Luxembourg 2015 Crime and Safety Report
Travel Health and Safety; Stolen items; Theft; Burglary; Drug Trafficking
Europe > Luxembourg; Europe > Luxembourg > Luxembourg
Overall Crime and Safety Situation
Crime Rating: Medium
Residential burglaries are the primary threat facing residents. Police report that these incidents generally spike in the summer, when many residents take extended vacations. Police often indicate that many residents do not take precautions before leaving their homes (ensuring their mail is picked up, setting timers on lights inside their homes).
Additionally, petty street crimes of opportunity (pickpocketing, purse-snatching, particularly in recognized tourist areas) continue to occur with some frequency.
Violent crimes (homicide, aggravated assault, sexual assault) are uncommon, although not unheard of.
While service providers are modern and efficient, they are susceptible to hacking and unauthorized intrusions. Users should have anti-virus software installed on any computer hooked up to the Internet, and should exercise caution when downloading files or following links sent from unknown email addresses.
Areas of Concern
There are no areas of Luxembourg that are considered “off limits” for U.S. government personnel. The neighborhood surrounding the main train station, referred to locally as the “Quartier Gare,” does have a slightly higher crime rate than the rest of the city. While the train station itself is considered safe, travelling the side streets that intersect the area, particularly at night, can expose individuals to a greater risk for becoming a victim of crime. Most of the adult entertainment clubs in Luxembourg are found in this area, and open prostitution and narcotics trafficking occurs on a small scale. While police maintain a continuous presence and work diligently to enforce the law, when contrasted with the level of safety found in the rest of the city, the Quartier Gare is an area of concern.
Road Safety and Road Conditions
Main roads and highways are often comparable to those found in the U.S. Well-illuminated and well-maintained, they present no inherent dangers for perspective motorists. Many towns and villages are connected by smaller, older, and more challenging roads, which are often winding and not illuminated. Drivers should use caution whenever travelling outside of major thoroughfares.
Drivers should also carry a blank accident report in their vehicle, available through all local insurance companies. This report is necessary for any accident not involving injury; typically, police do not respond to these types of accidents, and it is the driver’s responsibility to exchange information and file the report with their insurance companies. In the event of injury, police should be notified immediately.
Driving under the influence of alcohol is also a concern. Police report that a majority of accidents may be attributed to an impaired driver. While laws concerning driving under the influence of alcohol are not as strict as most found in the U.S., it is considered illegal, and drivers face substantial fines if caught.
Public Transportation Conditions
Luxembourg has an excellent record regarding public transportation. Virtually every part of the country is reachable by bus or train; both are safe and reliable. Within the city, it is not uncommon to see young children riding public buses unaccompanied by adults, as Luxembourgers have a high level of confidence in their public transportation.
The main airport is approximately 15 minutes from the city center. Although small, Findel Airport is well equipped to handle the volume of international traffic it receives annually. There are presently no direct flights from Luxembourg to the United States. Airport security procedures are similar to those found throughout Western Europe, and meet all U.S. aviation standards. Passengers and cargo are screened using modern equipment, by a cadre of trained aviation security professionals.
There is little crime reported at the airport. The Embassy did receive several reports of lost or stolen passports; in each case, the passport was determined to have been left unattended for a short period.
Political, Economic, Religious, and Ethnic Violence
Political Violence Rating: Low
Local, Regional, and International Terrorism Threats/Concerns
There are no known terrorist organizations operating in Luxembourg, but given Luxembourg’s open borders with France, Belgium and Germany, Luxembourg shares many of the regional concerns regarding the potential for a terrorist attack. According to open source reporting, as many as a half-dozen Luxembourgers have travelled to Syria in support of ISIL and other extremist organizations; however, there is no evidence of widespread support for this type of ideology among the local population.
Terrorism Rating: Low
Generally, the U.S. is held in high regard throughout Luxembourg, owing largely to American efforts in liberating Luxembourg from Nazi occupation during World War II. Many local monuments fly Luxembourgish and American flags jointly.
There were several small scale protests held in reaction to U.S. foreign policy in 2014, primarily focused on U.S. support for Israel during hostilities between Israelis and Palestinians. Additionally, several small protests focused on U.S and EU economic policy, specifically rallying against the proposed renewal of the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, or T-TIP. There were no reported incidents in 2014 of any individuals being subjected to harassment for being American.
Protests tend to be small, well-organized, and non-violent and are generally sanctioned in advance by local authorities. Civil unrest, to include labor strikes, is extremely rare. The government is highly permissive in allowing freedom of assembly, and groups wishing to hold protests or rallies need only apply for a permit to do so. These gatherings are virtually free of violence, proceed according to pre-arranged plans, and are generally without incident.
From July-December 2015, Luxembourg will host the Presidency of the European Union, and there is a potential for increased civil unrest during this period, as Luxembourg becomes the public face of the EU. Local authorities have spent many months in planning and preparation and have developed multiple contingency plans in anticipation of this possibility.
Although predominantly Catholic, Luxembourg has a long history of religious tolerance and acceptance of its ever-increasing ethnic diversity. Violence stemming from either of these areas is virtually non-existent.
Luxembourg has some of the strictest laws in the EU regarding an individual’s civil rights and rights to privacy. Luxembourgers are fiercely protective of these rights, and rarely entertain notions of expanding the state’s ability to infringe upon them.
Drug use is commensurate with other cities of comparable size. Laws are similar to those in the U.S.; most drugs considered Schedule I in America are also illegal in Luxembourg. Crimes related to narcotics do occur, often in the form of robberies to obtain money for drugs or in disputes between narcotics traffickers; however, they are typically isolated incidents and do not generally affect the majority of residents.
Luxembourg employs a well-trained and well-equipped police force, which places a great emphasis on customer service. Police are highly professional and can be relied upon for assistance. Many speak English, and the emergency number will always have an English speaking operator available.
How to Handle Incidents of Police Detention or Harassment
There were no reported incidents of police harassment in 2014. Any American citizen detained by the police in Luxembourg should request notification to the U.S. Embassy Consular Section. (+352) 46 01 23.
Crime Victim Assistance
To contact police, dial 113.
The general emergency number is 112, which includes police, fire, and ambulance services.
Law enforcement agencies fall under the authority of the Ministry of Interior. They are organized similarly to those in the U.S., with local police responsible for the day-to-day enforcement of criminal law, traffic regulations, and incident response. Additionally, there are specialized units responsible for investigations and crisis response.
Contact Information for Recommended Hospitals/Clinics
There are 4 general hospitals in Luxembourg City; emergency rooms operate on a 24 hour rotational basis. The on-call emergency room is obtained by dialing 112.
Centre Hospitalier de Luxembourg 4 rue Barblé, L-1210
Tel: 4411-11 ER: 4411-2132
Open weekdays 08.00-17.00
Clinique d’Eich, 78 rue d’Eich, L-1460
Tel: 4411-12 ER: 4411-7240
Open weekdays 08.00-16.00
Clinique St.Thérèse 36 rue Zithe, L-2763
Tel: 49776-1 ER: 49776-5519
Open weekdays 07.00-19.00
Hôpital Kirchberg 9 rue Edward Steichen, L-2540
Tel: 2468-1 ER: 2468-5600
Weekdays with appointment
Recommended Air Ambulance Services
Medical authorities will typically make the determination if air ambulance services are required. This service is provided by the government. Most injuries are treatable in Luxembourg. However, in extreme cases, burn victims may be transported to Brussels, Belgium, or Nancy, France.
Recommended Insurance Posture
Emergency room visits are generally free of charge; however, extend medical care will require either U.S. or local insurance.
CDC Country-specific Vaccination and Health Guidance
For additional information on vaccines and health guidance, please visit the CDC at: http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/luxembourg.
Tips on How to Avoid Becoming a Victim
Situational Awareness Best Practices
By taking simple precautions and maintaining a heighted level of awareness, it is possible to reduce the likelihood of becoming a victim. When travelling in common tourist areas, do not display large amounts of cash. Men should carry wallets in the front pocket of their pants, women should ensure bags are secured and held firmly while walking through crowds. At home, ground floor windows should be closed at night or while the residence is unoccupied. When on vacation, ensure that a friend or neighbor picks up your mail, and use timers to randomly turn lights on and off.
U.S. Embassy Location and Contact Information
Embassy Address and Hours of Operation
United States Embassy Luxembourg
22 Blvd. Emmanuel Servais
Embassy Contact Numbers
Main switchboard 24 Hours – (+352) 46 01 23
OSAC Country Council Information
Point of Contact – U.S. Embassy Regional Security Officer Darren Adler (+352) 46 01 23. To reach OSAC’s Europe team, please email OSACEUR@state.gov.