Is East London Safe: The Ultimate Safety Guide For Solo Travel [2024]

East London has a reputation for being a rough and dangerous area, but is it as unsafe as people make it out to be? Is East London Safe? The truth is, yes, overall, East London is safe. However, East London’s annual crime rate of 33.3 is actually 88% higher than the national average. What’s more, violent crime makes up a significant portion of this total, with 34.1K incidents being reported per annum.

Where to Stay in East London

Unfortunately, this number is also 2.6% higher when compared to the same period from last year. To put that into perspective, East London ranks 31 out of 94 postcode areas in terms of its violent crime rate – not the best, certainly, but not the worst either. Whether you’re moving or visiting, it pays to know what you’re getting into in order to stay safe.

With some tips on how to stay safe in London from a Londoner, basic common sense and awareness, East London can be a safe and enjoyable place to live or visit, even as a solo traveller.

Note: In the Economist’s Safe Cities Index – London ranks as the 15th safest city in the world with an overall score of 77.2% among other major cities. London was also ranked 14th with a score of 74.4% for the personal security category and is considered a very safe city. Although many large cities like London are considered safe, it is important to add an extra layer of security with a budget-friendly and comprehensive travel insurance plan from Safety Wing. By investing in this safeguard, you can rest assured knowing that your family will be well taken care of while on global travels.

One of the first things to note is that East London is a large and multicultural area with various neighbourhoods and communities. East London encompasses the following boroughs: Barking and Dagenham, Hackney, Havering, Newham, Tower Hamlets, and Redbridge Waltham Forest.

Yes, some of these boroughs, like Hackney, Tower Hamlets and Newham, consistently ranked among the most dangerous boroughs in London. And also some of the most deprived areas in London (compared with West London or the South East), resulting in high levels of poverty and crime.

Despite this, the East End has undergone significant regeneration in recent years. Many places, once considered dangerous areas have been transformed into vibrant and thriving communities.

Shoreditch streets

In fact, areas such as Shoreditch, Hackney, and Bethnal Green have become popular destinations for young professionals, creatives and families due to affordable housing and new businesses, restaurants and excellent schools in these boroughs in London.

Is East London Safe? 

So, Is East London Safe? Yes – East London is generally safe, no matter where you find yourself.

Although Metropolitan Police crime statistics may show that there are areas of high violent crime: antisocial behaviour, assault, and robbery have all been reported. The vast majority of these crimes are committed by a small group of people making this area relatively secure for both locals and visitors alike.

Shoreditch and Hoxton are some of the safest neighbourhoods you can find in the East End.

The East London region saw a significant surge in crime rates during the past 12 months. According to the Metropolitan Police, violence and sexual offences, theft from the person, other theft, and antisocial behaviour were some of the most common crimes reported.

Hoxton East and Shoreditch Crime map

To help curb the trend, their dedicated East London Unit is partnered with local agencies and community groups.

Through efficient risk assessment and proactive engagement with residents, they strive to tackle criminal activities in all its forms.

Another key way that the police are working to keep East London safe is through the use of CCTV cameras. The area has a comprehensive network of CCTV cameras monitored by the police and used to identify and track criminal activity such as gang fights or knife crimes.

Hoxton East and Shoreditch Crime levels overview

While travelling, it is important to take standard safety precautions in London, such as avoiding walks alone at night, not flaunting valuables in public and not flashing your phone as you walk down the street for people to grab.

By taking some preventative measures, you can help reduce your chances of becoming a victim of these types of crimes and stay safe in London.

Travel insurance is often an overlooked expense, but it’s important to consider – especially if you’re visiting London from another country. Safety Wings offers both easily obtainable quotes and reasonable prices, making it the perfect choice for anyone looking for quality travel insurance.

Markets in Shoreditch London UK

Is East London Safe at Night? 

The truth is that East London is generally relatively safe to be in at night. Areas like Shoreditch, Brick Lane and Stratford are usually busy and well-lit, with plenty of CCTV cameras in operation. But just like in any other major city or tourist destination, you should always follow common-sense safety precautions: 

  • Stick to well-lit and populated areas
  • Avoid confronting suspicious people 
  • Watch your wallet/purse
  • Watching your drink if you are at a bar or pub
  • Don’t get so drunk you blackout or are unable to walk this can leave you even more vulnerable to being attacked
  • Carry a personal safety alarm 

Is it safe to walk alone in East London?

Walking around East London during the day is usually safe. I’ve also always felt safe walking around East London at night. However, I am very familiar with the area and consider myself relatively street-smart.

I avoid walking alone in isolated or poorly lit areas at night and stay alert for any suspicious activity. 

shoreditch evening

Is East London Safe For Students? 

Yes, East London is safe for students, though some areas have higher crime rates. Overall the safety levels in East London mirror other areas of London.

East London is also frequented by university students from neighbouring universities on a night out or for a weekend brunch in East London. Because you can have a much cheaper night out in East London than in Central London, South London or South Kensington.

So if you are a student, you are safe and will feel right at home with the other party animals in East London.

Is East London Safe for Solo Travellers?

Yes, East London is generally safe for solo travellers. However, as with any large city, it is always important to take necessary precautions and stay aware of your surroundings. 

It is recommended to avoid walking alone at night in quiet or isolated areas and carrying a personal alarm with you. 

Additionally, staying in well-known and reputable areas, such as the bustling Hoxton, Brick Lane and Shoreditch, can help ensure a safe and enjoyable trip.

Shoreditch Boxpark UK

Is East London Safe to Live? 

The answer depends on who you ask! East London is considered very safe by its locals, who proudly call the area home. 

With affordable housing options, strong transportation systems, excellent amenities and top-notch police presence, neighbourhoods in East End remain desirable due to their walkability, community feel and overall commitment to safety and security.

What Is East London Crime Rate? 

According to Plumplot East London crime rate statistics: 

 ❌ The annual crime rate in East London is 33.4, which is 89% of the national average.

❌ 22.8% of all crimes reported in East London are violent crimes.

❌ The total number of “violent crimes” is 34.2k, which has increased by 3.6% compared year-over-year from November 2021 to October 2022.

❌ Most crimes in East London are antisocial behaviour crimes, making up 26.1% of all crimes committed.

❌ The crime rate for antisocial behaviour is 209% of the national average.

❌ Theft from the person is the highest-ranking crime category compared to the national average, at 415% of the national average. This makes up 4.8% of all crimes committed in East London.

❌ The total number of “theft from the person” cases has increased by 11.8%.

Overall many reports demonstrate a decrease in crime rates over recent years, particularly in the boroughs of Tower Hamlets, Newham, Hackney and Islington. That being said, there are still areas where stereotypically higher crime levels can be found throughout East London. 

best things to do in East London

East London Safety Tips  

✔️ Be aware of your surroundings

As with all big cities, it’s essential to be mindful of your surroundings and stay alert. This means keeping your wits about you and avoiding distractions like looking at your phone or listening to music with headphones while walking alone at night. 

Keep an eye out for potential dangers, such as pickpockets or suspicious individuals, and don’t be afraid to change your route, stick to crowded places at night or move away from an area if you feel uncomfortable.

✔️Stay in well-lit areas

Stick to well-lit areas and avoid dark alleys or deserted streets at night. This will make it easier for you to see potential dangers and for others to see you. 

✔️Use licensed taxis or ride-sharing services.

If you need to get around after dark, it’s best to use licensed taxis or ride-sharing services like Uber. This will ensure you’re getting a safe and reliable ride and make it easier for you to track your journey and contact emergency services if needed. 

Avoid hailing unlicensed taxis or getting into cars with strangers, as this can be dangerous.

East London Street Art Face

✔️Be aware of your alcohol intake

East London is home to many bars and clubs, and it’s easy to overdo it when you’re out having fun. However, excessive alcohol consumption can impair judgment and make you more vulnerable to crime or accidents. 

It’s important to stay within your limits and avoid getting too drunk, especially if you’re alone or in an unfamiliar area. Also, only take drinks from strangers if you have seen them poured by a bartender and even then, don’t take your eyes off your drinks. 

✔️Avoid confrontations

Facing someone who is aggressive or threatening can be a scary experience, but it’s important to remain calm and collected. Respond by using a level, polite tone and avoid making any sudden movements that might exasperate the situation. Doing this may help de-escalate the tension and allow you to flee the situation or call for help if needed.

You do not have to confront an agitated person or further agitate them with your words or actions. Keeping cool and being controlled can often help come out of such situations with minimal damage – both physically as well as mentally.

✔️Know where to find help

In an emergency situation, safety should always be your number one priority. Look out for available security guards and staff members to assist you. Don’t hesitate to contact the police or dial 999 for emergency services – they are there precisely to help in moments like these.

Be sure to familiarise yourself with the location of nearby hospitals and medical centres while planning your route, just in case urgent medical attention is needed.

✔️Use common sense 

Exercise good judgement and listen to your instincts; if something feels off-kilter then it’s best to seek a different option. It also pays off to reach out to locals or fellow travellers as you can gain valuable advice and assistance. And, when it comes down to it, err on the side of caution – better safe than sorry.

Is East London A Good Area To Live In? 

East London is an awesome place to live – it’s got so much to offer! The transport links make getting around the city a breeze, with options like the Overground, DLR, Underground networks, regular buses and river services.

colombia road in london

That means you can explore every corner of London without having to worry about how you’ll get there. On top of that, East London has a really unique culture with a huge array of events and activities going on.

From street food markets and music festivals to galleries and tours – there’s something for everyone in East London.

East London is also home to a thriving art and entertainment scene, with a host of galleries, museums and live music venues to explore. The area is renowned for its independent spirit, with a host of boutique shops, unique cafes in East London and bars in East London to discover. 

This vibrant arts and entertainment scene means that there is always something interesting and exciting happening in East London, whatever your interests may be.

Not only does East London have an illustrious history and impressive transportation systems, but it is also the perfect area for budget-savvy individuals to find a home. There are numerous properties available in this part of the area, from modern apartments and vintage row homes to refurbished warehouses – all offering tremendous value compared to prices elsewhere.

Docklands light railway in London

Another key benefit of living in East London is the access it provides to a range of green spaces to walk in East London and outdoor areas. The area is home to several beautiful parks and gardens, including Victoria Park, Hackney Marshes and Olympic Park, which offer residents the chance to enjoy some fresh air and open space.

Where To Stay In East London

When it comes to staying in East London, UK, there are a plethora of options to choose from. From budget-friendly accommodations to luxury hotels East London has something to offer for every traveller.

Travelodge London Stratford

The Travelodge London Stratford is an excellent choice for budget-minded travellers. Located just minutes from the Olympic Park and Westfield Stratford City shopping centre, this hotel offers simple but comfortable rooms at an unbeatable price. The hotel also boasts amenities like a café and fitness centre.

⭐️ Rating: 8.4/10 |📍 Location: Stratford| 🏩 View Latest Price On Booking

Premier Inn London City (Aldgate)

Situated in the fashionable neighbourhood of Aldgate, this hotel provides comfortable rooms without breaking the bank. The hotel also has many other convenient amenities, like a 24-hour front desk and an ideal location for exploring all London offers.

⭐️ Rating: 8.4/10 |📍 Location: Aldgate| 🏩 View Latest Price On Booking

Andaz Liverpool Street

Andaz Liverpool Street is a top pick for luxury tourists. This upscale hotel features comfortable rooms with all the latest amenities, including a fitness centre and a trendy bar/restaurant. Plus, its 24-hour concierge service makes it ideal for business travellers who need assistance around the clock.

⭐️ Rating: 8.4/10 |📍 Location: Liverpool Street| 🏩 View Latest Price On Booking

How To Get Around East London

East London is a pulsing, multicultural hub with plenty to do and see. Getting around this part of the city can be tricky, especially if you’re unfamiliar with the area. Still, several options are available to help you navigate your way around.

By Car

Getting around East London by car is one of the most convenient ways to explore this area. With a vast network of highways and roads, you’ll be able to navigate your way with ease – just remember to take into account the congestion charge in central London and parking fees that may apply

The major arterial routes are A12, A13, and A11; these will get you connected directly from East London right into the heart of city life.

By Train

If you’d rather not drive, why not take a train? You’ll be pleased to know that the train services are reliable and offer regular runs at all hours of the day and night. The Docklands Light Railway (DLR) is especially handy if you’re looking for easy access to other parts of London; some stations include Liverpool Street, Stratford, Dalston, and Canary Wharf.

By Tube

As an effective and speedy means of transport, the tube is a favoured choice in East London. At peak times it can become crowded, however, many lines converge through the region with crucial stops at Bethnal Green, Hackney Central and Mile End making travel simple and straightforward.

By Bike

For those of you who would like to savour the beauty of East London at a slower pace, cycling is your ideal mode of transportation. The area boasts dedicated bike lanes and serene streets, making it painless for cyclists. What’s even better? You can rent out a Santander bicycle for convenience – pick-up and drop-off locations are conveniently scattered around town.

By Bus

Exploring East London has never been more convenient, thanks to the multiple bus routes available. Buses are an ideal way of getting around if you’re looking to discover all that this area has to offer, as well as a great option for avoiding Central London’s costly congestion charges.

By River Boat

If you’re looking for a more scenic way to get around East London, the River Thames is a great option. You can take a river bus from several piers along the river, with regular services to key destinations such as Greenwich and the Tower of London.

Conclusion: Is East London Dangerous 

So there you have it. East London is less dangerous than some people make it out to be. Of course, like anywhere else in the world, some areas are better to avoid late at night.

But overall, East London is a vibrant and exciting place to live, work, and play. With a little common sense and awareness of your surroundings, you can enjoy all this part of town without worrying about your safety.

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