The US issued a travel warning against Jamaica. Jamaica fought back

In 2023, tourism brought an estimated 4.1 million visitors to Jamaica, who spent about USD$4.3 billion, according to Travel Agent Central. That’s about 15 percent of the country’s overall GDP. So, if travel warnings were to dissuade significant numbers of visitors, it could have a devastating impact on small businesses and tour companies. 

The US State Department operates a four-level travel advisory system, and the risk levels of both countries remain unchanged—The Bahamas is listed as a ‘Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution,’ and Jamaica is listed as ‘Level 3: Reconsider Travel.’ The warning for Jamaica cites ineffective government responses to serious crimes, and advises travelers to avoid public buses and keep a low profile. The warning for The Bahamas, in addition to referencing elevated crime, claims that recreational boating activities may not be adequately regulated for safety. 

Travel warnings can be political, and may cover a much wider area than is actually plagued by crime. Often when violent crime is in headlines, it doesn’t involve tourists.

“[T]here are very distinctly defined areas within Jamaica that the advisory cites as having high risk for crime, so the majority of the island’s tourism product remains unaffected,” the Jamaica Tourist Board told NPR in a statement. “Overall, the crime rate against visitors to Jamaica remains extremely low at 0.01.”

Source link

About The Author

Scroll to Top