Having lived here for around 12 of the last 18months I find myself agreeing with practically everything the report states. Here are a few of the most pertinent sections:
Traffic accidents are still the primary threat to private sector safety in Argentina, especially in Buenos Aires. Pedestrians should be vigilant when crossing streets and remember to look both ways, even if the street is designated one-way. Traffic laws are routinely disobeyed and vehicles often travel at excessive speeds. Recently published statistics report that over 7,500 deaths occurred in Argentina in 2006 due to traffic accidents.
Crime is a serious problem in Argentina that can be managed with common sense precautions.
How to Avoid Becoming a Victim
Carry no more than US $100-200 or 300-400 pesos. Criminals in Argentina frequently resort to violence if they perceive a victim is being uncooperative or if the target does not have anything worth stealing. The people most likely to be attacked or beaten are those without any money. If confronted, offer no resistance and immediately hand over everything demanded.
Do not wear Rolexes, or other flashy or expensive jewelry that draws attention.
Women should safeguard their purses while walking and when eating in restaurants or cafes. Criminals are often well dressed and crime can occur anytime during the day at any location. Use common sense and remain vigilant.
Travel in groups when possible. Always stay in the well lit, populated areas and avoid parks after dark.
Be alert to pick pocketing in tourist and shopping areas. Do not flash large amounts of cash, or carry expensive looking bags, briefcases, or laptop cases in public.
Do not carry all of your important documents in your wallet or purse. Carry a photocopy of your passport.
Use ATM machines located in public places like the hotel, shopping mall, or event venue. If the booth has a door, make sure it closes behind you.
If you are in a restaurant or other business that gets robbed, follow the instructions of the robbers and hand over valuables on demand.
Beware of the "mustard on the back scam." Unknown to you, a liquid is squirted on your back. After a few steps, someone, often a middle-aged woman, will inform you that you have something on your back and offer to help clean it off. Meanwhile, she or an accomplice picks your pockets. This scam is common in tourist areas such as San Telmo, La Boca, 9 de Julio, Recoleta, and Florida Street. Fortunately, this is one of the least confrontational crimes, just say "NO" and walk away.
Pay with exact change as much as possible. If you pay for a small item with a large bill, you risk being shortchanged or getting counterfeit in change. Only take pesos as change.
Use credit cards only at the hotel and major stores and restaurants. Watch your bills carefully for fraudulent charges.
"Remises" (hired car and driver) are the best public transportation.
They charge by the kilometer and are reasonably priced. Hotels, many restaurants, and shopping centers can call one from an established service.
Radio taxis are the next best choice. Taxis are black and yellow in the Capital, and white with blue lettering in the Province.
Avoid black and yellow taxis with the word MANDATARIA on the door.
These taxis are rented on a daily or hourly basis and are often involved in criminal acts.
Do not take rides offered by people on the street or outside an airport.
Depending on circumstances, visitors in need of taxi services should either call for a remise or taxi, take one from an established stand, or hail one on the street (but not in front of a bank), in this respective order.
Use the seatbelts, lock the doors, and keep the windows up. Do not place your purse or other valuables on the seats in plain view from the outside or unattended.
Subways, buses, and trains are safe but watch out for pickpockets and be ready for work stoppages.
Watch your bags at airports, bus, and ship terminals.