Swat is considered a very safe valley for foreign & domestic male and female tourists. Occasionally there are hazardous things in swat valley such as glacier sliding, snowstorms, and floods that are dangerous and should be avoided, it is, for the most part, completely safe to travel to swat, and if you use your common sense, your trip should go smoothly.
Safety and security in Swat Valley is the No.1 priority of swat police and the Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, therefore, they encourage and advise both local and foreign tourists to visit swat valley with confidence as the safety and security situation has improved.
Swat Travel Advice – Current Safety and Security Situation
The new swat travel advice is good news for both local and foreign tourists. The Government of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has proudly issued a new swat travel advisory following the improved safety and security situation in swat. The latest guidelines along with the advisory statement on swat direct both local and foreign tourists the same care as they would in any other safe country or at home.
Safety and Security Through the People of Swat
The local people of Swat Valley (Pashtuns) always go to great lengths to show their hospitality and make the visitors feel safe and comfortable when visiting Swat. It’s a well-known fact about the local people of swat that they show great hospitality and have profound respect for all visitors, regardless of race, religion, national affiliation, or economic status, and doing so without any hope of remuneration or favor.
The Role of Pashtunwali In Safety of Swat Valley
Pashtunwali “the code of life of the Pashtun people” mainly revolves around hospitality, forgiveness, justice, bravery, loyalty, righteousness, faith, respect (pride and courage), protection of women, honor, manhood or chivalry, and country. These are the principles of the Pashtun lifestyle. Considering these high moral principles of the locals, your visit to the Swat Valley will be as safe, secure, and pleasant as you would expect.
Security for Female Travelling to Swat Valley
Pashtunwali promotes respect and security for women. Violence against women is culturally unacceptable. It’s a moral liability of every Pashtun that they must protect women. During your visit to Swat Valley, you may encounter local strangers helping you. This is normal in the valley and nothing to worry about.
Lifestyle in Swat Valley in Terms of Security and Safety
To know whether or not a place is safe for a visit, it is important to understand the lifestyle and traditions of the locals. Security for visitors mainly come from the local people. If the local people are peace and adhere to the golden rules of tranquillity in their day-to-day lives then there are very fewer chances that you would encounter any unforeseen situation.
Advice on General Safety and Security for Tourists
The overall crime rate in swat is very low however we recommend that you shouldn’t be vigilant and should look after yourself as you would do in any other safe place in the world. Here are some safety tips for the tourists that you should consider when traveling to any new place in the world.
- Don’t wear expensive jewelry and watches.
- Don’t carry large sums of money and consider wearing a money belt.
- Don’t use your mobile phone in the street and keep cameras out of sight when not in use.
- Leave your passport and other valuables in a safe place but carry a copy and another form of photo ID, if you have one, with you at all times.
- Keep the local police or emergency telephone number with you all the time.
- Reach out to the swat police for help as soon as possible if you suspect any danger or feel at risk.
Advice on How to stay safe on foot in Swat?
- When out walking anywhere in swat, always attempt to walk facing the traffic so that a car cannot pull up behind you.
- If you think someone is following you, check by safely crossing to the other side of the street – cross more than once if necessary. If the person behind you crosses also and you believe that your suspicions are confirmed, stay to main, busy routes until you get to the first safe place and contact the police. Avoid using a phone box in the street as this gives the person following you an opportunity to trap you.
- If you regularly go jogging or cycling, try to vary your route and the time you go. Stick to well-lit, preferably busy, roads with pavements, and avoid wooded areas.
- Don’t take short-cuts through dark alleyways, parks, or waste ground.
How Can I Keep Safe When Traveling Across Swat and Doing Activities?
Visitors to Swat often want to explore all the valley has to offer. The public transport system in Swat is very well organized but is generally very is safe; however, here are some things to bear in mind when on the move:
- Stay aware when cycling, driving, and crossing roads in the Swat – vehicles are driven on the left-hand side of the road so traffic may come from a different direction than expected.
- If you are driving, make sure you have a driving license that is valid in the Swat (Pakistan) and that your motor insurance is valid if required.
- It is illegal in the Swat to drive whilst using a handheld mobile phone or device.
- Plan your journey ahead.
- For more advice about keeping safe whilst traveling on foot, by car or public transport, visit our Safety and Security in Swat.
- If you are cycling around the swat valley, then take a look at our advice on how to Keep your Bike Secure.
- Swat is a fantastic place for outdoor adventure – If you are going hillwalking or mountaineering then look at our advice on Mountain and Outdoor Safety before you set off to help you keep safe.
Advice on Self Safety When Meeting New People in Swat?
Meeting new people while you are on your holiday trip in swat is generally safe, however, you need to take great care as not everyone may be who they say they are or who they appear to be.
- The first time you get together, meet, and stay in a populated public place. If you see the person again, meet this way until you feel safe enough to do otherwise.
- Tell someone where you’re going, who you’re meeting, and when you’ll be back.
If possible, make arrangements to go with a friend.
- Don’t accept a lift from a stranger however genuine they appear to be.
- Don’t fall for hard-luck stories it could be part of a con aimed at exploiting you financially.
Advice Taxis or Private Hire Cars to Travel Safe in Swat?
Traveling by taxi or private hire car in swat is a safe way of getting to where you’re going. However, criminals may occasionally masquerade as licensed taxi drivers in an attempt to lure people into their cars. Take some simple steps to keep safe when you’re using a taxi or private hire car in swat:
- If you know a taxi company you are happy with, try and use them regularly and keep their number on your phone.
- Pre-book your taxi home before you leave the hotel, or at the very least before the end of your night out.
- Choose a well-lit area to be collected from where other people are likely to be about. Avoid isolated or remote areas.
- When booking a private hire car, ask the company to text you when the taxi has arrived. This means you can avoid waiting in the street and will have your own journey record. Consider choosing a company that offers this service.
- Make sure you’ve got enough money to pay for your journey.
- If you’ve ordered a private hire car, make sure the one that arrives is yours – have the driver confirm the details to you.
- Taxis can ply for trade but private hire cars can’t and must be pre-booked. Don’t make an on-street arrangement with a private hire car driver as it won’t be recorded by the company.
- Don’t jump a taxi rank queue as this is likely to lead to confrontation. Follow the instructions of any rank marshals who may be present.
- NEVER get into a vehicle unless you’re sure it’s either the private hire car you ordered or a licensed taxi – all taxis and private hire car vehicles must have local authority plates and rear window stickers indicating the company name.
- When you arrive at the hotel, ask the driver to wait until you get safely into your hotel before they drive away.
- The driver should have national identity cards, taxi stand cards, and driving licenses which you can ask to see this.
- When ordering a taxi from a public place, be discreet, don’t shout out all your details. You don’t know who is listening in.
- Try and share a taxi with a friend, particularly if you’ve been drinking. If you’re on your own then sit in the back seat.
- Always wear a seatbelt – it’s the law and more importantly it’s for your own safety.
- If you’re unhappy about the conduct of the driver then contact the local authority licensing department or the police. If you don’t feel confident to ask the driver for his details or badge number, ensure you note the taxi / private hire car license number and local authority. This information is on the plates attached to the front and rear of the vehicle and sometimes on a door sticker.
How to Cope in an Emergency Situation in Swat?
An emergency situation is any situation that poses an immediate threat to a person’s health, security, property, or environment. Although emergencies require rapid action, the most important factor in effectively handling the situation is to keep calm.
Determine the nature of the emergency. What signs indicate that there is an emergency? Is this a medical emergency, or is there a threat to the property/building that may result in human injury? It’s important to stop and take inventory of the situation calmly before reacting to the emergency. Should you require professional help, call the local emergency and rescue service number at 1122 from any phone in Swat.