Current Safety in Tobago

Your questions on medical and security issues
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Paul Tallet
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Post by Paul Tallet » Mon Feb 20, 2006 2:21 am

Same the world over, Steve.

The Speed cameras in the UK are very effective at detecting speeding motorists and, yet, they fail to take photographs of the thugs mugging and robbing someone nearby.

Drive down any main road in the UK at 0400 in the morning at 100 mph and you are sure to attract the attention of a dozey police officer in his patrol car.

Likewise ... I was stopped in Tobago last year and given a stern rebuke for not wearing a seat belt ... and you cannot do speeds of more than 20 mph in that area.

Mind you ... I guess I was very naughty for not wearing a seat belt ... my children were quite shocked to see their father told off for doing such bad things.

Have to mend my ways ...

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Paul Tallet
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Andy D
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Post by Andy D » Mon Feb 20, 2006 11:11 am

Having just returned from the island yesterday i can honestly say that we,as a family,never once felt insecure or threatened by anyone.We went to lots of bays,beaches,villages etc and were always treated well by locals.Some remembered us from our last visit and it was a pleasure to see them again.
I did notice a higher Police presence whilst driving around the island,especially around the Scarborough, Mt Irvine and Buccoo areas.
The main thing though is that we all had a great holiday on the island and we're looking forward to going back again soon. :D

Mariann G.

Post by Mariann G. » Tue Feb 21, 2006 2:44 pm

Steve,

I would be very much interested to see what the news are on Mt. Irvine, having spent most of my time in the area until last Monday :shock:

Enjoy your stay,

Mariann

Anthony Townsend

Am I safe with a telescope, binoculars and a camera?

Post by Anthony Townsend » Mon Feb 27, 2006 7:05 pm

Hi! All these mails are starting to worry me. 8-[ We'll be staying in Bon Accord, but we also will have two nights at Blue Waters. I thought I'd be able to walk around birdwatching by myself or with my young family, but I'm having second thoughts. I'll feel safer when we go out with Newton George. Am I safe, walking round Crown Point, Store Bay, Pigeon point and Buccoo with my gear?

Thanks,

Anthony.

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Steve Wooler
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Post by Steve Wooler » Mon Feb 27, 2006 7:13 pm

Hi Anthony

You wouldn't believe how much time I spend "walking the streets" looking for accommodation properties and restaurants/cafes that I don't know, always with a very expensive camera around my neck. I make a point of going up roads I don't know, even though they invariably only contain local housing. Frankly, the biggest danger is dogs, although they invariably run off when you tell them to shut up. The only hassle I've ever experienced was from a young couple who recognised me and took issue with the fact that I'd never done a main review on the "amazing" guesthouse that they were staying at.
Steve Wooler
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Anthony Townsend

Post by Anthony Townsend » Mon Feb 27, 2006 7:24 pm

Thanks for cheering me up! :) . We are really looking forward to visiting Tobago with the kids. I guess we just need to be sensible. Thank you for all the hard work put into the site. It's great reading about everyone's plans and experiences!

Anthony.

Mariann G.

Post by Mariann G. » Tue Feb 28, 2006 4:03 pm

Hi Anthony,

My friend with whom I was in Tobago loves jogging. She tried to get me to go with her but I always had a very good excuse like aliens stole my shoes, too many drinks, too little drinks, sunburn etc :roll: Eventually she got fed up and decided to go on her own even though it was always dark by the time we got back from the beach.

She told me afterwards that she felt perfectly safe jogging in the dark in the Canaan / Bon Accord area, until the moment about 5 dogs showed up who would not leave her alone. Then, a few locals showed up and they saved her from the dogs. :D

Thereafter she tried to go jogging in the morning always.

Cheers,

Mariann

Nikos

Post by Nikos » Tue Feb 28, 2006 6:27 pm

Anthony,
Having been to Tobago twice (staying for three weeks each time, in various part of the island, most recently last September), I think it's ridiculous for anyone who lives in a European or American city to worry about safety in Tobago. We definitely felt safer in Tobago than in Athens - and Athens just might be the safest city in the world.
Having said that, applying the usual common sense can be your best friend. Just like anywhere. And isolated incidents can happen anywhere. Just be careful with your belongings and you'll be okay, unless you are very, very, very unlucky (or foolish). Once you go there and experience the island, you'll probably laugh at yourself for worrying too much.
Don't spoil your upcoming holiday with too much anxiety. Tobago is unsafe only in the sense that no place in the universe is totally safe. Otherwise, you won't find a friendlier and more laid-back island in the Caribbean.

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Gisela Grell
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Post by Gisela Grell » Fri Mar 03, 2006 11:26 am

Hello again,

thank you Nikos for this definately right words!
People don't worry if they open their daily newspapers and somebody was robbed in the next city/village because it is in the papers almost every day. You can't expect that on Tobago there will be no crime at all. In the end it is much less crime than anywhere else I've ever been on holidays.

If you just use your sense and don't run around with a lot of money hanging out of your pocket you will be as save/more save as anywhere else in the world.

Cheers
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Gisela
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see some pics on http://www.gisela-grell.de

Martin Jenkinson

Current Safety in Tobago

Post by Martin Jenkinson » Tue Mar 28, 2006 1:03 pm

Hello all

I have just recently returned back from Trinbago after spending 5 days in Trini for Carnival and then a further 10 days in Tobago... and all I can say is "Don't believe the hype"..! We stayed in a rental villa in Goodwood which had no 24hr security and we had no fears or issues what so ever. The only issues we had were a couple of local dogs that kept coming up for scraps of food.. But we used gentle methods to deter them from returning..

Tobago was relaxing and had an excellent vibe about the place.. Use common sense and don't try to stand out like a virgin tourist and you should be fine.. Hope you enjoy as I did..

Syd

Post by Syd » Fri Apr 07, 2006 11:14 pm

I've just read the Tobago news online and there are a couple of articles which would cause me some concern, if it wasn't for the faith I put in the relatively positive reports on the forum.
The 'Coppin' article really goes to town on the high crime rate, including one quote, "Living in Trinidad and Tobago is becoming a precarious walk through hell"
It mentions stats in T&T if over one murder a day, although I suspect that this is mainly due to Trinidads contribution.
There are also comments on the diabolical state of the police and criticism of the health service.
I find it difficult to get my head around why this should be the case in a country rich with resources of oil and tourism(unless they get their act together).
I am visiting next week and have been so looking forward to it and still maintain a positive attitude. Can't be much worse than 'Gunchester'..!
Syd.

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Post by Roger D. » Sat Apr 08, 2006 2:13 am

Syd - Please refer to this article;

http://www.mytobago.info/forum/viewtopic.php?t=3308

There is no need to worry. Like Europe/North America, excercise caution and good judgement and you'll have a good time.

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Steve Pitts
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Post by Steve Pitts » Sat Apr 08, 2006 9:33 am

Hi Syd

The reports do not differentiate between the seperate islands of Trinidad and Tobago. T&T is a standardised term for the twin nations and although they are seperated by a narrow strip of sea, they are very different in their attitudes and cultures.

The crime rate in Trinidad (like almost everywhere) has been escalating for several years, but Tobago is still, by comparison to many countries, a safe place to visit.

I will be returning for my 8th or 9th (or is my 10th) visit in May and I would not even consider it if I had any concerns about our safety. We are on holiday to relax and enjoy oursleves, not look over our shoulders every second of every day.

I'm sure you'll have a great time if you adhere to the basic principles and precautions that have been posted elswhere on this topic.

Cheers
Steve

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Post by Jane H » Sat Apr 08, 2006 8:46 pm

Hi all

I'd just like to add our comments. We have always felt totally safe and secure in Tobago - given that we take what you might call normal precautions. ie don't flash jewellery or cash. I've felt more threatened in Newcastle or Sunderland than anywhere in Tobago!

Most people you meet are extremely friendly and open, and we certainly don't worry about visiting this wonderful island.

Jane

Syd

Post by Syd » Sat Apr 08, 2006 10:16 pm

Thanks for your responses Roger, Steve and Jane.
I suppose it's a positive thing thing, the authorities taking the OTT stance, as they will hopefully manage to keep a lid on the crime rate.
Four days and counting, can't wait.........
Syd.

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Post by Jane H » Sat Apr 08, 2006 11:17 pm

Hi Syd,

Go and enjoy - we're envious!

Jane

John Fox

Post by John Fox » Mon Apr 17, 2006 2:39 pm

Just returned from 2 weeks in Tobago :cry:

Safety issues - no difference to our first visit in 1995 - never once felt under threat or concerned.
As with every holiday we take anywhere - no flash clothes/jewelry or flashing loadsamoney!

To anyone looking forward to a holiday there - forget all the negative reports - relax, be sensible, and ENJOY

Anthony Townsend

Post by Anthony Townsend » Wed Apr 19, 2006 5:17 pm

As I keep saying, we've just been out for 16 days. I was really concerned before we went out as I expressed. Everyone replied to be sensible and it was safe. We felt very safe. Everyone was polite, friendly and helpful. Follow the advice and you'll have a great time. Everyone asked us how we felt, because they were only to aware of the bad press. They were upset and embarassed that this is the image portrayed. We are now addicted and will be going back as soon as possible.

Anthony.

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Steve Wooler
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Post by Steve Wooler » Thu Apr 20, 2006 7:43 am

A former national tennis player, Stephen George, of Black Rock in Tobago, plus a Trinidadian man, Steve Stephen, were yesterday sentenced to life imprisonment for robbing an English family staying in a villa in Courland in April 2004. During the robbery, a member of the family was raped. The men will serve a minimum of 20 years before release. They will also both "receive strokes" for the offences.

The courts in T&T don't mess around. There's none of our mambie-pambie "send them to a therapist" here.
Steve Wooler
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Post by Roger D. » Thu Apr 20, 2006 11:17 am

Well said Steve. Some of these "liberal" laws are to say the least, questionable.
In Trinidad and Tobago there is a saying "If you drink Governor wine, then stand Governor shot"

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