Jamaica : Safety by CityJamaica - safety as a country
Spanish Town is a city in the southeast of Jamaica about 15 kilometers west of the capital Kingston.
Spanish Town has become the industrial suburb of Kingston with a wide range of medium-sized businesses.
The city center has narrow, winding streets, is hot, dirty, unfriendly, and had a high crime rate, especially in the 1970s and 80s.
Only in recent years have three large shopping centers been built on the main thoroughfare.
Only the small area of the city center with historic buildings is essential for tourists.
Another proof of the unattractive place is the lack of any hotels.
Warnings & Dangers in Spanish Town
OVERALL RISK : MEDIUM
Spanish Town does not present much tourist attraction. If you are in this city - watch your belongings, do not leave them unattended, always park your car in a guarded parking lot and lock it. Do not get drunk in bars and avoid drug dealers.
TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : MEDIUM
Public transport is not particularly safe. Tourists are advised to use a taxi or private car. Use only a licensed taxi service and discuss the price of the trip in advance or make sure that the driver has turned on the taximeter.
PICKPOCKETS RISK : MEDIUM
Most likely, you are unlikely to meet pickpockets, but if you do not watch your things and pockets, you can quickly become a victim of a robbery. Be mindful of your surroundings. Do not communicate with strangers, and especially watch out for those who ask you or offer help.
NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : HIGH
Jamaica is subject to many natural hazards. The island is located in the hurricane belt and has survived many hurricanes. Jamaica also has a history of seismic activity. Investigate reliable sources for these risks before you travel here.
MUGGING RISK : MEDIUM
Armed robberies are rare here. Most often, they occur during the showdown of drug dealers. In order not to become an accidental victim of these battles, avoid walking in the Spanish Town at night and do not get involved in drunken fights.
TERRORISM RISK : LOW
Although there is no recent history of terrorism in Jamaica, the possibility of attacks cannot be ruled out. Explore the political situation on the island before your trip. It is best to avoid mass crowds, political, and other rallies.
SCAMS RISK : LOW
More often than not, if you are recognized as a tourist, locals may try to deceive you by selling trinkets at an inflated price, overstate the cost of a taxi ride or sell you non-existent tours and excursions. Be on the lookout.
WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : MEDIUM
Women traveling alone can be safe here if they follow increased measures of care: do not walk around the city late at night, do not sit in bars, do not attract the unwanted attention of local men with their clothes or behavior. At night it is better to use a taxi to get around.
So... How Safe Is Spanish Town Really?
Spanish Town cannot boast of tourist attraction.
You are unlikely to find a decent hotel where you can stay here.
At the same time, the city is not particularly safe for walking and nighttime pastimes.
In Spanish Town, the collective crimes of an industrial town are common – robbery, theft of things, hacking, and car theft.
Tourists are rare here and attract the attention of residents.
Therefore, most likely, they will try to offer you any help in return for a monetary reward.
Keep track of your belongings and pockets as there are enough pickpockets here.
Do not leave personal items unattended. Carry a copy of your passport and necessary documents with you, leave the originals in a safe place.
Be on the lookout for your surroundings; they can easily offer you to buy drugs.
Remember that hard drugs are illegal in Jamaica.
Due to the high temperature, it is worth taking care of the drinking regime and applying sunscreen.
Locals see tourists in the crowd and can cling to you, offering help for money.
A solid “No” will force them to retreat.
Watch your drink at the bar so that you don’t get something poured into a glass for robbery.
How Does Spanish Town Compare?
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- Visas - Visitors to Jamaica must obtain a visa from one of the Jamaican diplomatic missions unless they come from one of the 116 countries designated as visa-exempt countries or countries whose citizens may obtain a visa on arrival. Most Commonwealth Citizens can visit Jamaica for up to 180 days visa-free. A valid passport is a must.
- Currency - The Jamaican Dollar is the currency of Jamaica. The currency code for Dollars is JMD, and the currency symbol is J$. It is divided into 100 cents.
- Weather - The months May, June, August, September, and October have a high chance of precipitation. The best time to visit Spanish Town for dry periods is in January, February, and March.
- Airports - Norman Manley International Airport is an international airport serving Kingston, Jamaica and is located south of the island 44 km away from the center of Spanish Town. It is the second busiest airport in the country.
- Travel Insurance - The travel insurance policy is a must when visiting a foreign country. Make sure you got it before starting your journey, the customs officer may ask for it.
Spanish Town Weather Averages (Temperatures)
Average High/Low Temperature
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4 Reviews on Spanish Town
Not much to see in Spanish Town really, I only spent a day there and didn’t want to stay any longer than that. I am not sure if it would be worth the time spending a night in a hotel there. Perhaps in the future they could improve the security and make the area more tourist friendly then things could brighten up for that area. But for now, it isn’t one of the safe locations and there are better spots to visit in Jamaica.
Not a very pleasant experience
Honestly, I don’t know if this place deserves a 68 on the Safety Index. From my personal experience (and of course, I could be way off on this) I would say this place is more of a 50. I was here for 5 days and I saw pickpockets in drones. I saw someone’s phone being stolen and there was nothing I could do to help. It happened very fast and I’m certain the phone can never be recovered.
I was verbally aggressive while going to a store that was near my hotel. I was alone. When I was with my husband nothing bad happened. This means that you shouldn’t come here as a woman on your own. I would advise against it. It’s best to come in groups, with men and women and avoid going out at night as much as possible. After dark things get even scarier. There are thieves and dubious looking men all over the place.
I think that it will take some time before this place is friendlier to tourists. Until then I would not recommend anyone have a vacation here. It’s just too dangerous and instead of relaxing you will always have to make sure no one is trying to steal from you or attack you in any way. I came back home more tired than I was when I arrived in Spanish Town.
Again, I may well be way off on my assessment of the place and other people might have had a much better experience here but for me, I won’t be coming back anytime soon. It was just too straining on my nerves.
Some of the things you can do while here are to visit: Rodney Memorial, Emancipation Square, St Jago de la Vega Cathedral, National Heroes Park, Blue and John Crow Mountains National Park, Spanish Town Zone, Horizon Park.
Nowhere is perfect
I found Spanish Town to be okay. Did not get to stay as long as I’d like, but the locals seemed friendly enough and as an English person trying to find my way around was very comfortable asking for directions on how to get around and back to Tower Isle.
Never saw any pickpocket gangs, druggies, cocaine or heroine dealers, people begging money, scammers, kids in gangs roaming the streets, gang crime, drunk people, people living on the streets, violence, knife attacks, car crime and thefts, motorcyle thefts, motorcycle jacking (stealing your bike while you’re riding it), people being attacked and verbally abused because you are not a white person, children and women being being abducted in broad daylight and police officers raping and murdering women (only now being highlighted as its so blatant and cannot be hidden) like what I see and is seen and heard of nearly every day in London and surrounding English counties. Spanish Town and Jamaican gun crime might be higher but crime overall very low and very much safer when compared to where I am in England. Nearly all area of England are like this, feel safe at your own risk….Spanish Town is okay…for me anyway.
Crime is everywhere
Only in Heaven is SAFE!!!!!! Crime and violence is everywhere i was in jamaica 3 wks ago i go about my normal business ain’t no issues check America crime rate, check crime rate in England just to name a few and compare them to Jamaica a third world country with limited resources