The term Is Belize Safe is searched almost 2,000 times on a monthly basis, proving that travelers to Belize take their safety very seriously. With a record breaking year in 2015, Belize hosted over 1.3 million visitors, of which 341,125 were overnight visitors.
With growing popularity as a Caribbean and Central American travel destination, it makes sense that safety searches are this high for such a small country. Before continuing this article and if you’re also wondering the location of Belize, please read our previous article titled “Where is Belize?”
If your question is Is Belize Safe ? then read on…
To answer the popular search query and your anxious curiosity; YES, Belize is a relatively safe country in our part of the world. This is the reason we accept travel advisories and warnings with grace; we know that the reason why media houses and news outlets would sensationalize some violent crimes is because it rarely happens, especially to travelers, and especially outside of the vicinity of Belize City.
The success of Belize’s tourism industry has been dependent on its friendly people, fascinating multicultural society, beautiful beaches, stunning barrier reef and great blue hole, its numerous sacred ceremonial caves and Mayan temples, among other unique attractions.
Safety precautions & facts checklist that can keep you well & happy during your Belize vacation
- When traveling in Belize city or other urban areas, use the same level of precautions you would use in any major city. Don’t walk alone in secluded areas, don’t flash cash, high value electronics, and don’t get excessively drunk. Belize City in itself has some very sketchy areas that unfortunately have fallen hostage to gang activity. There are areas however, that are relatively safe, such as the Belize Fort George Tourism Village, which has good Belize tourism police presence
- If you fall prey to an armed robbery, comply with the robber’s instructions and hand over any material item you may have. Material items can be replaced, you cannot, correct?!
- Used credit/debit cards over cash. Most businesses in Belize accept the more popular ones such as VISA and MASTERCARD, however American Express and others are widely accepted as well. This avoids any instance of petty theft
- If you’re visiting beach destinations such as Placencia, Ambergris Caye, or Caye Caulker, don’t leave your valuables unattended on the beach while you swim or walk along the sand. Make sure to wear plenty sunscreen and drinks lots of water, the sun can dehydrate you and cause major sunburn!
- If renting a car, park your car in well-lit areas of your travel destination and never leave valuables in the car that may lure a passerby
- If your main mode of transportation will be taxis, try to use a taxi from a local coop that displays a sticker stating which coop they belong to, and make sure to take note of license plates (this can help in case you forgot belongings in them, too). Check out our article on Transportation in Belize Guide; Do’s and Dont’s for transportation tips. PS: Taxis carry green license plates
- Traffic can be unpredictable, so use caution when traveling on foot. Look both ways and make sure your path is clear, pedestrians don’t have the right away unless there is a clear sign that says so
- Take advantage of daylight; it’s easier to see where you are going during the day; don’t push your luck into the night
- Ask for help; if you feel someone is stalking you or following you around, report it to the relevant authorities, your hotel manager, and make sure to have a clear description of the said person. This can help if you ever need to do an identity parade at a local police station
- Make copies of important info and documents including drivers license, passport, and credit card information
- Always let someone know your travel plans and itinerary, this way, if something happens, at-least one person would know where you are (or should be)
- Be confident; by this we don’t mean that you should replicate a Belize local, but at-least appear as if you’ve been living around and you know where to go and what you want. If for some reason you become lost, slip into a cafe or restaurant and consult with a local or check your map
Respect Belize’s country laws
- It is illegal to drink publicly with pint beer bottles. Defer to a plastic cup or canned beer instead
- Buying, consuming, or transporting drugs is illegal and is punishable by law; marijuana, cocaine, meth, crack, and a couple others
- The hiring of escorts and sexual services is illegal, do so at your own risk
- Traveling with an undisclosed amount of cash; anything over $10,000bzd has to be declared at customs and immigration
Belize health safety
- Tap water is relatively clean, however we recommend against it and choose purified water as the viable option. Sometimes tap water can be dirty due to flooded rivers or drainage work in your area, or sometimes it can contain high levels of chlorine that is equally unsatisfactory
- The CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention) recommend getting Hepatitis A and Typhoid vaccines, both to protect against contamination from water or food.
- You should avoid mosquito bites to prevent malaria, although the risk of acquiring it is low. If you gather from your travel itinerary that you will be staying in an area that is mosquito-ridden then by all means consult with your doctor for possible vaccination before traveling
- If you are a medical student or will be handling animals, you may want to check your doctor for rabies vaccine, although it is not common, it’s always better to prevent than resent, right?! 🙂
Belize emergency numbers:
- Police hotline: 911
- BERT (Belize Emergency Response Team – certified ambulance and tourist evacuation service): 90 or 223-3292
If you’re looking for a safe, enjoyable and affordable all-inclusive Belize Vacation package, then we highly recommend The Lodge at Chaa Creek, pioneer in adventure travel to Belize since 1981. Use discount code #TRAVELBLOG18 to receive an automatic 10% OFF a Belize vacation package!
If you’re still questioning to yourself “Is Belize Safe?” after reading this guide, reach out to us at [email protected] and we will be happy to clear any questions or doubts you may have. If you believe we missed an important point in our Belize Safety guide, please comment below and let us know what is it that we missed, thank you! 🙂