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beaney1018 March 4th, 2008 10:34 PM

Hello, I am doing a southern caribbean cruise out of San Juan with AOS. We are going to be stopping at aruba, st. thomas, st. Martin. and Curacao. My fiance and I would like to do some excursions on our own which may involve taxis and such. Is this safe? Are their ports where we should avoid this? Which ports, if any would you be more cautious at?? Thanks!!

Sheffie March 5th, 2008 09:03 AM

We have been to each of these ports and have gone off on our own. We have been to St. Thomas and St. Maarten about 6 times, the other 2 once each. We always go off on our own in St. Thomas and St. Maarten, and did so in the other 2 when we were there. I wouldn't feel unsafe. Just use common sense and do what you feel comfortable with.

***commercial references edited****

Have a great cruise. We have done the Southern routes 3 times, and they are fabulous!

earl March 5th, 2008 05:47 PM

The ports that you have mention, I have been there a few times
Never had a problem with the locals , always nice and friendly

Kuki March 5th, 2008 06:02 PM

The ports you've listed are relatively safe. But you do have to be aware of your surroundings, and people around do, just as you do almost anywhere.

St. Thomas at night is quite different than what it appears to be during a daytime port visit. The point.. there are bad people, but just watch how you handle yourself.

Same can be said about St. Maarten. Once we were there and there was a shooting right downtown. It was between drug dealers. But, we've been several times and explored the island on our own.

gfleo March 6th, 2008 12:41 PM

And Curacao and Aruba too, you won't find any problem either......guaranteed.

beaney1018 March 6th, 2008 01:18 PM

Thanks so much for all your help guys!! Glad to know we will be relatively safe, of course we know to use common sense, just wanted to make sure it was okay to go it alone. Thanks a lot!

cruiserci March 12th, 2008 03:40 PM

Beware of Aruba
I would stay on the ship if I stopped there again.
Last time I was there (May '07 and again in Dec. '08) there was a marked dislike and disdain shown to Americans. This was worse in Dec. than in May. Also, right now there is quite a bit of civil unrest and labor problems (workers on strike, protests in the street). Put that together with the crazy man 20 or so miles away in Venezuela, the lack of interest and ineffectiveness of the police if there is a problem (think Natalee Holloway and Max DeVries), and I can think of MANY places that are safer to visit. PLEASE be very careful or just STAY ON THE SHIP! :!:

Manuel March 12th, 2008 08:21 PM

When you are in Aruba you are safer than in any city in the US.


HIPPIE KILLER March 12th, 2008 09:29 PM

:) yea,thats what natalie hollaway.. .thought,I belive they took her from carlos and charlies,as a matter of fact.if your scarid stay on the boat,alot of people do.I always get off in search of hippies,osamabama's,zombies and such,I am a former Marine and its what we do.

Manuel March 13th, 2008 04:56 PM

Were you injured while in the marines? Hippie Killer seems a bit drastic of a name. Also we cruise on a ship not on a boat.


Paul Motter March 13th, 2008 07:26 PM

I am sorry to say you can't guarantee "safe"

Here is an article from just today about a cruise chip passenger stabbed in St. Lucia in broad daylight.

At least the locals stepped in to help the lad and her friend.

Taxi drivers are generally safe. But you should stay away from isolated "low income" neighborhoods where other people cannot see you. Stick to well-populated tourist areas.

HIPPIE KILLER March 14th, 2008 11:39 PM

It doesnt matter what the name is(how about ocean liner?),no GUAVOS(eggs) no Glory! I fear only GOD,and deffienatly not obama ben li'en,or hugo chavez,etc...but if you recall,a 70 year old gentleman,last year strangled a socialist theif in costa rica. :wink:

Paul Motter March 15th, 2008 12:21 PM

I often wondered about your name HIPPEE KILLER, too. What is that all about (and please try to keep political statements to a minimum). I was a hippy in the 60s, would you want to kill me?

Ron March 15th, 2008 01:15 PM

If you were on a cruise, stopped at a large city where you knew the number of murders since 1976 was over 8,400 people--- the number of murders for last year alone were 181-- and this doesn't count the muggings, robberies, etc nor does it count the ones who were merely wounded and survived--- would you want to get off the ship and go on
a tour, or would you want to stay aboard?? ( I was reading this article in the paper this morning and thinking about what I see, hear and read about the Caribbean and other tourist areas )

If this city happened to be in the Caribbean somewhere it would probably be off the list of stops for all the cruise lines and avoided like the plague by most people.
But this city isn't in the Caribbean or some third world country--- It's our nations Capitol--- Washington, D.C.
Where's the hype, reports on National T.V., the outrage, etc. over the crime in our own Capitol--- But if something happens once in a while regarding somewhere like Aruba, St. Lucia, or elsewhere in the Caribbean, it's news and those places are " dangerous ".
Go figure. We in the U.S. live in a safe country!!!
I've never had a problem anywhere in the Caribbean but use common sense there just as I do at home. But who knows---maybe I've just been lucky or maybe I look so muscular and tough no one wants to screw with me or, possibly my wife looks so mean they won't tackle her !! :wink:

Just another note--- Rio has long been noted for it's crime ( maybe it's changed a little in the last few years but I doubt it ) I spent 10 days there and was not robbed or mugged but I did common sense things like find out where I was going instead of blundering around, didn't wear flashy jewelry, didn't flash rolls of money, treated people with respect, etc.
A guide who lived there had went to New York for a few days and was mugged and robbed the 2nd day there. Again, we here in the U.S. live in a safe country!! Be careful when you leave the U.S.--- it can be a jungle out there !! :wink: :wink:

rinker250 March 15th, 2008 01:20 PM


Originally Posted by Manuel
When you are in Aruba you are safer than in any city in the US.


That's a pretty broad stroke, my freind.

Paul Motter March 15th, 2008 01:44 PM

Rio is indeed dangerous, and when we stopped there for four days we were told "don't use the subways" - some of the worst offenders were children, and "ladies of the evening". Both would pickpocket you.

The children would swarm on you like bees and have their hands in every pocket you have within seconds, then disappear to another car and off at the next stop.

The women would come up and pretend to firt with you by touching where your pockets are looking for your wallet.

In Venezuela, many ships offered shorex to Caraccas. I was on a tour while working for HAL, and the guide (knowing I was staff) told me to stay in the back of the line and watch out for pickpockets. Throughout Europe, especially southern (barcelona, and Italy) there are Gypsies who wilpickpocket you.

The worst for violence is northern Brazil - Santos, Salvador and Recife. There you can get mugged or worse. Never walk alone carrying a backpack, purse or camera bag. I have friends who have been mugged there and even heard of stabbings of cruise passengers there.

I was there in 1983 and was carrying a huge camera bag. I sensed i was being followed by a young man, and promptly picked up my speed and got to the center of town as quickly as i could.

HIPPIE KILLER March 15th, 2008 10:07 PM

sorry paul Its just a joke(oh and dont forget,I defended and agreed with most of your coments about last years cruise when you ran into alot of the subpar treatment),my name hippie killer came from ,when I was watching the ozzy osbourne show and he was wearing a shirt that said hippie killer,its funny,I grew up in the 70's,and we were all long haired red necks,we called ourselves freaks,and partyed like rockstars 8) and back to subject,more people die every year in california,from crime,drunk driving and accidents every year than in iraq!so im saying there are cities in this country more dangerous than most of the caribbean,now jamica they really bug you,they like to try an sell you drugs,then turn you in?! :?:ALSO i AGREE WITH DAN,PEACE THROUGH SUPERIOR FIREPOWER

Trip March 16th, 2008 01:48 PM

Dateline on Friday night, told of a murder in old San Juan, where a wealthy Canadian man, moved to San Juan and began his foray, into the real estate market. He married a local woman. The killing was attibuted to his wife getting someone to kill her soon to be ex husband, but it the connection to her has not been proved yet, although the killer was sentenced to life.

During the program, they mentioned that Puerta Rico, has THREE times the murder rate than NYC! I mentioned in chat, that I had always felt safe there, and now, would just be "more" alert, there, and in other ports, since I am in a vacation mode, and we know the locals are just living their regular daily lives.

Years ago, the U.S. Navy, when docked in St Thomas, advised the sailors not to go into port. I also know a woman who's Mom, owned a condo there, who was shot, along with others while going to a restaurant.

We all need to remember to just be alert at all times,and if a red flag gooes off in your mind, act on it. Even in Paradise, there are things we need to look out for.

kd March 17th, 2008 08:32 PM


Originally Posted by Manuel
When you are in Aruba you are safer than in any city in the US.


I agree. Aruba is a beautiful and safe port. Not intending to fault Miss Holloway but its not smart to go get drunk in a bar and then get in a vehicle with 3 local strangers.......ANYWHERE in the world. I would have to say that Aruba and Curacao felt safer than any other Carribbean Island we've been on, and we've been to most of them at least once. By all means get off the ship and have a great time. I wouldn't suggest wandering off the beaten path alone in any port either, especially at night. It always astounds me when I see women disembarking at a port of a poor country (which most of the ports are) wearing gobs of gold, jewellery and gems. Why make yourself a target. I even leave my diamond set in the safe and just wear my wedding band. We have travelled in many countries and it always is wise to be aware of your surroundings and use common sense.

kd March 17th, 2008 08:49 PM


Originally Posted by Paul Motter
I am sorry to say you can't guarantee "safe"

Here is an article from just today about a cruise chip passenger stabbed in St. Lucia in broad daylight.

At least the locals stepped in to help the lad and her friend.

Taxi drivers are generally safe. But you should stay away from isolated "low income" neighborhoods where other people cannot see you. Stick to well-populated tourist areas.

Very unfortunate but the same thing could have happened in downtown Toronto. Once again, be aware of your surroundings and listen to the little warning voices in your head! St Lucia is a gorgeous island and I would hate for anyone to stay on the ship rther than exprience the island.

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