Don't book that trip just yet! ⚠️
Now that Canada has changed its border measures, international travel has become a bit less stressful. While you might be inclined to book a trip to that bucket list destination of yours, you shouldn't buy that plane ticket just yet.
The Government of Canada has issued travel advisories for a number of international countries for reasons other than COVID-19. As of March 9, 2022, the government is urging Canadians to "avoid all travel" to both Russia and Ukraine due to the ongoing conflict.
Additionally, there are many other destinations including Mexico, France, Thailand, and the United Kingdom to name a few, that Canadians should avoid due to crime levels, threats of terrorism, and civil unrest.
While the government has issued travel advisories, the notices are recommendations and not mandatory rules for travellers to follow. So, if you're planning on heading on a trip, here are some countries you should exercise a level of caution for.
Canadian travellers frequent the United Kingdom quite often, considering it's a commonwealth country. However, the government wants Canadian travellers to "exercise a high degree of caution in the United Kingdom due to the threat of terrorism."
The advisory was last updated on February 28, 2022, and indicates that previous attacks and threats of terrorism have resulted in casualties in the UK, which includes random violent attacks in public areas, vehicle attacks, and explosions. Petty crime, spiked food and drinks, and fraud are also common in the UK and travellers should be aware of their surroundings, and personal items at all times.
The government of Canada has issued a travel advisory to Canadian travellers who choose to visit Thailand to "exercise a high degree of caution in Thailand due to ongoing political tensions and sporadic demonstrations in Bangkok and elsewhere in the country."
Canadian tourists are also urged to "avoid all travel" to the southern provinces of Narathiwat, Pattani, Songkhla, and Yala. When it comes to safety and security, travellers should be aware of the political tensions in Thailand. Additionally, the government is warning Canadian travellers of the possibility of crimes such as purse snatching, pickpocketing, theft, fraud, and rental scams.
As for women's safety, the government has said that "sexual assaults against foreign women have occurred" and to be particularly careful and "vigilant during full moon parties, Songkran, and other events in popular tourist locations."
The government of Canada has issued a warning last updated on March 4, 2022, for Canadian travellers to "exercise a high degree of caution in Colombia due to high levels of crime."
Travel should be avoided at various border areas, and non-essential travel should be avoided at a number of regional areas including Antioquia, Guainía, Guaviare, Putumayo, and Nariño, to name a few.
As for safety and security risks, the government has stated that Canadian tourists should be aware of risks involving petty and violent crime, kidnapping, express kidnappings, illegal armed groups, and threats of terrorism. "There is a threat of domestic terrorism. Terrorist groups are active in some parts of the country. Attacks occur periodically," the government said.
Despite being home to one of the world's wonders, travelling to Egypt can result in safety and security risks as stated by the Canadian government. Tourists who choose to visit the Middle Eastern country should "exercise a high degree of caution in Egypt due to the unpredictable security situation and the threat of terrorism."
Canadian travellers are also advised to "avoid all travel" in the Sinai Peninsula, the Western desert and the Libyan border area. The government also wants travellers of civil unrest, crime, both violent and petty, road safety, and the risk of unexploded land mines.
Women should also be careful when travelling, as the government states that "women, particularly foreigners, are frequently subject to unpleasant male attention, sexual harassment and verbal abuse."
Mexico is yet another popular vacation destination, however, the government of Canada has urged travellers to "exercise a high degree of caution in Mexico due to high levels of criminal activity and kidnapping."
There are also many regional travel advisories set in place for various locations due to "violence and organized crime", including Chihuahua, Colima, Sinaloa, Tamaulipas, and Guanajuato, to name a few.
Tourists should be aware of the safety and security risks in Mexico including express kidnappings, organized crime, petty theft, violent theft, home break-ins, assault, and spiked food and drinks. As for women's safety, the government indicated that "women travelling alone may be subject to some forms of harassment and verbal abuse."
While the choice to travel to Costa Rica remains possible, Canadians are expected to be responsible for their own safety and exercise a high degree of caution due to crime, the government states.
Violent crimes and express kidnapping are safety issues travellers should be aware of. Petty crimes including pickpocketing and bag snatching are also common. The Canadian government has also issued a warning for women travelling to Costa Rica as "incidents of sexual assault against foreigners at beach resorts and by taxi drivers in San José have been reported."
Additionally, tourists should be on the lookout for the possibility of spiked food and drinks, and unregulated alcohol.
France is home to the city of lights and love, however, the Canadian government has issued a travel advisory for the European country. Canadian travellers are expected to exercise a high degree of caution when visiting France due to ongoing threats of terrorism.
Travellers are also expected to look out for petty crimes, violent crimes, residential and vehicle break-ins, fraud, and the possibility of strikes and demonstrations — particularly around popular tourist areas, department stores, transport hubs, and parks.
Although Lebanon is a country rich in culture and history, the Canadian government has issued a travel advisory for the Middle Eastern country, urging Canadian travellers to "exercise a high degree of caution in Lebanon due to an unpredictable security situation and the risk of a terrorist attack."
The government is also indicating that travel should be completely avoided in the southern suburbs of Beirut, areas that border Syria, Palestinian refugee camps, and various other regions.
The country is also facing immense fuel and power shortages, along with issues surrounding their currency exchange, and access to medication and medical supplies.
Despite the Dominican Republic being a popular vacation destination, the government of Canada is urging Canadians to "exercise a high degree of caution" if they choose to travel to the Dominican Republic.
According to the travel advisory, tourists should be on high alert for crimes, petty crimes, assault, scams, fraud, spiked drinks and food, and power outages. The government is also alerting women who choose to travel solo to be extra cautious as they "may be subject to some forms of harassment and verbal abuse."
This article's cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.
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