Press "Enter" to skip to content

US Issues Travel Advisory for Jamaica and Bahamas Amid Rising Crime Concerns

US Issues Travel Advisory for Jamaica and Bahamas Amid Rising Crime Concerns

Jamaica Advisory:

The U.S. Department of State has reissued a Level 3 travel advisory for Jamaica, cautioning American travelers to “reconsider travel” due to concerns about violent crime and unreliable medical services. The advisory highlights common incidents of violent crimes, including home invasions, armed robberies, sexual assaults, and homicides, even at all-inclusive resorts. The homicide rate in Jamaica is noted as among the highest in the Western Hemisphere. The State Department emphasizes that local police often respond inadequately to serious criminal incidents, and cases rarely result in conclusive sentences. Families of U.S. citizens facing unfortunate incidents may experience prolonged waits for death certificates from Jamaican authorities.

The advisory specifies prohibited areas for U.S. government personnel and highlights potential challenges with emergency services and hospital care in Jamaica. It urges Americans to obtain traveler’s insurance, including medical evacuation coverage. Additionally, it emphasizes that U.S. Medicare or Medicaid does not apply overseas, and most overseas hospitals do not accept U.S. health insurance.

Areas in Jamaica on Do Not Travel List:

  • St. Ann’s Parish
  • St. Catherine’s Parish
  • Clarendon Parish (except when passing through using specific highways)
  • St. Elizabeth’s Parish
  • Hanover Parish
  • St. James Parish and Montego Bay
  • Kingston and St. Andrew Parish
  • Cassava Piece, Downtown Kingston
  • Manchester Parish
  • St. Thomas Parish
  • Trelawny Parish
  • Westmoreland Parish

Safety Tips for Travelers to Jamaica:

  • Avoid walking or driving at night.
  • Avoid public buses.
  • Be aware of surroundings and keep a low profile.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).
  • Follow the Department of State on social media.
  • Review country security reports.

Bahamas Advisory:

The U.S. State Department has issued a Level 2 advisory for the Bahamas, advising travelers to “exercise increased caution” due to rising crime concerns, including burglaries, armed robberies, and sexual assaults. Specific areas of concern include New Providence (Nassau) and Grand Bahama. In Nassau, heightened vigilance is recommended in the “Over the Hill” area, where gang violence has contributed to a high homicide rate. Travelers are also cautioned about staying at short-term vacation rental properties without private security presence.

The advisory suggests avoiding activities like boat tours with commercial recreational watercraft, emphasizing inconsistent regulations and safety concerns. The U.S. Embassy in the Bahamas has issued additional safety precautions, and travelers are encouraged to enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) for alerts and emergency assistance.

Both advisories provide comprehensive safety tips and information for Americans considering travel to Jamaica and the Bahamas, urging caution and preparedness for potential emergency situations. The alerts come in response to recent incidents and ongoing safety concerns in these Caribbean destinations.

Be First to Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *