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Dominican Republic Ministry of Tourism Addresses Travel Concerns



As many as seven Americans have died in the Dominican Republic and travelers are beginning to wonder if the country is safe to visit.

The ministry of tourism is taking steps to reassure those who are concerned about traveling to the country, according to a report in USA Today.

“The Dominican Republic is a safe country,” Francisco Javier Garcia, the minister of tourism in the Dominican Republic, told reporters. “There is no such thing as mysterious deaths in the Dominican Republic. There is not an avalanche of deaths.”

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Garcia also noted that seven deaths in the country is not unheard of and that it is a lower number than other years, saying that in both 2011 and 2015 through June, 15 tourists died in the Dominican Republic.

“Unfortunately, people die in situations that they don’t want; these things happen and they will continue to happen in the world,” he said. “The worst news is when we are informed that a tourist that has visited the Dominican Republic has died, no matter the cause of death. … We are in mourning with the victim, we are in suffering with the victim, but the Dominican Republic has made a name for itself in tourism.”

Currently, the U.S. State Department shows the Dominican Republic at a level 2 advisory, which is the same as countries such as Spain and France. Its most recent advisory, which was from April 15, 2019, said that travelers should be concerned about violent crime such as armed robbery, homicide and sexual assault.

TravAlliancemedia president and CEO Mark Murphy addressed the issues in the Dominican Republic in the latest TravelPulse Podcast.

“All of these disparate things that are trying to be tied together by sensational media can’t possibly be tied together. You can’t have killer minibars that are in multiple resorts with multiple owners and are, in many cases, hours apart from each other and think that there’s some connection. It makes no sense,” said Murphy.

Murphy points out to those who are nervous that he is still planning to travel to the country.

“I was just in the Dominican Republic at Sanctuary Cap Cana. I’m going to La Romana in August and I’m going back to Cap Cana this fall. Why would I do that if I had any concerns?” he asked. “If the FBI and CDC are there and the State Department is involved and they’re not telling people to stop coming, then what are you worried about?”

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New Tool Tracks Travelers’ Perceptions of Safety Throughout Reopening Phase



MMGY Global has launched a brand new Travel Safety Barometer tool to help the travel and tourism industry monitor American travelers’ perceptions of safety as society gradually reopens in the wake of COVID-19.

Measured on a scale from 0 (extremely unsafe) to 100 (extremely safe) and based on a monthly survey of 1,200 American travelers, Travel Safety Barometer metrics are published for a series of categories, including domestic and international travel, transportation, lodging, cruising, dining and entertainment.

Currently, MMGY Global’s data suggests that domestic leisure travel, which scores just 34, will bounce back before international (22) or even business travel (29).

The recent Travel Intentions Pulse Survey (TIPS) conducted by MMGY Travel Intelligence found that two-thirds of Americans (68 percent) feel safest when traveling by personal vehicle, so it’s little surprise that the Driving Safety Barometer is highest at 72, more than double that of taking a flight (30). Transportation overall scores a 56.

Lodging is much lower at 35, while dining and entertainment are just slightly behind at 33.

With cruise lines temporarily suspending operations and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issuing a no-sail order through late-July, MMGY Global’s Cruise Safety Barometer scores the lowest of any category at 18.

PHOTO: International Travel Safety Barometer. (photo courtesy of MMGY Global)

“Travelers’ perceptions of safety are shaped by everything from the latest news headlines and personal experiences to social media. The Travel Safety Barometer will highlight how consumer perceptions of safety evolve as states, countries and travel-related businesses cautiously begin to reopen, allowing the industry to adjust their operational and marketing strategies accordingly to meet consumer needs,” said Chris Davidson, executive vice president of insights and strategy, MMGY Travel Intelligence, in a statement accompanying Thursday’s announcement.

“There is much work to be done by the industry to put in place measures to protect the public’s health and well-being,” added Davidson. “Once this is accomplished, the next challenge becomes how will destinations, hotels, airlines, cruises and other travel businesses provide peace of mind to travelers who perceive them to be unsafe.”

Visit to download the full report.

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