That travel advisory issued by the Canadian government warning its citizens to exercise a high degree of caution when traveling to the Bahamas due to the high rate of crime, not sitting well with jet ski operators and taxi drivers, who were among those cited in the travel ban. The advisory also cited an increase in muggings, armed robberies and sexual assaults targeting tourists in Nassau and Freeport. and warned Canadians to be wary when embarking on jet ski rides with licensed or unlicensed operators, among other things. Veteran jet ski operator and owner of J. Action Watersports, Renwick Rolle, feel they are being unfairly singled out, noting that the industry is now strictly regulated.
Rolle went on to say ” I can hear you telling people not to use unlicensed operators, but telling tourists not to ride with people who are licensed…I’m a licensed operator, all over the Christmas we had a booming season…everyone comes on this beach now has to come through-out the port authority, everyone who operates jet ski has to have an operators card from the port authority also.
Port Officer, Princess Daisy Russell stressed that a system is in place at Goodman’s Bay to weed out any rogue operators. Russell continues ” the port officers do not allow anyone to come here and ride as they please because there is a rotation system and only licensed jet ski operators are allowed to operate on this beach, nobody else.
The Canadian Travel Advisory comes some three weeks after the U.S Government issued a similar travel ban, warning Americans to stay away from the Fish Fry at Arawak Cay due to crime.
Meanwhile, the Canadian travel advisory warned citizens that taxis do not use meters and advised them to negotiate the price before getting in. It also warned Canadians to only use licensed taxis and to take particular care late at night.
Taxi Driver, Andre Davis says the travel advisories are bad for business saying “the advisories they hurt us as drivers. The tourists when they come, you have an id you say good morning they say no thank you and they’re afraid to talk to you. It’s like you want to do a taxi service or a city tour, the answer is no thank you, no thank you. Down here, ain no crime is be down here, but that’s what they say to make it feel like it’s a bad place to come”.