Be sensible and then enjoy !

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PWNorris

Be sensible and then enjoy !

Post by PWNorris » Tue Apr 18, 2006 6:55 pm

Much has been written, here and elsewhere about crime on Tobago and its possible effect on personal safety. Having just returned from tobago after a 2-week holiday there - our first visit to the island - I thought I'd add my own perspective to this discussion. Firstly I should just say that although we are experienced travellers we are perhaps somewhat cautious and not of the risk taking type. Given that, we were a little concerned before visiting the island but our actual experience showed we need not have worried. We traveled around in our hire car a great deal and encountered nothing but warm, friendly and helpful people - justly proud of their island. Now that does not mean there are no problems, of course there are, but they seem to be magnified out of proportion. I sense there may be 2 reasons for that :

Most news reports etc tend to refer to Tinidad and Tobago as a single entity. Hence what happens on what island tends to be interpreted as true for the other. As far as I could ascertain, the crime situation on Trinidad is much worse (indeed, there was talk in the local paper about a possible state of emergency there !) and all news stories, when read carefully, talked about incidents actually happening on Trinidad. Not on Tobago.

The other reason is that the inhabitants of Tobago have long been used to an extremely low of crime. Sadly, it seems that has changed a little in recent years and now there is some - but even though this is a very low level compared to what we are used to in Europe etc. it seems major to the locals. In other words, if you are used to living somewhere where there was effectively no crime, then any crime at all, no matter how small or rare, seems like a very big deal indeed.

The bottom line is that we found Tobago to be a very safe place indeed. Of course we followed all the usual sensible precautions so as not to tempt trouble but in my opinion if you do that then you really need not be unduly concerned.

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