With increased media coverage and the current state of affairs in the world, safety has become a concern for every traveler. To ensure you and your family are safe, make sure you know how safe your next destination is before you go.
While the primary concern for tourists in Jamaica is theft, the U.S. State Department has reported that theft has turned into armed robbery that then became violent on several occasions. Kingston and Montego Bay are two areas on this tropical island to be wary of your surroundings.
Additionally, stay away from areas that appear impoverished and stick to tourist areas to avoid higher density crime areas.
Murder Rate: 45.1 people per 100,000
A popular spot for beachgoers and partiers alike, this country’s crime rate is no joke. According to Brazilian police, crime rates continue to be high in heavily populated, urban areas such as Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo. Additionally, rates are starting to grow outside of these areas as well and spread into rural communities.
While traveling in Brazil you’ll be exposed to radio stations with the sole purpose of listing missing persons and cars with reinforced windows and doors to protect the passengers. Business travelers will often travel with a specific driver who provides door-to-door service as a safety measure as these individuals may appear to be prime targets for kidnappings as the criminal will think they can hold them for a hearty ransom since they appear to come from money when nicely dressed in a suit.
Murder Rate: 32.4 people per 100,000
At this point most people have heard the horrific stories of tourists being taken on fake day-long excursions or tour buses in Mexico and held for ransom or violently attacked, especially as the drug cartels’ activity increased in this country.
While the Mexican government is making serious strides towards improving safety, tourists should be aware of their surroundings at all times and know that other tourists have fallen victim to kidnappings, shootings, robberies, and murder here.
Murder Rate: 22 people per 100,000
According to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, Honduras has the highest homicide rate in the world.
Murder Rate: 91.6 people per 100,000
Most of crime in this country known for its rainforests, coral reef, and Mayan ruins is located in Belize City, however, tourist areas also feature high incident rates for crime.
Murder Rate: 44.7 people per 100,000
6. South Africa
While South Africa has become a popular place to visit for surfers, hikers, and those interested in shark cage diving, its crime rates still keep some visitors wary, and for good reason.
According to the U.S. State Department, both locals and tourists are subject to violent crimes such as armed robberies, rape, and mugging regularly.
Murder Rate: 35.7 people per 100,000
This picture-esque escape has experienced a recent spike in crime rates that is causing alarm from the U.S. State Department. Tourists have become targets of frequent armed robberies that are occurring in the popular area of Nassau.
Unlike some of the other vacation spots on this list, this crime rate is increasing specifically in the typical tourist areas, rather than in areas typically populated with locals. They like to hit cruises that go to the Bahamas and wait for them to come off the ship to site see.
Murder Rate:32.1 people per 100,000
8. Dominican Republic
While pickpocketing has always been a threat when visiting this island for its beaches and luxury resorts, there recently has been an increase in violent attacks here. These attacks are not limited to tourists but are affecting locals as well.
Take note that crime rates here tend to rise around Christmas, and visitors should take caution when on the island between November and January.
Murder Rate: 25.4 people per 100,000
9. U.S. Virgin Islands
If you talk to locals, many of them will tell you to get back to your hotel before the sun goes down. If you’re visiting, it will serve you well to do your research first so you can stay in a safe location as there is a prominent red light district on St. Thomas that is known by locals as crime-ridden, especially robberies. Also, learn how to tell if a safari taxi is safe to get on or not before you explore the island.
Murder Rate: 39.2 people per 100,000
10. Trinidad and Tobago
This set of islands is known for lively festivals, but its crime rates remain high for both locals and tourists. Keep your wits about you when you visit to stay safe with your family.
Murder Rate: 35.2 people per 100,000
Make sure to check out my list of the 5 most common misconceptions about travel insurance!