BY: Viktor Vincej
Enjoying a vacation in a Caribbean paradise is as easy as learning the ABCs. The famous “ABC” islands, which are A for Aruba, B for Bonaire, and C for Curacao. Of the three ABC islands, Curacao is the largest, and some say it is the most beautiful. It is a highly-desirable vacation destination because it is very safe.
Although only about 160,000 people live on the island of Curacao, which is off the coast of Venezuela, more than 1.2 million visitors come to the island each year.
U.S. State Department Curacao’s country safety ranking is Level 1
The country report on Curacao published by the U.S. State Department gives the island a category one ranking for the low crime. This category one is the best safety ranking possible.
LATEST UPDATES / NEWS from Curaçao:
May 18 – Curaçao tourism continues to break records in 2023
The number of overnight visitors to Curaçao increased by 13% to 45,914 in March 2023, according to the Curaçao Tourist Board. North and South American visitors contributed to the increase, countering a fall in European travelers. Europe remained the largest source market, accounting for 43% of arrivals, but without growth. North America was second with 34% of arrivals, followed by South America with 14%.
With year-over-year increases of 20% in February and 35% in January, Curaçao is on track to meet its goal of reaching a record 525,000 overnight visitors in 2023. The island’s early reopening strategy, marketing initiatives and new resort development have been credited for the island’s comeback in 2023.
Some potential visitors might have concerns about Curacao being so close to Venezuela. It is clear to all that Venezuela is extremely dangerous. Nevertheless, Venezuela has no negative impact on Curacao.
Curacao is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. It has a parliamentary democratic government. It is autonomous and still supported by the Netherlands. The Dutch navy maintains a presence there to protect the island.
Venezuela is about 40 miles (65 km) to the south; however, the Curacao system of government is completely different. The residents of Curacao speak Dutch and English as official languages. The local currency is the Netherlands Antilles Guilder (ANG).
Drug trafficking is NOT a local problem
The law enforcement of the Netherlands is investigating drug trafficking on cargo ships that arrive from Central and South America at Rotterdam port in Europe. Some of this activity links to Caribbean islands, like Curacao and others.
This drug trafficking is high-level drug smuggling that does not impact the local island community that much or directly affect tourists visiting Curacao.
Watch out for petty crimes
Even though the crime risk level in Curacoa is very low, tourists should always exercise precautions to avoid being a victim of petty crime. There may be pickpockets working in areas that are crowded with tourists. Things left in a hotel room or a rental car might be stolen.
Best practices to follow to avoid being a crime victim while on vacation
Tourists should take precautions to avoid becoming the victim of a crime while on vacation.
Here are the top ten safety tips for tourists:
- While on vacation, tourists should always be aware of their surroundings.
- Tourists should be especially careful in unfamiliar neighborhoods.
- Always keep any valuable belongings in sight.
- Avoid carrying large amounts of cash. Instead, use credit cards or traveler’s checks.
- Tourists should lock their hotel rooms when they are not inside. If the room has a balcony, lock the access door to the balcony when leaving the room.
- Lock a rental car if you leave it parked. Do not leave valuable items in plain sight in a locked rental car, as this may cause a thief to break the window. Don’t trust that things locked in the rental car trunk will be safe, as thieves know this “hiding” place and may smash a window to enter the vehicle to pop open the trunk.
- Tourists should keep their luggage in sight in public places and not leave it unattended.
- Tourists should be sure to inform someone of their travel plans. They should also keep a copy of their passport and other important documents in a secure location.
- Tourists should use common sense and trust their instincts. If something feels wrong, it is best to avoid it.
- Tourists should also use established transportation, such as taxis or public transportation, and avoid relying on strangers for directions or assistance.
Curacao is extremely safe, and over one million tourists have a terrific time visiting the island each year. By following these best practices, tourists can greatly reduce the chances of becoming the victim of a crime while on vacation.