Did you read this from Reader’s Digest? Hint: I never read it!!!!
So in which state do the majority of these muggings take place? Nevada. FBI statistics show the state saw 217.5 robberies per 100,000 people in 2015. That’s compared to the 164 robberies per 100,000 people in the second most robbery-laden state, Maryland.
State number three is California, with 135 robberies, followed by Delaware, with 130.6. New York rounds out the top five with 120.9 robberies. San Francisco is the third most dangerous city in California for violent crime!!
Having just returned from San Diego, the homeless and drug situation there is truly alarming. As I walked back to my Gaslamp district hotel after an extra inning game that lasted almost to midnight, I did feel a little vulnerable. But I tried to follow the crowd, and made it back without any trouble.
The very worst time I have had on the road occurred at one of those freeway rest stops along I-5. I needed to use the facilities, so I stopped and went in. Several “bums” had made the men’s toilet their temporary home. They asked for money to buy food. How vulnerable can a person be when they have their zipper down? Upon finishing, I reached in my pocket, and threw all of my coins onto the floor. I sprinted to my car, and got the heck out of there. I forgot to mention they were holding tin can lids they had removed from their previous meal.
I always considered Washington, DC at night to be the most dangerous place in the U.S. These days, with Uber, most of those fears have subsided. But I can recall many times, being followed from my restaurant back to my hotel. I was always dressed nicely, and perhaps too easy a target.
Yesterday, as I got off the bus from downtown San Diego to the airport, I was accosted by a homeless man for cash or drugs. He said I had a choice as to which one. I told him I had neither, and would go to the airport police to ask for his removal. I just did not go, I sprinted inside the terminal, never looking back!!
In 2017, more than 800 U.S. citizens died overseas of unnatural causes, according to State Department data. We took into account both number of deaths and the number of tourists traveling to that country to calculate the death rates for U.S. citizens in each country.
While Mexico had the most tourist deaths in 2017, it also had the highest number of travelers — almost half of all Americans traveling out of the country go south of the border. Thailand had relatively few American visitors, but a relatively high number of deaths. The most common causes of death for visitors overseas was car accidents and homicide.
Hint: I do not go to Mexico very often, but I do visit Thailand fairly often. But we rarely rent a car!
However, both Vietnam and Thailand are at the top of the list of dangerous countries. And we are visiting both next month. Thailand had 33 deaths or 5.74 deaths per 100,000 visitors, while Vietnam had 13 deaths or 3.77 deaths per 100,000 tourists. Rarely do either of these countries have travel warnings. Thailand does have frequent political demonstrations, but relatively few compared to Burma, France, Turkey, and Spain.
In reality, what makes anyone of us feel we are in danger? First, the people around me. Second the neighborhood or specific location (like a bar or party). And third, if I ever felt out of control (drunk or drugged), which I hope is never! Rarely do I have more than two glasses of beer, wine or champagne when I travel alone.
But a few years back, Mr. Mike and I walked into a rather seedy bar in Pucon, Chile. An inebriated, and rough looking character was mouthing off. We paid for our half finished beer, and got the heck out of there. It was probably the worst experience we ever had on the road. And we knew better than to go into that bar!!!
So, when I mention to you to TRAVEL SAFELY, I really mean it. It applies to all of us, whether experienced, solo, or in your car.