USAtoday, Challenges of Tourism in the Dominican Republic
  • Overview

    The Caribbean islands have been the most popular cruise destination for nine years straight, offering breathtaking scenery, rich culture and relatively inexpensive shore excursions. Even though places like Puerto Rico and St. Thomas are commonwealths of the United States, you'll face unique risks and challenges of tourism in the Caribbean.
  • Danger from Insects

    While there are virtually no dangerous insects on the rain forest island of Dominica, every island is not so lucky. The Dominican Republic and Haiti carry a risk of mosquito-borne malaria, and travelers should take oral anti-malaria medication and use insect repellent for these destinations. The Dominican Republic and Haiti's gnats, lice, sand flies and mosquitoes carry diseases like leishmaniasis -- the so-called "flesh-eating disease" -- as well as filariasis, oropouche virus and typhus. Fasciola hepatica is endemic in Cuba, while yellow fever has been seen in Trinidad and Tobago. Outbreaks of denge fever have been reported in most tourist-frequented Caribbean islands. Get vaccinated before you go.
  • Food- and Water-Borne Illness

    Traveler's diarrhea is a very common occurrence anywhere in the Caribbean Islands, since American travelers are not used to the type of protozoa or bacteria found in the food and water. Drink only bottled water and beverages without ice cubes. Get vaccinated for typhoid fever if you'll be traveling to small villages or rural outposts and for hepatitis A if you'll be going to Central America, where the disease is spread by person to person contact, contaminated water, contaminated produce and shellfish harvesting.
  • Water and Animal Infection

    The parasitic Schistosomiasis, or blood fluke, has been known to embed itself in tourists swimming in the fresh waters of Antigua, Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, Martinique, Montserrat, Guadeloupe and Saint Lucia. Unfortunately, the only way to prevent contact is to avoid swimming in fresh water pools on these islands. There is also a risk of contracting rabies from bats or wild dogs in Puerto Rico, Trinidad and Tobago, Haiti, Granada, Cuba and Dominican Republic. As common sense would dictate, avoid petting stray dogs roaming these islands.
  • Swimming Dangers

    The water can be a murky situation in the Caribbean Islands. While you'll encounter idyllic pools amid rain forest scenery where others might be swimming, err on the side of caution. Stick to the main tourist beaches and read all warnings before getting into the water. The ocean contains many seemingly innocuous creatures that contain poisonous venom. Beware of spiny white or black sea urchins, corals, jellyfish, sea lice, lionfish and cone shells containing predators with razor-sharp teeth. There are not many poisonous snakes in the Caribbean, but you might come across scorpions.
  • Crime

    Crime is still relatively rare in the Caribbean Islands, but "The New York Times" warns that you shouldn't let your guard down. The State Department's consular information sheets suggest that crime is on the rise in places like Saint Lucia, Belize and Trinidad and Tobago. Jamaica and the Dominican Republic have historically reported the most crime, with pickpocketing and mugging the most common. In Jamaica, two American tourists reported sexual assaults at resorts in 2009. Crime happens everywhere, but there is an added risk in the Caribbean for the simple fact that the local law enforcement doesn't have the level of resources you'll find in the United States. Accidents could take years to resolve and tales of police corruption are common.
  • Precautions

    There are a number of steps you can take to better protect yourself in the Caribbean: Eat cooked foods and fruits that needs peeling. Avoid shellfish, drink bottled beverages and steer clear of local street vendors. Do not leave drinks unattended. Stay away from monkeys, cats and dogs and wash your hands often. Avoid going barefoot. Consider tetanus boosters as well as vaccines for hepatitis A, yellow fever, typhoid and rabies. Bring insect repellent, long sleeves and antidiarrheal medication. Bring photocopies of your passport, birth certificate and license in case you are a victim of pickpockets. Keep the phone number of your credit cards to report a stolen card. Avoid leaving valuables in parked cars or on beaches. Limit the amount of cash or credit you carry. Have the number for the local embassy or consulate handy. Never assume you're safe because you're on a tour sponsored by your hotel or cruise line

source: USAtoday

Go back | Date: 26 Jul 2010
Proud to be the most
factual DR news site!
We keep the stories
& investigations alive
that cozenage groups
want to hide or forget
Quick Search – All Articles
Video about DR's Sugar Barons
The horrible conditions of Haitian sugar cane workers in the Dominican Republic

The truth about Leonel
Must Watch This Video About President Leonel's DRUG CONNECTIONS!!

Top Stories
Most Read Stories
"This site may contain copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of criminal justice, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research or any other non-commercial purposes."
Please support our work
1000 of hours are being
spend yearly on collecting
articles, investigations and
answering emails.