For travelers already in the country, this conversation makes everyone’s eyes roll with impatience, simply because if you were too scared to come, you wouldn’t be here.
Travelers are sometimes surprised at how normal everything is in Colombia, how straightforward it is to get around and do things, the kindness of the people, etc. Why isn’t Colombia more popular? It has a horrible reputation, for one. Less than a week before I bought my ticket, the US State Dept put out a new travel warning for Colombia saying that there is an increase in crime and kidnappings of Americans, murders are up, and so on and to “warn American citizens of the dangers of travel to Colombia”.
So why come here if that is so? The most dangerous places are where there’s guerrilla and drug activity–often two sides of the same coin–and which are pretty much delineated. Plus, they are generally places where tourists don’t go.
The only notable exceptions are on some overnight bus routes and sometimes the most popular hostels get robbed. The former you can avoid by taking day buses, but the latter can just be dumb luck. Asking both locals and travelers for the latest, freshest news can mitigate your risk.
Easy! Problem solved! So glad I am here to help!