Trip Report Travel warning for San Pedro

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HKGuns

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- The point of his post was to inform that tourists are being targeted
- He stated very clearly in his original post he was ignorant of the law and that others were not wearing masks

Yet he is confronted with vitriol from nearly every response chiding him for not respecting the law in another country?

This silly virus has made people flipping crazy and some of you need reading lessons. Your fears and irrationality do give you a license to abuse people.
 

Ayisha

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That might be because the OP joined SB on Wednesday with the post below. They didn't know how to use the quote function, so the post appeared as an addition to someone's quote, and didn't get much traction. So they posted it again in the same thread, to not much avail.

Then on Friday, they started this thread. In all three posts they directed people to TripAdvisor to see similar posts. I'm guessing they have a review there as well.
They start with: "Can recommend a great dive shop, and some cool dive sites. However, first..."
They still haven't gotten to those recommendations...

Desperately need an easy trip - hopefully w/out sand fleas

Quote from Sailon:

"Be careful if you are thinking about diving here in San Pedro. We are here now. Diving is hit or miss with high winds keeping the boats from going out.
Worse, the San Pedro police are targeting tourists, harassing them if you don’t wear a mask outside, arrest you and take you to the sweaty old police station for 2 hours. Then forced to pay $250 each to be able to leave the country.
This is killing their economy recovery efforts. We are stuck at our hotel for fear of being targeted and harassed again by police. Others are posting similar experiences on Trip Advisor. Good news…no sand fleas so far."
 

divinh

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At issue seems to be the OP's feeling of being unequally treated, given that seemingly only tourists were being fined. Perhaps tourists are easy money, like when police pull over cars with out-of-state licenses? Or there is legitimate concern over foreign imported spread and strict enforcement is the rule of the day, though would a fine prevent it? Versus a warning?

In an ideal world, the police would warn, keep a record of it, and give a hefty fine ($1000/incident?), if caught again, then there's the fair warning and more massive penalty for those that flaunt the rules.

Can the OP resolve the problem by wearing a mask for the rest of the holiday? Instead of being cooped up in a hotel room? Or is that a byproduct of feeling singled out and perhaps worried that tourists are being targeted for other things, unknown to the OP?
 

Downing

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It would be traumatic to take a ride to a foreign police station in the back of a police car, especially so if you haven't committed a real crime.

The Belize military occasionally sets up roadblocks on the Hummingbird Highway. The first couple of times I had to stop I was a little nervous even though I wasn't doing anything wrong. These were stern looking soldiers with big guns and customer service isn't a part of their skill set. They made the Belize City cops' occasional roadblock on the Northern Highway look Mickey Mouse by comparison.
 

lowwall

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- He stated very clearly in his original post he was ignorant of the law and that others were not wearing masks.
He's either lying or worked incredibly hard to avoid the warnings that are posted on every Belizean government tourism and travel website and most dive shop and hotel websites and the official forms that must be filled in prior to entry in which you must agree to abide by the following:

ALL PERSONS MUST MEET REQUIREMENTS FOR ENTRY INTO BELIZE, IN ACCORDANCE WITH SECTION 24 OF THE IMMIGRATION ACT CHAPTER 156 OF THE LAWS OF BELIZE.

Belize observes the mandatory use of mask (face and nose covering) and social distancing of six (6) feet...

Seriously, even without all of this, how likely is it that someone is going to book a dive trip now and not bother to check the destination's COVID restrictions? A much more likely explanation is that he did know the law, saw some locals not wearing masks and decided he could get away with not complying with the law. Frankly he got what he deserved. How about this? Before you travel to a foreign country, review that country's COVID restrictions. If you aren't willing to abide by them, then book a trip somewhere else.
 

Jafo19D

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He's either lying or worked incredibly hard to avoid the warnings that are posted on every Belizean government tourism and travel website and most dive shop and hotel websites and the official forms that must be filled in prior to entry in which you must agree to abide by the following:

ALL PERSONS MUST MEET REQUIREMENTS FOR ENTRY INTO BELIZE, IN ACCORDANCE WITH SECTION 24 OF THE IMMIGRATION ACT CHAPTER 156 OF THE LAWS OF BELIZE.

Belize observes the mandatory use of mask (face and nose covering) and social distancing of six (6) feet...

Seriously, even without all of this, how likely is it that someone is going to book a dive trip now and not bother to check the destination's COVID restrictions? A much more likely explanation is that he did know the law, saw some locals not wearing masks and decided he could get away with not complying with the law. Frankly he got what he deserved. How about this? Before you travel to a foreign country, review that country's COVID restrictions. If you aren't willing to abide by them, then book a trip somewhere else.
Exactly! COVID is a worldwide issue and every country has had to deal with it. It’s the first thing you would check before going.

Personally I feel it’s incredibly risky traveling outside of the country during this time especially if you are required to have a test before traveling back. If you test positive and have to quarantine 2-3 weeks can you handle that ? 2-3 unplanned weeks at a hotel and the meals are quite expensive. And this is assuming that you’re not showing symptoms.
 

HKGuns

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He's either lying or worked incredibly hard to avoid the warnings that are posted on every Belizean government tourism and travel website and most dive shop and hotel websites and the official forms that must be filled in prior to entry in which you must agree to abide by the following:

ALL PERSONS MUST MEET REQUIREMENTS FOR ENTRY INTO BELIZE, IN ACCORDANCE WITH SECTION 24 OF THE IMMIGRATION ACT CHAPTER 156 OF THE LAWS OF BELIZE.

Belize observes the mandatory use of mask (face and nose covering) and social distancing of six (6) feet...

That says nothing about wearing your mask outside, so yes, it is entirely plausible he didn't know. Especially when there is abundant evidence this virus cannot spread outdoors, which is why in the US, wearing masks outside is not required. Perhaps lightweight has ya'll wearing masks outside, I don't know.

Regardless, ignorance of the law isn't an excuse that will get you off anywhere. Even when the law is stupid.
 

Downing

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Before you travel to a foreign country, review that country's COVID restrictions. If you aren't willing to abide by them, then book a trip somewhere else.

Exactly! COVID is a worldwide issue and every country has had to deal with it. It’s the same me thing you would check before going.

Regardless, ignorance of the law isn't an excuse that will get you off anywhere. Even when the law is stupid.

Fair enough.
 

ReefHound

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Jeez, tough crowd.

It's not clear to me that Sailon knew he was supposed to be wearing a mask even when walking around outside. If he knew that was the case and chose to ignore it, yeah, that's on him. If he didn't know then it's not his fault and a simple warning from the cops would have sufficed. If he then continued to not wear a mask, then book him, Dano.

Unless it's a written warning logged in a database there's no way to track who has received a warning. Everyone will claim they didn't know even if it's the tenth time they have been stopped by the police.
 
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