Naples has a reputation for being unsafe. The following are some basic safety tips:

  • Pickpockets are highly active on crowded transport and in crowds. Avoid keeping money, credit cards and other valuables in easy-to-reach pockets, especially coat and back pockets.
  • Never leave bags unattended on a train. At cafes and bars, loop your bag's strap around your leg while seated.
  • Be cautious of strangers who want your attention, especially at train stations and ports.
  • Wear bags and cameras across your body and away from the road to avoid scooter-riding petty thieves.
  • At archaeological sites, beware touts posing as legitimate guides.

On the Road

Car theft is a problem in Naples, so it pays to leave your car in a supervised car park. If you leave your car on the street, you'll often be approached by an unofficial (illegal) parking attendant asking for money. Clearly, you don't have to pay them, but if you refuse you run the risk of returning to a damaged car. In case of theft or loss, always report the incident to the police within 24 hours; ask for a statement, as otherwise your travel-insurance company won't pay out.

Scams

Avoid buying mobile phones and other discounted electrical goods from vendors on Piazza Garibaldi in Naples and at street markets. It's not unusual to get home and discover that you've bought a box with a brick in it. At Napoli Centrale, ignore touts offering taxis; use only registered white taxis with a running meter.

Traffic

Neapolitan traffic requires some getting used to. Drivers are not keen to stop for pedestrians, even at pedestrian crossings, and are more likely to swerve. Locals simply step off the footpath and walk through the (swerving) traffic with determination. It is a practice that seems to work, but if you feel uncertain, wait and cross with a local.

In many cities, roads that appear to be for one-way traffic have lanes for buses travelling in the opposite direction – always look both ways before stepping onto the road.