware of your surroundings and keeping your belongings secure are your best defenses. With a bit of caution, you'll enjoy all that Osaka has to offer, utilizing its public transportation system to its fullest.

Emergency Contacts in Osaka

While exploring Osaka, it's crucial to have a list of emergency contacts. Japan's commitment to public safety is commendable, but it's always best to be prepared. Here’s what you need to keep on hand:

  • Police: Dial 110 for immediate assistance. Osaka's police are well-versed in handling a range of situations from theft to more urgent safety concerns.
  • Ambulance and Fire Services: In case of a medical emergency or a fire, 119 is the number to call. These services are prompt, and operators are increasingly accommodating non-Japanese speakers.
  • Osaka General Medical Center: For health-related concerns, this center is a reliable option. They offer emergency services and have staff who can communicate in English.

Essentials for Non-Japanese Speakers

If you’re not fluent in Japanese, navigating an emergency situation can be daunting. However, Osaka has made significant strides in catering to tourists. Here are a few tips:

  • Use a translation app: Technology can be a lifesaver. Having a translation app readily available on your phone can help bridge the communication gap.
  • Locate English-speaking staff: In major transport hubs and tourist centers, look for staff or volunteers who can speak English.

Tourist Safety Points

For personalized assistance, Osaka has set up Tourist Safety Points throughout the city. These are spots where you can get help, whether it's directions, emergency aid, or just general advice. They're typically located in areas with high tourist traffic, ensuring that help is never too far away.


Contact Number





Osaka General Medical Center


Remember, being prepared doesn’t mean expecting the worst. It’s about ensuring your peace of mind so you can fully enjoy your travels in Osaka. Stay informed, stay safe, and dive into the rich experiences this city has to offer.


You've got the essentials to navigate Osaka safely and confidently. Remember, having emergency contacts at your fingertips and knowing how to reach out for help, especially if you're not fluent in Japanese, is key. Translation apps and English-speaking locals in tourist areas are invaluable resources. Don't forget about the Tourist Safety Points scattered around the city, ready to assist you whenever needed. With these tips in mind, you're all set to enjoy everything Osaka has to offer, from its stunning sights to its delicious cuisine, with peace of mind.

Frequently Asked Questions

What emergency numbers should I dial in Osaka, Japan?

In Osaka, you should dial 110 for the police and 119 for ambulance and fire services. It's crucial to remember these numbers for any emergency situations.

Can non-Japanese speakers find help easily in Osaka?

Yes, non-Japanese speakers can find help by using translation apps and seeking out English-speaking staff in tourist areas. There are also Tourist Safety Points throughout Osaka where travelers can receive assistance.

What are Tourist Safety Points?

Tourist Safety Points are designated places in Osaka where travelers can go for help and information. These spots are especially useful for foreigners needing assistance with directions, emergency services, or general inquiries about the city.

How important is it to have emergency contacts while traveling in Osaka?

Having emergency contacts while traveling in Osaka is crucial. It ensures that you have immediate access to essential services like the police, ambulance, and fire services, providing peace of mind during your travels.

Are there medical services readily available for tourists in Osaka?

Yes, the Osaka General Medical Center is available for tourists who need medical assistance. Furthermore, knowing how to reach out to emergency services (119) can be vital in urgent situations.

Tobi Miles
Article updated:
March 31, 2024
A nomadic wordsmith savoring the world's flavors and penning stories that turn every journey into an epic.
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