State department issues Bahamas travel advisory

The U.S. State Department has issued a travel advisory for the Bahamas due to crime.

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The advisory, issued Monday, warns travelers to "exercise increased caution" if traveling to the tropical archipelago.

“Violent crime, such as burglaries, armed robberies, and sexual assault, is common, even during the day and in tourist areas,” the warning said, noting that most crime happens on New Providence and the Grand Bahama Islands.

Furthermore, the State Department said activities involving commercial recreational watercraft, including water tours, are not consistently regulated.

Most of the 6 million tourists who visit the Bahamas each year are from the United States, according to the State Department.

The State Department advises those who wish to travel to the Bahamas to take the following precautions:

  • Exercise caution in the area known as "Over the Hill" (south of Shirley Street) and the Fish Fry at Arawak Cay in Nassau, especially at night.
  • Do not answer your door at your hotel/residence unless you know who it is.
  • Do not physically resist any robbery attempt.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • Follow the Department of State on Facebook and Twitter.
  • Review the Crime and Safety Report for the Bahamas.
  • U.S. citizens who travel abroad should always have a contingency plan for emergency and medical situations. Review the Traveler's Checklist.

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