When a port's dangerous, who's responsible for letting you know?

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Poll: Who's responsible for warning passengers of crime risks? (Choose all that apply.)
Poll Results
Who's responsible for warning passengers of crime risks? (Choose all that apply.)

The cruise lines
135
44.12%

Planning resources, like Cruise Critic, or travel agents
71
23.20%

Travelers should do their own research
183
59.80%

Nobody; risk exists both away and at home
63
20.59%

Something else (which I'll post)
5
1.63%

Multiple Choice Poll.

Voters: 306.  You may not vote on this poll.

#1
NJ
864 Posts
Joined May 2004
Since Monday's tragic shooting death of a young Carnival Victory passenger on an independent tour of St. Thomas, various debates have cropped up on Cruise Critic. One thing folks want to know is who's responsible for warning passengers when a ship visits a port of call where crime is a known issue?

Is it the cruise line's job? Does that duty fall to planning guides and resources, like Cruise Critic? Should travelers take it upon themselves to decide to which ports or places they should and should not go? Or is cruise travel in the Caribbean a case of caveat emptor: Let the cruiser beware?

Vote in our poll and join the discussion below.
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MelissaP
Director, Product Development
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#3
South Carolina
96 Posts
Joined Jul 2010
This question has many levels to it. What I consider to be safe is not the same as for another.
My first thought is YOU are responsible for YOU. With the internet, and technology where it is today - you can research anything including crime, and safety of anywhere. Researching for an hour before you go is worth it.
However I do believe that if they dont already it is also part of the cruiseline that you travel on to ensure that the locations they travel to are 'safe' for their passengers as well as their crew.
#4
1,813 Posts
Joined Feb 2007
What research is needed? Unless you live in a cocoon you should realize that the possibility of personal risk exists everywhere. There isn't a day that goes by that you can't pick a paper in any US city and read about shootings, murders, rapes, etc. To think it is different in any foreign country or city is actually naive. No one should need to be told by someone else that dangers may exist-that is simply common sense.
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#5
6,490 Posts
Joined May 2009
Originally posted by [email protected]
Since Monday's tragic shooting death of a young Carnival Victory passenger on an independent tour of St. Thomas, various debates have cropped up on Cruise Critic. One thing folks want to know is who's responsible for warning passengers when a ship visits a port of call where crime is a known issue?

Is it the cruise line's job? Does that duty fall to planning guides and resources, like Cruise Critic? Should travelers take it upon themselves to decide to which ports or places they should and should not go? Or is cruise travel in the Caribbean a case of caveat emptor: Let the cruiser beware?

Vote in our poll and join the discussion below.
There isn't a place in the world that crime doesn't exist today. So it's pretty difficult to avoid not traveling to a crime free zone.
Cruise lines will sometime alter their routes if there's a major concern . They will also cancel tours if they think safety is concern. Other than that it's the travelers responsibility .
#7
Low Country, SC
4,857 Posts
Joined Dec 2005
The cruise lines already warn you that independent tour guides are not endorsed or monitorred by the cruise line, it is the responsibility of the person booking the excursion to determine if the provider is "safe".
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#8
The Sunny South
1,177 Posts
Joined Apr 2009
When someone finds a travel destination with no risk involved, please email me and let me know. And no, it is not anyone's obligation to furnish us a report on crime. Everyone is, or should be, responsible for themselves. Why is it that people want to make others responsible for their own wellbeing? Have we become perpetual children???
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#9
1,727 Posts
Joined Jul 2004
Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, New York, Port Liberty, Galveston, New Orleans, Los Angeles...

Are any of these cruise embarkation ports any less dangerous than any ports of call?

Going to and departing from your cruise ship's North American port is probably the most dangerous part of your cruise.
I don't see that "warnings" will ever be issued any about traveling to these cities.

Well, on second thought, maybe L.A.

What has playing The Blame Game ever accomplished?



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#10
Washington State
21,820 Posts
Joined Dec 2005
The Department of State that issues travel warnings (http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_p.../cis_1765.html) does not list St. Thomas. Go figure. Basically, when you walk out of your front door, the responsibility for safety lies with you. Fair?. . . . . . No. Reality?. . . . . Yes!
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#11
Richardson, TX
71,088 Posts
Joined Dec 2006
I happen to love Coki Beach and upset that Coki Beach is being branded as a place not to go.
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#12
Canada
1,431 Posts
Joined Dec 2004
I have actually seen the cruise lines provide 'warnings' in the shore guide they provide to all pax. Things such as 'you may be offered drugs in port, they are not legal there or our onboard the ship' and warnings about minor crimes such as pickpocketing etc.

While I don't feel cruise lines need or should have to provide CNN type warnings about every port (since I do agree that safety is a personal responsibility and no where is completely safe anymore), there is perhaps some brief reminders they can provide to passengers. It's easy to forget about the usual precautions when you are living in your vacation bubble.
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#13
4,299 Posts
Joined Jan 2009
Responsible legally, or morally?

I suspect if cruise lines and agencies were legally responsible, we'd be listening to all kinds of disclaimers and signing waivers.

Morally? You gotta look out for #1, always. Never trust strangers to be conscientious.

That said, there IS something very wrong if a line or agency KNOWS of a current problem, but holds their tongue.
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#14
Phoenix, AZ
152 Posts
Joined Apr 2007
I don't feel safe anywhere in the Caribbean. I still visit but opt to stay on the ship in many of the ports. Jamaica is one that I always remain onboard.
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#15
CT
653 Posts
Joined Dec 2006
The thing is just be aware of your surroundings and use common sense in the usual travel precautions.
One customer(when I had my store) told me this horror story of being pick pocketed in St.Petersburg, Russia. His passport got pick pocketed along with his wallet. Lucky he had a photocopy of his picture page and # to the U.S. Embassy, helped him out with getting a new one. So this is why always keep your passport,and a photocopy on your cell phone(picture page) in case its stolen, also phone number and address of US Embassy or Consulate in that particular country just in case. This may be a rare situation but it could happen. I don't feel safe crossing the street at times- (drivers who think they can text and talk on their cells and drive- pay attention the road!!)now thats dangerous.
Happy and safe traveling
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#16
Melbn, 'Straya
1,985 Posts
Joined Aug 2009
A few minutes' basic research and reading (including CC!) should give people at least an awareness of any potential risks (one man's "risk" is another's "adventure") so I think we need to take some personal responsibility on this one. The information IS out there and easy to find and assess if we bother to look but unfortunately a lot of people are either too lazy or believe that when something bad happens it's always someone else's fault (ka-ching! "who do I sue?"). Violent crime is a problem everywhere, not least the US, so use some common sense.
#17
106,281 Posts
Joined Jul 2001
Everyone should research their ports -- know what to expect -- even the unexpected.

We did a ship's tour to Coki Beach -- in a van -- and went through the same area -- it could have happened to us. So it doesn't make any difference whether you tour independently or through the ship -- these things can happen.

There have cases all over the US where people have been killed innocently by gang wars that suddently break out.
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#18
11,308 Posts
Joined Mar 2007
I voted other. I think that anyone with information regarding personal safety that would influence their own decision regarding visiting a destination should share the information if the opportunity presents itself. That would include the Cruiseline, TA, Cruisecritic and others.
#19
Philly suburbs
169 Posts
Joined Jan 2005
First and foremost, adults are responsible for themselves. That being said, if I have chosen to use a travel agent to plan a vacation, that TA is absolutely bound to give me all the information I need to keep myself safe in a place I've never been before. I believe this both as a consumer and a TA.
#20
NC
40 Posts
Joined May 2009
For a Ships Passanger to get truthful and timely information on the internet, the posted information must be accurate. That can be hard to verify. falsehoods and hiding the facts are rampant in on the web. Even past stories from local news sourses can be unhelpful as well as temporary. With a teen daughter I try to do my port homework and find it dificult to pin down the best safety options. Thats to bad, because we end up with "when in doubt, don't". As a result, we limit ourselves. In Nassau this August, were just staying on the ship and in St. Thomas were taking a ship excurstion To B.V.I.
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Snorkelkat